Mike Willmoth (mwillmoth) wrote,
Mike Willmoth
mwillmoth

Trip 2015-12 Review: SMOFcon 33

Trip 2015-12 Review: SMOFcon 33

My wife and I drove to Fort Worth, TX, to attend SMOFcon 33 there. SMOFcon is the conrunners convention held annually somewhere in the world, usually on the first weekend in December. We left home (Phoenix, AZ) on Wednesday December 2 and stayed overnight in El Paso, TX, about 400 miles southeast. We then left on Thu Dec 3 for Ft Worth, arriving at the con hotel, Sheraton Ft Worth Hotel & Spa, downtown. Ft Worth and Dallas are relatively close together, but distinct cities. We parked, checked in, and unloaded our luggage from our van into our room. After settling my wife in the room I wandered around to see if anyone else had arrived. I spoke with a few fans, returning to the room to get online and crash.

Fri Dec 4 we rose, cleaned up and headed out for lunch. We found an acceptable restaurant, did some shopping for the room and returned. I got our memberships and searched for the Hospitality Suite. Apparently, it was late opening up so I stood around with several other fans to chat and wait. When it did open we consumed what was put out before I left for the room to fill in Jean on the weekend's schedule. After some computer work I found some friends to go out to dinner with, planning to bring back something for Jean instead of her having to go back out, and we walked to a nearby restaurant. It was busy, so we had to find a different restaurant, but it worked out well and we had a good time. We returned in time for the Opening Ceremonies (after delivering the to-go order to my wife) with plenty of opportunity to mull, linger, and chat. We visited the Hosp Ste again, which was stocked better than before, and I had several great conversations before returning to my room.

Sat Dec 5 was when the real program schedule began. There were the usual program items on conrunning and some unusual ones. I nabbed lunch with a friend nearby and we returned for more programming. Once dinner rolled around I went out with another group and we sat outside on a very busy patio to enjoy their fare. I got more to-go as well. After returning we held the infamous Fannish Inquisition. I was part of the New Orleans In 2018 Worldcon Bid, so got to participate when it was our turn to present. We made a few mistakes and learned from them for later presentations. We also voted on the site for SMOFcon 34 (2016); it went to Chicago unopposed. I then met a friend in the restaurant for a small meal and con talk. Later, I hit the Hosp Ste again before calling it a night.

Sun Dec 6 I attended more programming, did lunch with friends, attended the remaining programming before Closing Ceremonies, then chatted with friends in the lobby. A large group set out for a final dinner together at an offsite barbecue restaurant, so I joined in. After returning I hung out as the convention broke down and packed out. I ended the evening in the room with my wife giving her an update and getting online. Mon Dec 7 we left Ft Worth to return to El Paso. We stayed there overnight again. We left for home Tue Dec 8 and had an uneventful trip back, listening to audiobooks like we do.

All in all the convention went well. The Ft Worth fans did a good job and their bid for 2021 Worldcon was well represented. We enjoyed Ft Worth more than we expected, especially the restaurants downtown. And for those who watched the movie, Logan's Run, the fountain scene near the end of the movie was shot not far from the hotel we stayed in. Kinda cool!
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