Smofcon Europe Posts Worldcon, Eurocon and Smofcon Bidder Questionnaires

Smofcon Europe, a convention for conrunners taking place December 3-5 in Lisboa, Portugal asked Worldcon, Eurocon and Smofcon bidders to answer a questionnaire.

The responses have been posted at Smofcon Europe’s website here. (Direct links below.)

There will also be a series of Q&A sessions at the con on December 4 where bid representatives will make presentations and take questions.

Seated Worldcons

Worldcon bids

Eurocon bids

SMOFcon bids

Three other announced Worldcon bids submitted questionnaires to last year’s Smofcon but are not represented here:

  • Jeddah in 2026
  • Nice in 2026
  • Orlando in 2026

Also absent is the Winnipeg in 2023 bid announced since the last Smofcon.

There is also an Australian bid getting organized.

  • Brisbane in 2028

And there is pre-bid activity for two more locations, Dublin in 2029 and Texas in 2031, whose committees would not be expected to participate at this stage.  

Glasgow in 2024 Bid Polls Presupporters About Possible Guests of Honor

The Glasgow in 2024 Worldcon bid is inviting their presupporters to contribute Guest of Honor suggestions.

They are not soliciting responses from the unaffiliated public, but if someone who has not already signed up to support does so before the survey closes on December 31 they will be able to submit suggestions for the GoH process. 

The Glasgow in 2024 bid is currently unopposed. The 2024 site selection vote will occur next year.

The announcement on Facebook explains how the survey works:

Glasgow in 2024 wants to hear from you! If you are a supporter of Glasgow in 2024 you are invited to contribute to our survey for Guest of Honour suggestions.

Guests of Honour (GoH) of Worldcons are people who have made a significant contribution to science fiction and fantasy, and the list of previous Worldcon Guests of Honour represents many of the most notable figures in the genre.

The contribution may be of any kind and past Guests of Honour have included authors, editors, performers, artists, games designers, scientists, and fans. A Worldcon honours and celebrates them by highlighting their contributions and by inviting them to play a special role in the convention. The choice of GoHs is therefore one of the most important decisions that the committee makes. The genre is wide, and we want to capture as many varied suggestions as possible.

How does the process work?

As a supporter, you will be emailed with a link to the survey and invited to suggest as few or as many names as you want. A name is enough, but there is an optional section to write in some brief reasons why this person would make a good Guest of Honour, and to provide a link to relevant work that they may have produced (a Wikipedia page is great, for example).

The survey will be open until 31-December-2021, and thereafter the bid committee will review all suggested names.

We will use these names to help us select the Guests of Honour who best represent Glasgow in 2024. This discussion will be private, and we will not release the list of people suggested. A suggestion is just that, it does not mean automatic conferment of a Guest of Honour title (we are hoping to gather hundreds of names!). However, each submitted name will be considered.

Similarly, we are looking for a list of many names, not for the number of times any one name has been suggested. Our decisions may not be the most popular suggestions. There are many reasons for this, but a practical reason might be that the person refuses or is unavailable over the dates we propose. However, the more people you suggest the wider our pool for consideration will be.

If you want to feed into the process and haven’t yet supported us, then join the bid via our supporter page https://glasgow2024.org/presupport/

As the announcement says, “This discussion will be private, and we will not release the list of people suggested,” because it is a custom that Worldcon bids do not reveal their prospective GoHs to avoid any impression that site selection is a vote for or against creators the bids want to honor.

COP26 and Glasgow in 2024

[File 770 asked the Glasgow in 2024 bidders whether the huge international climate summit, COP26, being held this week in SEC, the venue where they propose to hold the Worldcon, will have any effects or benefits for them.]

By Esther MacCallum-Stewart, Chair, Glasgow in 2024 Bid: Thanks for the recent query about COP26. It’s all rather exciting — we were able to visit Glasgow last month and hear directly about some of the preparations that the SEC is undertaking. Many of these will have long term effects on the site, and will also guide the SEC in their upcoming expansion. I’ve also included an image – it’s Getty Images, and came from this page here, which also gives more general details of Scotland’s own plans after the event: “COP26: Nicola Sturgeon says credible action needed on climate crisis”. (BBC News)

COP26 has  produced an enormous impact on Glasgow. In advance, there were new hotels built on the SEC campus that have only just opened (Marriott Courtyard & Moxy). There was, and remains, strong demand for more hotel space in Glasgow, however there are now 1500 bedrooms within 5-10 minutes walk of the SEC  (compared with under 300 in 1995, and 5-600 in 2005, the two previous years Worldcon was held there).

Both Glasgow Council & the SEC have used the impetus of COP26 to radically overhaul their environmental & sustainability policies — details in the links below:

The SEC is also now open to reuse options. For example, if succeeding events both want to carpet a particular area, in the past Event A would contract with a supplier to come in, lay the carpet, and then at the end of the event the supplier would come back and rip up and dispose of it — Event B doing the same again. The SEC will now help facilitate reuse between the two events — more sustainable and allows for cost sharing.

COP26 has also caused the SEC to consider innovative solutions to address some of the issues — e.g. they have converted their open car parks into usable space by building temporary structures, something like a large tent but more solid than that.  I’ve attached an image of this, and you can see the scale of the site! I am sure there are many other things they are doing now which will be offered as options to us in the coming years (assuming we become seated.) We expect some of these to evolve as the event takes place and things are brought to light, which is rather exciting. I must admit I’m also rather tickled to think of some of the world’s greatest diplomats tucking themselves up to sleep after a hard day in the Crowne Plaza, or hanging out in our programme rooms! 

Not directly related to COP, more a consequence of Covid-19, the SEC have also gone through a major upgrade of their tech which should greatly assist with streaming of content to virtual attendees. 

We spoke to the SEC this week and wish them, and COP26, the best of luck with this momentous event! 

Esther MacCallum-Stewart, Bid Chair.

Memphis In 2023 Worldcon Bid Has Folded

Memphis in 2023
Kate Secor and Cliff Dunn, chairs of the Memphis In 2023 Worldcon bid, have announced that the bid is being withdrawn from consideration. In an e-mail to their supporters, and in posts on their website, Facebook, and Twitter accounts, they posted the following statement.

Thank You for Your Support Over the Last 2 Years

It is with great sadness that we let you know that the Memphis in 2023 bid has folded. The challenges and uncertainties surrounding the pandemic have severely hampered our ability to run the campaign we had been hoping to so it has led us to fold this bid. We thank you so much for all of your support and appreciate that you believed in us. Those of you who are still due t-shirts, we will be mailing those out to you soon.

When the site selection ballot is released by DisCon III, you will see a WITHDRAWN watermark over our listing on the ballot – that is what DC III has told us they will be doing. We are going to throw a thank you party at DisCon III and invite you to come by and let us toast you and your support. We look forward to seeing so many of you that we sadly haven’t seen in so long.

Our very best,
Kate Secor and Cliff Dunn

The remaining Worldcon bids for 2023 are for Chengdu, China, and Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada.

Texas in 2031 Worldcon Bid Begins Taking Presupports

Sara Felix has started accepting presupports for a Texas in 2031 Worldcon bid. The city is still to be determined.

She says, “Right now presupports are going to my PayPal/Venmo as we haven’t got the accounts set up.” The URL for that is https://paypal.me/sillysarasue. The nonprofit conrunning organization ALAMO, Inc. has a meeting soon and will start setting up the bid structure.   

Felix adds, “Sentimentally…. This for me is dedicated to the memory of Fred Duarte who really was the one to get me into running conventions.  Willie Siros took me to my first Armadillocon but Fred was the first to take me to meeting with the hotels and started helping me getting involved in con running.  He always had the best advice and best gossip a con runner could ask for.”

Earlier this year in her File 770 guest post “Why I Work on Worldcon”, Felix highlighted the depth of experience she brings to the table. She is an artist, the president of The Association of Science Fiction and Fantasy Artists, and runs their Chesley Awards. She was part of the Mexicanx Initiative at the 2018 Worldcon. With Colin Harris she created the Artist Showcase that has now been a staple at many Worldcons since Chicon 7.  

Sara Felix collecting $20 presupports.

Pre-Bid Planning Under Way for Dublin in 2029

Brian Nisbet and Marguerite Smith have not technically announced a bid yet, but over the weekend they revealed their intention to bid for Dublin in 2029 at this year’s Octocon, the Irish National Science Fiction Convention. 

They will be at SMOFcon in Lisbon and DisCon III to share the message again, and will become more active as they progress into 2022 and beyond.

They are reachable at bidchairs@dublin2029.ie, and have a placemarker site at dublin2029.ie.

[Thanks to Marguerite Smith and Brian Nisbet for the story.]

Looking Ahead to 2023 Site Selection

Three groups are bidding to host the 2023 con — Chengdu, China, Memphis, USA, and Winnipeg, Canada – and DisCon III’s Newsletter Issue 2 distributed in early September noted the Advance Supporting Membership rate will be announced no later than when the Site Selection Ballot is released to the public. File 770 inquired when that will happen.

Site Selection Administrator Tim Szczesuil says, “The Tech Division is developing the online payment system for the Site Selection Voting Fee. We hope to have it available shortly. As soon as the payment process is complete we’ll release the Site Selection ballot.”

Winnipeg in 2023 Will Be On Worldcon Site Selection Ballot

The Winnipeg in 2023 Worldcon bid filing has been accepted by DisCon III, and will appear on the published ballot even though the original deadline has passed.

The DisCon III committee explained the decision:

As previously announced, the filing deadline for bidding for the 2023 Worldcon was February 26, 2021. We have examined Winnipeg’s filing documents and found them to be complete. Using our discretion as the administering convention, we have decided to include Winnipeg on the Site Selection ballot and to include them in any ongoing discussions with the other bidders.

The original deadline was based on DisCon III’s planned August dates and the WSFS Constition’s requirement that a bid must be filed 180 days prior to the opening of the con that administers Site Selection. When, earlier this month, DisCon III moved its dates to December, Kevin Standlee argued that the deadline to get on the ballot should be changed, too.

As for the voting fee that will be charged for 2023 site selection memberships, the Winnipeg bid has accepted the voting fee previously agreed between the two other bids that filed by the deadline – Chengdu, China, and Memphis, USA.

Winnipeg Joins the Race for the 2023 Worldcon

The Winnipeg in 2023 Committee today announced their bid for the 81st World Science Fiction Convention. The bid has filed the required papers with the DisCon III committee inviting the Worldcon to return to Winnipeg for the first time since 1994.

The Winnipeg in 2023 committee proposes to host the Worldcon at the RBC Convention Center in Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada from August 24-28, 2023. The RBC Convention Center has doubled in size since it hosted the 52nd Worldcon in 1994, and is now Canada’s fourth largest convention center.

The bid committee is headed by Terry Fong, an experienced Worldcon convention organizer, and includes John Mansfield, the chair of the last Worldcon in Winnipeg, as a senior advisor. Its 23 members are experienced convention organizers, including past Worldcon and World Fantasy Convention chairs and local convention runners.

The Winnipeg in 2023 bid is a committee of Cansmof, a Canadian not-for-profit corporation that specializes in running and sponsoring fannish events in Canada. The bid is endorsed by WINSFA Inc., which oversees KeyCon, an annual science fiction convention that has been held in Winnipeg since 1984 over the Victoria Day weekend each year. Although the 2020 and 2021 events are virtual for safety reasons, the 2022 KeyCon is planning an in person event again. More information about KeyCon is available at Keycon.org.

 This bid was developed with the support of Tourism Winnipeg. The last Worldcon in Winnipeg generated an estimated Canadian $9M in economic activity and drew nearly 4000 attendees from around the world. The last Canadian Worldcon in Montreal in 2009 had similar numbers..

The Winnipeg bid is competing with Chengdu, Sichuan, China and Memphis, Tennessee to host the 2023 Worldcon

Copies of their submissions to Site Selection can be downloaded here.

More information about the Winnipeg bid is available from the committee’s website, winnipegin2023.ca. Direct queries for additional information can be sent to info@WinnipegIn2023.ca.

The chair may be directly contacted at chair@WinnipegIn2023.ca.

Social Media: 

Organization of the Bid

  • Chair: Terry Fong
  • Vice-Chair: Robbie Bourget, Linda Ross Mansfield
  • Graphics: Phynix Caskey
  • Social Media: Marah Searle-Kovacevic
  • Discord: CarynLiz Bleakley-Fauerbach (Dundee,Scotland)

Other bid committee members:

  • Rebecca Downey (Montreal, QC, Canada)
  • Bruce Farr (Santa Rosa, CA, USA)
  • Neyir Cenk Gökçe (Ottawa, ON, Canada)
  • Níamh Kearney (Dublin, Ireland)
  • Diane Lacey (Toronto, ON, Canada)
  • Ruth Lichtwardt (Lawrence, KS, USA)
  • John Mansfield (Winnipeg, MB, Canada)
  • Sheena Morrison-Sousa (Winnipeg, MB, Canada)
  • Maree Pavletich (Auckland, New Zealand)
  • Andrea Senchy (Woodland Park, NJ, USA)
  • Jannie Shea (Tulsa, OK, USA)
  • Chuck Shimada (Huntington Beach, CA, USA)
  • Albert Sousa (Winnipeg, MB, Canada)
  • Christine Taylor-Butler (Kansas City)

[Based on a press release.]

2023 Worldcon Bid Filing Documents Online

DisCon III, the 2021 Worldcon, has now posted the filing documents from the two committees bidding for the right to hold the 2023 Worldcon, Chengdu, China and Memphis, Tennessee.

These documents are (1) an announcement of intent to bid; (2) an agreement with the proposed site’s facilities; and (3) the rules under which the Worldcon Committee will operate. 

Here are direct links: