New Orleans in 2018

A bid to host the Worldcon in New Orleans in 2018 trumpeted its existence in a full-page ad at the back of Chicon 7’s first progress report [PDF file].

This was not another cryptic Worldcon advertisement like the one for Kansas City’s last bid, which otherwise remained under wraps for the following year. The New Orleans ad included an e-mail address – neworleansin2018@gmail.com — and they answer!

Committee member Jessica Styons replied to me:

Obviously we are in the early stages of building support, gauging interest and staking a claim but we are interested in all comments, offers of support and assistance.

Styons is one of the New Orleans bidders Petrea Mitchell at Con-News said was also working on CONtraflow, to be held in November, “the first full-spectrum convention there since Hurricane Katrina”.

Another is Rebecca Smith, chair of CONtraflow, whose broadcast e-mail (courtesy of Andrew Porter) tells more:

New Orleans in 2018 is an effort by myself and a group of others in NOLA to bring Worldcon back to our hometown. As some of you have noticed, the main people behind it, for the time being, are also involved with a new con in New Orleans starting up this year, CONtraflow, of which I am chairman.  It’s a new con, but we’re not new to con organization having worked for numerous other conventions, as individuals, in the past, like Coastcon, Mobicon, Crescent City Con, Vulcon, NOSFFF, Deltacon and others, including Nolacon II, but in a much, much humbler capacity (some of us were only in college then).

We’re still gathering our committee and organizing our nefarious plan for world domination — that is what we’re talking about, right? There’s not much more concrete to say at this point, 5 years out from the voting year. Although the con will, should we win, take place in New Orleans and be led primarily by New Orleanians, it will require a regional effort with involvement from fandom all over the Central Gulf Coast, that area along the Coast, stretching roughly from Lake Charles to Mobile, whose fannish inhabitants commonly attend and give support to each others cons and other activities.  We welcome, of course, support and involvement from all quarters of fandom, especially our fellow Southerners.  

New Orleans has hosted the Worldcon twice, in 1951 (when Roger Sims held the party in Room 770) and in 1988.