Mike Willmoth (mwillmoth) wrote,
Mike Willmoth

Spokane WA Trip February 2015

February 2015 Trip to Spokane, WA

As part of my duties being Vice Chair for Sasquan (Worldcon 2015) in Spokane, WA, I got to attend the Convention Center Division Staff Meeting there. The CC Div was later combined into the new Facilities Division, but in Feb 2015 it was still separate. Since our Layouts Area Head / Decorator Liaison (same person) had not toured the Spokane Convention Center (SCC), the Division Head (DH) scheduled a tour of the facilities (SCC). Additionally, some other staff persons had requested to attend since many had not toured the SCC either. This turned out to be primarily from our Events Division, but also from our Tech Division.

Because of the time of year we could not risk driving from Phoenix to Spokane without dealing with snow. So I opted to fly non-stop. I ended up staying at the DoubleTree Hotel next to the SCC (actually, attached). I flew in the day before the site visit and met up with some staff members for dinner. We found a nearby restaurant and caught up on pleasantries before returning to our respective hotels for the evening. On the tour day we met for breakfast at the Hilton, then walked next door to the SCC to meet with our contact there. He introduced us to the catering reps with whom we'd be ordering food & beverages during the convention. The DL then went off to meet with the proposed decorators after we toured the exhibit halls where our DL would be designing our CAD (Computer Aided Design) layouts to submit to the city's fire marshall. Many of the staff spent time in the INB Theater (site of the Masquerade and Hugo Awards Ceremony) while the CCD DH and I met with the caterer reps for additional details. After all the meetings he and I wandered over to the high end restaurant, Clinkerdagger's, for dinner. Unfortunately, they had a two hour wait so we wandered around the area and talked about the con. That's where I proposed a possible solution to the Facilities Division issue.

My suggestion was to combine CCD and FD into a new FD with two sub-divisions: Convention Center and Hotels. As it turned out within one month I had another resignation which forced me to enact this proposal. Thankfully, the CCD DH was receptive and he became the new FD. We finally made it into the restaurant, had somewhat of a delay in receiving our meal thanks to an error in the kitchen, whereupon the manager apologized and gave us gift cards for our next visit. We used them this visit and saved a lot of money on our total bill! We then parted ways and I got online before shutting down for the night. The following day I packed up and headed back to the airport to fly home.

Although this trip was short, about 48 hours, we got lots done for Sasquan. We also got to meet some other staff persons whom we'd not met yet. We had good food and I set up a solution to a major problem which ended up working out well. I'd say it was a win overall.

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