SMOFcon, the annual convention for people who run SF conventions, is taking place in Amsterdam this weekend. Kevin and I had memberships, but neither of us could afford to go. Consequently news from the convention is a little light. (Some SMOFs take the “secret” thing much too seriously.) However, thanks to whoever is behind the Chicon 7 Twitter feed (Dave, Helen?), and the hard-working Petrea Mitchell, I do have some news on Worldcon bids.
The big news is an official bid for Montréal for 2019. René Walling presented it, so this is serious. Presumably René will have help from many of the people who worked for him in 2009, and they’ll all be a lot more experienced now.
The bid everyone is talking about, however, is Mariehamn in 2016. This is the location of Åcon, a small Finnish convention that I hope to finally get to visit next year if I can find the money. The bid was presented by the indefatigable Eemeli Aro, who is well known in Finnish fandom for his ambition to run a Worldcon. I suspect that when he gets home they’ll sit him on the furnace in a sauna until he repents his foolishness. I’m certainly not backing the bid without hearing from anyone else because I want to be allowed back into Finland.
Of course a bid for a Finnish location would be a lot of fun, and will give people practice at working with Finnish fans. But I don’t think that the Kansas City folks should be too worried. (Update: see comments, the Mariehamn bid is indeed non-serious.)
Finally there was an announcement of a bid for a Boston to be held at Christmas in 2020. This is a hoax bid. If anyone from Boston says otherwise then the New Zealand committee will send a few large rugby players around to see them.
So the current state of bids is as follows: