Pre-Registration Raffle Prize!

Hi Skepticondlers!

Just a quick reminder to pre-register for Skepticon 9! If you do, you’ll be rewarded with a dedicated line for check-in, faster check-in, and a chance to win a sweet raffle prize!

The raffle prize this year is a National Geographic Dino Greenhouse Kit! Click here to see what it’s all about!

Even if you don’t care about the raffle prize, we would love it if you would pre-register so we can make sure we have enough stuff for everyone.

So CLICK HERE to register!

Thank you so much!
Team Skepticon

PS – You can donate while you’re registering, too! Donate $100 through the Secret Surprise link and get something awesome! Or click here to donate!

Prom Clothes Closet!

Hey hey Skeptonistas!

We’re making the Prom Clothes Closet official this year! Last year we had an attendee who had a couple of dresses that they didn’t want, but thought someone else could use them. A couple more dresses showed up, and an impromptu clothes closet was formed. This year we want to make it bigger and even better!

To do this, we need clothes to stock the closet, so see what you have hiding in the back of your own closet. We’re looking for gently used, clean dresses, skirts, suits (or parts of them — dress shirt, jacket, slacks, etc.), shoes, costume jewelry… anything you think would be appreciated as Prom wear! (Hangers would be much appreciated, too!) All donations are tax deductible, and a receipt can be provided upon request. And while fancy is sometimes fun, any style clothing is welcome, as SkeptiProm is not a “fancy-dress required” event.

If you’re in the market for something Prom-like, swing by the Closet to see what we have! The Closet will be located in the Grand Lobby, near registration. This is a no questions asked Closet — if see something you like, feel free to take it! Anything left over will be stored and carried over to SK10.

We hope to have a lot of fun with this, and hope you will too, whether you’re a donor or a recipient or both!

Love,
Team Skepticon

PS — You know the drill : ) Donate! Register! Rinse and repeat!

Friday Game Night

Greetings Skepticoners!

Our Friday Game Night has been a huge success from day one, and we can’t wait for this year’s! Unlike prior years, we do not have a sponsor for this event. We would love to have a stockpile of tabletop games for people to choose from, so if you have games you would like to share with your fellow attendees, bring’em!

Of course, the usual verbiage — Skepticon is not responsible for loss, theft, or damage of items. If you bring games to leave for general use, please label your games with your name. Please remember to pick your game up at the end of the night, or swing by the activities booth (across from Registration) to get it on Saturday or Sunday. We are unable to ship games back to people, so please remember to come get them!

If you don’t have a game to bring, don’t worry! The more the merrier, and there should be plenty of games to go around.

And just to make things easier and possibly more fun, there will be a cash bar available in the game room.

So bring your games and/or your game faces, and see what sort of shenanigans you can get up to!

Love,
Team Skepticon

PS — Donate and register, please! We promise the begging will stop soon! But remember that our matching challenge is still going on, so all donations will be worth double!

Saturday Night Social!

Hi there, Skepticoneers!

I know, you’re all saying, “Saturday Night Social? But Bluebecca, the Prom is on Saturday night! How can you have 2 events at the same time?!” It’s easy peasy, my friends.

We recognize that people don’t necessarily want to dance or hang out in a loud, crowded room, but they might still want to socialize. So, we’re opening up the Grand Ballroom! It will still be set up in the lecture format, but we’re rolling in some tables so y’all can play games, sit around a chit chat, do crafts, plot how to take over the world.. whatever it is that makes your Saturday night special!

The bar at SkeptiProm will be available for all your thirst-quenching needs (but water is free! It’s just on the other side of the room…)

And if you want to do both Prom and socialize? Not to worry, the door between the ballrooms will be open for easy migration between the two rooms.

The Grand Ballroom will be open until 1 am, so come on by and hang out!

Love,
Team Skepticon

PS – We know, we’re a borked record… Register! Donate! Get donations matched! Please! Thank you!

Extra Special Prom DJ!

Hey Skeptidancers!

Our SkeptiProm is always rockin’, but this year we have an extra special DJ — Victor Harris Jr! The man is a marvel — He’s not only a DJ, he’s known for his fantastic poetry, and he makes cheesecakes that we have heard are a-maze-ing!

We are so excited that Victor offered this opportunity to us and hope that you’re as excited as we are!

Click here for more information about SkeptiProm

And don’t forget to see Victor’s talk on Sunday at 2 pm!

Love,
Team Skepticon

PS – The usual reminders! Please register so we can make sure we get enough stuff for everyone! Please donate if you can — we have a matching challenge active now through November 10, where all donations will be matched, up to $5,000!!!

Childcare at #SK9

Don’t forget about our super matching fundraiser! Your donations will be matched dollar for dollar! Click here to donate. Also, don’t forget to register!

Hi Skepti-parents!

Many of you have asked for childcare to be available at Skepticon. We tried to make that happen for this year, but we were unsuccessful.

However! We do have an option for you. We have 2 adjoining conference rooms that will be assigned as the kids’ rooms. They are the Kalahari Room and the Mojave Room, above and behind the Fire & Ice restaurant (click here for hotel map.)

The Kalahari Room will be left empty for free play. It’s fairly large, so kids could actually run around a little. The Mojave Room will be set up with tables and chairs. Skepticon will provide some crayons, coloring books, blank paper, dinosaur stickers, Play Doh (dollar store version), and whatever else we come across that looks like fun (and that fits our budget!) Please feel free to bring toys and activities to share, but please know Skepticon will not be responsible for lost, stolen, or damaged items. We are also looking for a laptop that we can plug into the hotel’s projector system so the kids can watch movies on a big screen. It is very possible that we could even have the main stage live stream showing. Both rooms will be open Friday 8 am ­to 11 pm, Saturday 9 am to Midnight, and Sunday 9 am to 4 pm.

The one thing we don’t have is people to supervise the kids. We came across a Facebook conversation where parents were discussing how they manage kids at cons, and several said they work with other parents to do trade-off supervision — one parent watches the kids while the other goes to the talk. While this is not the most ideal situation, we hope that the Skepticon parents can work together to help each other out. Please, do not leave children unattended in the rooms! We will leave some things in the room that might help with scheduling of shifts, and suggestions are always welcome at [email protected]

We will keep trying to find childcare for future Skepticons, but hope that by providing a space for the kids, it will encourage everyone to come out for SK9!

Love,
Team Skepticon

Another Donations Matching Challenge!

Whoa nelly, Skepticon friends, have we got a whopper of a matching challenge for you!

We have an anonymous donor who will match up to $5,000. Yes, you read that correctly, FIVE THOUSAND DOLLARS.

We were shocked. Flabbergasted even. We may have swooned slightly. And then we thanked them profusely!

So here’s the deal: The matching challenge starts today, and goes until November 10 or until the match is met. The donors will match your donations dollar for dollar. If this challenge goes to the full amount, Skepticon will receive a total of $10,000.

And it couldn’t come at a better time. As we’ve been saying, fundraising has been low this year (apparently election years are more difficult?) We have received enough donations to date that we could afford the conference basics, but only after making some painful cuts. With the money that we hope comes in, we will be able to afford Prom and all the other little activities we have planned. Then we’ll put down the deposit for SK10. Anything after that is a buffer in our bank account (which greatly reduces our stress levels!)

So we know we’ve been very persistently asking for donations this year, but this time we mean it more than we ever have before…

PLEASE CLICK HERE TO DONATE!!

Every dollar really does help, and even little amounts add up quickly! Let’s see if we can make it all the way to that $5,000 limit!!

And even though our donor wants to stay anonymous, that doesn’t mean we can’t send out a dinosaur sized

THANK YOU!!

 

Love,
Team Skepticon

PS — While you’re at it, click here to register if you know you’re coming to SK9, or even if you just think you are! It really helps with our planning.

SkeptiProm Info!

Howdy Skepti-people!

SkeptiProm will be making it’s third appearance on Saturday, November 12 from 9:30 pm to 1 am!

Prom has been a fantastic addition to Skepticon, hasn’t it? Team Skepticon certainly thinks so, and we’re so glad we can put it on again this year! But we know that some of our attendees weren’t able to enjoy SkeptiProm as much as they could have, or couldn’t even attend at all.

We heard from several attendees that the flashing lights were a serious problem for people with light sensitivities. We can fix that — we’re working with the lighting guy to make sure the lights are pretty but not problematic.

We also heard that the ear plugs were difficult (impossible) to find. Problem solved — they will be available right at the door. Last year, they were available at the merchandise booth… You did know we had a merch booth at Prom, right? No? Well, hm…

Hey! We have a merch booth at Prom! We have crowns and tiaras and other fun stuff to make you all fancy. Prices are super low (a crown for a quarter? Such a deal!) so bring some spare change or your credit card, and get some super Prom swag. The merchandise booth is located next to the photo booth. Which brings us to…

Make sure you come by the photo booth and get your obligatory Prom picture! The fantastic photographer Josiah Mannion will be on hand to take your picture, so make sure you bring your camera! We have lots of props for you to pose with, and a one-of-a-kind backdrop. And for those of you who were there last year — we promise we’ll have better lighting this year!

Finally, we’ll have a cash bar available right there in the Paradise Ballroom, with 4 bartenders just waiting to serve you some liquid refreshment, either alcoholic or non. And since dancing and talking makes one thirsty, we’ll have a water station available near-ish the dance floor.

And don’t forget, Prom is for everyone — it doesn’t matter whether you’re in fancy dress or shorts and t-shirt, as long as you’re enjoying yourself! We’re looking forward to letting our hair down and getting our groove on, and hope to see you there!

Love,
Team Skepticon

PS — Reminders! Please register if you know, or even just think, you’re coming to Skepticon. It helps us with our planning! And please donate if you can, that also helps with our planning! :D

Community: Food Pantry!

Hi Skepticon people!

Last year, we had a Food Pantry, and it phenomenally successful. So, of course, we’re having it again!

Where: Lobby of the main hall

Why: Our attendees should not go hungry just because they are financially disadvantaged, and because our attendees are incredibly generous to their fellow attendees

How: The hotel is awesome, and gives us a microwave and an urn of hot water. We will not have access to a way to keep things cold.

If you are able, please bring items to donate to the Food Pantry! For each item you bring, you will receive 1 free raffle ticket (limit 5 tickets.) Good food to bring: Fresh or canned/packaged fruit; ready-to-eat soups (not condensed); chili; “instant” foods like Cup-a-Noodles, mac & cheese cups, etc; single serving peanut butter & crackers, cheese & crackers, tuna or chicken salad & crackers, etc; single serving packages of snack foods: dried fruit, raisins, cereal, nuts, trail mix, crackers, jerky, etc; granola bars; oatmeal or Cream of Wheat packets. Also needed are paper bowls (not styrofoam, they melt in the microwave), plastic spoons and forks, and napkins or paper towels. If you’re able to accommodate dietary restrictions such as vegetarian or vegan, gluten-free, diabetic, etc, that would be super awesome. If you donate a special item, please notify us when you drop off so we can set it aside for someone who needs such an item.

If you are hungry, please come by for a snack or a meal. No questions are asked, the Food Pantry is open if you need it. As long as the doors to the conference center are open, the Food Pantry is available (e.g., late into the night Friday and Saturday.)

At the end of the conference, any food left over is offered to the Skepticon community to take home. Anything left after that is donated to Ozarks Food Harvest.

Skepticon loves all our attendees, and we want you to be happy! This is just a little way that we can help get you there.

Love,
Team Skepticon

PS – Donating food items is amazingly awesome. Donating money is too. Do what you can!

Activities: Raffle!

Hey Skepticoneers!

Our fundraising may be slower and lower than we need, but that doesn’t mean we won’t have fun at Skepticon! So many of our activities cost Skepticon nothing or very little, but add so much to the event.

The next activity we would like to announce is our raffle! Last year was our first year doing this, and it was fantastically successful and so much fun!

This is your chance to win exclusive Skepticon items, fun stuff we found, and even an item signed by the speakers!

Tickets will be $1 each or 6 for $5. You can also receive free tickets by donating items to the Food Pantry (limit 5 tickets) (and stay tuned for an announcement about the Food Pantry!)

The raffle will be held in the lobby outside the main hall. There will be 2 separate raffles: Saturday 10 am – 7 pm, winners announced at 8 pm; and Sunday 10 am – 2 pm, winners announced at 3 pm. Come by Friday to see a preview of some of the items!

Do you have something that is science/atheist/dinosaur related that you want to donate to Skepticon to raffle off? Email Bluebecca at [email protected]! Pictures of the item(s) would be appreciated :)

Love,
Team Skepticon

PS – The raffle proceeds help us offset some of the conference costs, but not all of them! Donate if you can!