By now many of you are wondering what to expect from TsunamiCon this year, and why the long silence. With the deepest apologies for our lack of communication, I will now be addressing that question as completely as possible.
For the past three years, our convention has called the Wichita Scottish Rite in downtown Wichita our home. The Scottish Rite is a beautiful venue with a great deal of available space, and we had long hoped to continue growing into the nooks and crannies of the building as the convention grew from year to year. Alas, this was not to be. As you may or may not have heard, the building changed hands this year, and it is this event that lies at the heart of our delay in announcing this year’s convention.
A change of ownership of such a massive and expensive piece of property inevitably required some patience on our part as we attempted to negotiate a contract for 2019. I have every confidence that the new owners will find great success in the utilization of their event space in the years ahead, but after a few months of semi-regular discourse on the matter we were simply unable to negotiate an agreement that would serve their needs in the use of their property and the needs of the convention and our attendees. Ultimately, remaining at the property would have increased our costs considerably, and we had no guarantee that we could meet their requirements in the time frame available. With a heavy heart, I resigned myself to the idea that we would need to shop the convention around to other venues once again.
In the five years since our first convention, of course, the landscape for local events has flourished and shifted. Inevitably, this created new challenges in attempting to book an alternative venue at such a late date. I proceeded with two basic priorities: that I could retain the services of a sufficient venue in early to mid-October, and that I could negotiate a fee structure that would allow us to best serve our community and still throw one hell of an event at the 11th hour. Local bookings on our priority weekends were understandably scarce, and costs varied wildly from venue to venue.
I am pleased to announce that a community very close to our recent efforts has kindly opened its doors and offered a solution that meets both needs. With the quirky sense of irony that often seems to follow us around, we will be moving this year’s event across the street to the Midian Shrine Center and scheduling the event for October 18th thru 20th. Much like when we moved to the Scottish Rite, the layout of their venue provides some different challenges and new opportunities, and I am excited to see how it comes together and grateful for their enthusiastic hospitality.
Again, I apologize for the long delay. The wait is over, and it’s time to plan our event in earnest. Now we need to make up for lost time. I do intend to run a short Kickstarter campaign, as I’ve received numerous questions about it and it’s always proven to be a good venue for spreading the word about our con, so keep your eye out for that announcement and please help spread the word. Also, as I need capital to help build materials for upcoming events and begin the process of updating our signage and promotional tools, I will offer a limited discount price on early VIGs if you’d like to pick them up now.
For everyone who has continued to echo their support for the con and kept reaching out to me for updates, I can’t thank you enough for helping keep TsunamiCon alive in our hearts. Sometimes these kinds of challenges can seem a little overwhelming, and I always seemed to find a kind word or anxious query at exactly the moment I needed it to keep focused on the event. I appreciate your faith, and I hope you’ll help me make this year’s event as fun and fulfilling as possible.
Sincerely and with the utmost humility,