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Revision as of 12:35, 17 June 2017

Con†Stellation XXXV: Horologium (The Clock)

13–15 October 2017——Huntsville, Alabama

GoH: Mary Robinette Kowal      Artist GoH: David O. Miller      MC: Toni Weisskopf

The final Con†Stellation is over 🙁
We will be transforming this into a history site
Please bear with us as that transition will take some time

Welcome to the website for Con†Stellation, an annual general interest Science Fiction & Fantasy convention(←What's That?) in Huntsville Alabama. Con†Stellation (or Con*Stellation) is an annual, fan-run, general-interest science fiction & fantasy convention sponsored by NASFA—the North Alabama Science Fiction Association. The next con—Con†Stellation XXXV: Horologium—will be 13–15 October 2017.

This site will always be a work in progress and will be updated as details of the 2017 convention are firmed up (so please come back often!). If you can't readily find the info you need, please see our Contact Info below to get in touch. You can also follow us on Twitter @Con_Stellation.

NOTE: Please check out our new Accessibility page.

Contents

Con†Stellation 2017

Con†Stellation XXXV: Horologium (The Clock) will held at 13–15 October 2017 at the Four Points by Sheraton Huntsville Airport located onsite at the Huntsville International Airport (HSV) :

Four Points, Huntsville Airport
1000 Glenn Hearn Boulevard SW
Huntsville, AL, 35824

For free parking, please remember to park in Hotel Parking (not regular airport parking). There are signs to follow when arriving at the airport. Bring the ticket you get when entering this lot to the hotel desk and show your convention badge to get validated for free parking. For further parking info, see the Accessibility page.

Why Horologium?

Each year, Con†Stellation chooses an astronomical constellation as a subtitle to be used for just that year.

From our co-con chairs:
"Why did we pick Horologium? Because it was perfect. One of the first things we did as the con chairs for 2017 was to evaluate the future of Con†Stellation, and we came to the conclusion that it was time to say goodbye. We brought the suggestion to the club and they agreed. Now the pressure was on to pick the best constellation and we found Horologium, the clock. What better constellation to choose than one that is counting down with us to the last Con†Stellation. So even though there is a lot of sadness to this being the last Con†Stellation, there is also a sense of excitement and celebration, and we hope that when the 'time' comes, we will see you there to help us celebrate and go out with a bang."

Registration Rates & Info

See the convention contact info below for a postal address to mail your registration. You can also email registration@con-stellation.org if you need more info.

Adult Membership(←What's That?) rate:

$50 through July 16, 2017
The rate after that date will be announced later

Child and Young Adult Rates: Rates for children (though age 12) are fixed regardless of when they are purchased.

Ages 0 to 3 (as of October 13, 2017): Free
Ages 4 to 12 (as of October 13, 2017): $25

Children not accompanied by an Adult Member will be charged the Young Adult Membership rate.

Young Adult Memberships (students age 13-21, as of October 13, 2017) are $5 off the corresponding Adult Membership in effect at the time of purchase. We trust you (we really, really do) but we reserve the right to request a Student ID or some other proof of student status.

For our policy regarding memberships for caretakers, please see the Accessibility page.

Registration Payment

To pay online (PayPal) please click here (opens on a separate page or tab). Note that you do not have to PayPal account to use that service.
To pay by postal mail send your info (name(s), address, email address, ages (for YA & child rates)) along with your payment (check) to the convention PO Box. See the convention contact info below for the address.

Guests

photo by Fabrizio Verrecchia via Unsplash.com
Main Article: Con†Stellation Guests
Select the above Main Article for information on each guest.
We only post confirmed guests, so check back often for updates—there are almost always several invitations outstanding.

Guests of Honor for 2017

Guest of Honor: Mary Robinette Kowal
Artist Guest of Honor: David O. Miller
Mistress of Ceremonies: Toni Weisskopf

Returning Prior Guests of Honor

Dates listed with each returning prior GoH are for each prior year when they were a Guest of Honor, MC, or Special Guest. Several of them also attended the convention and participated in programming for multiple other years.

Orson Scott Card (GoH 1986 & 2015)
Randy Cleary (AGoH 1997)
David Drake (GoH 2006)
Les Johnson (MC 1997)
Theresa Mather (AGoH 2006)
Mark Maxwell (AGoH 1984)
David O. Miller (AGoH 1993, FGoH 1998)
Stephanie Osborn (MC 2011–2013, Sci. Guest 2016)
Stanley Schmidt (GoH 1996)
Toni Weisskopf (MC 1991, FGoH 2012)
"Uncle Timmy" Bolgeo (FGoH 1984)
Maurine Dorris (FGoH 1984)
Anita Feller (FGoH 1999)
Tom Feller (FGoH 1999)
Steve Francis (FGoH 2001)
Sue Francis (FGoH 2001)
Marcia McCoy Illingworth (FGoH 1993)
Darrell "Doc" Osborn (FGoH 2013)
Gary Shelton (FGoH 2009)
Sue Thorn (FGoH 1994)
Adrian Washburn (FGoH 1995)

Also Expected to Attend

Julie Cochrane, Louise Herring-Jones, Bryan Jones, Darrell "Doc" Osborn, Dan Thompson, and Wes Yahola

Hotel

Four Points, Huntsville Airport

We are returning in 2017 to the Four Points by Sheraton Huntsville Airport—a Starwood hotel. The hotel is located in the Huntsville International Airport, with hotel reception and most of the function space on the first and second floors and the sleeping rooms stacked above the airport arrival/departure areas. It is conveniently located immediately off of I-565 in the western part of the Huntsville Metro Area—click here for a Google Map. For info regarding accessibility features of the Four Points, please see our Accessibility page.

The Grille Lounge

Reserve Your Room (Now!)

Standard rooms (king or double-double) are $92 (+taxes). A limited number of Jacuzzi and Corner King rooms may be available for a nightly upcharge.

  • You can make your hotel reservation online starting at this Starwood website
  • Or you can call the hotel directly at 256-772-9661 to make a reservation

The hotel website is also a good place to learn about the hotel, get driving directions, etc.

Hotel Restaurant

Parking

Parking in the hotel parking lot is free for all convention members—just bring your parking ticket and convention badge to the hotel desk to get the ticket validated. If you want free parking, please be careful not to park in airport parking (short term or long term). The entrances for the various parking lots are close together so watch the signs carefully. For further parking info, see the Accessibility page.

Con†Stellation T-Shirts & Polos
Info Updated; Orders Open Soon (we hope)

Much info for Con†Stellation XXXV: Horologium T-Shirts is available, though we are not yet ready to take orders. The art will once again by by David O. Miller, who has done the art for most of our T-Shirts over the decades. You can see examples of his work for us on the T-Shirt Retrospective page. (Caution: as of this writing on 13 June 2017, some parts of that page were out of date—please do not attempt to order your shirt via that page.)

We expect that 2017 T-shirt sales will be by:

Pre-orders to be paid pre-con and picked up at the con (or shipped at your expense), and
Orders at the convention to be shipped to you (post con) at your expense.

Available Styles, Colors, and Sizes

T-Shirt Details:

Cost: $16
Sizes: S-5XL
Art on front only
Colors:
Black Dark (smoky)
Grey
Purple  
Red Dark Pink Maroon Tangerine
Galapagos Blue
(teal)
Royal Blue Forest (dark)
Green
Kelly Green

Polo Shirt Details:

Cost: $25
Sizes: S-2XL
Art can be on the front or back of the shirt
Color: Navy Blue only


Art Show & Auction

photo by Heather Zabriskie via Unsplash.com
Main Article: Con†Stellation Art Show
Select the above Main Article for full information on the Art Show, Print Shop, and Auction—including information about selling your art at the convention.

Buying and Selling Art

Con†Stellation's annual Art Show, Print Shop, and Auction brings together science fiction, fantasy, or fandom-related art from both professional and amateur artists. We want you to enjoy just looking at the art, but we're happy to say that all the artwork in the Print Shop and the large majority of that on display in the Art Show will be for sale. Please click through for complete info on how to:

Art Show Contact Info

The contact info for our Art Show director is:

Con†Stellation Art Show
c/o Randy B. Cleary
8000 Madison Blvd., Ste. D102 PMB 173
Madison AL 35758-2003
or by email to:
art.show@con-stellation.org


Dealers Room

Author Table

Most of the authors attending Con†Stellation XXXV will be selling their own books at an Author Table in the Dealers Room. Authors will have use of the table as their schedule permits, so you'll want to check the Dealers Room often to see who is there and selling.

List of Dealers

NOTE: The Dealers Room at Con†Stellation XXXV is currently full, with a short standby list in case of cancellations. We may be able to add you to the standby list—see the Contacts section of this page, below if you're interested.

As of 18 February 2017 the following dealers will be at Con†Stellation XXXV.

Karen Boyd, A.B. Tales Collectibles A.B. Tales on Facebook
Loren Damewood, Golden Knots Custom jewelry Golden Knots website
Marcia Illingworth, Magpie Curios Jewelry & collectibles
Laura & Russell Peterson, Sci-Fi Collectables What it says in the name Sci-Fi Collectables website
David Willoughby Used/collectible books
Natalie Young Custom glasswork Facebook page

Also, you may want to check out Theresa Mather's table in the Art Show.

Programming

While planning for 2017 programming has already begun, it will be much closer to the convention before a draft schedule is available. Meanwhile, if you'd like to see last year's program to get an idea on the kind of things we've done before, you can check out this link (2016 PDF file). That was the final pre-con draft for 2016.

KandyKlatsches

One thing that will be back in 2017 is Con†Stellation's version of small-group meetings with some of our guests. Perhaps you've been to a KaffeeKlatsch at a convention before? If not, the short definition is a gathering with a convention guest and a small group of fans, drinking coffee (or tea, or...) and chatting. Starting in 2012 we put out our own spin on that; providing candy instead of coffee. Success! (Yes, there is strategy involved—you might be ill advised to put a piece of toffee in your mouth just before you want to ask a question.)

You will have to sign up at the convention for these events. There may be a limit on how many KandyKlatsches each convention member can sign up for, and there will be a limit on the number of people in each KandyKlatsch. Details of signup (including times available) will be available at the convention. Signup will be at convention registration during special hours to be posted at the con.

And Cake Too!

The Huntsville Area Science Fiction Writers Group and Cake Appreciation Society will also be back at Co†Stellation XXXV with their ("Patent Pending" 😀) mixture of readings and cake. Satisfy both your hunger for good fiction and your sweet tooth at the same time.

Masquerade (sadly, not)

Sadly, we have found that there is just not enough support for a traditional Masquerade at a medium-to-small convention like Con†Stellation. That doesn't mean you should leave your costumes at home, though you might want to put emphasis on those that are comfortable to wear while doing other stuff at the con.

Gaming

The Game Room is always a big part of Con†Stellation. Plans for 2017 are just beginning and will be posted here as they are firmed up.

Want to Run a Game?

If you want to run a game/tournament in the Game Room at Con†Stellation please email gaming@con-stellation.org to start the discussion. You can also send snail mail to the convention address below, marking your missive Attention: Game Master.

Open Gaming

There will also be room for pickup in the Game Room—bring your own game(s) or check out one of the many games that should be available for your use.

Killer Cutthroat Spades Tournament

A Nice Friendly
Game of Cards™

Do you play spades and play to win? If so, have we got a deal for you! Killer Cutthroat Spades is a variant on no-partner spades with severe penalties for sandbagging, thus putting extra emphasis on both accurate bidding and sharp gameplay. What do you get if you win? Mostly bragging rights—no small thing in this neck of the woods! Never played Killer Cutthroat Spades before? No problem, we'll help. (Seriously, we actually will help. We love introducing the game to new folks. Some experience playing spades, bridge, or some other bid-and-trick based game is helpful, but not necessary. We can pretty much always round up enough players to teach you at a non-tournament game before you go swimming with the sharks.)

You can sign up at the door or contact "Uncle Timmy" by email <tbolgeo@epbfi.com> to get on the list.

2017 Charity

Huntsville-Madison County Public Library

Each year Con†Stellation chooses a charity and engages in fundraising activities at the convention, in particular selling donated art and other items in the Art Show & Auction. We're happy to report that for the second year in a row we've selected the Huntsville-Madison County Public Library. Many residents of the Huntsville metro area are familiar with the downtown "Fort Book" location, but may not be fully aware that there are a dozen locations all over Madison County (including in the cities/towns of Gurley, Hazel Green, Madison, New Hope, and Triana in addition to the eponymous Huntsville locations).

Donations

If you wish to make a donation of items for the Charity Auction (to be held in conjunction with the Art Auction), please bring it to the Art Show at the convention, or see the Art Show & Auction section of this page, above, for mailing information.

Con Suite

Our Convention Hospitality Suite (Con Suite(←What's That?) in the usual parlance) is one of the highlights of Con†Stellation. You'll certainly find the usual Con Suite munchies and soft drinks, but you'll also find more hearty fare at numerous times all through the con. Just ask anyone who's been to one of our conventions and you'll likely hear high praise. For further info on the Con Suite and on other food options in the hotel, please see our Accessibility page.

Volunteering

As a fan-run convention, Con†Stellation is run entirely by volunteers and we would like you to join us. We need people with various levels of convention experience, including none. We have to keep a lot of balls in the air to make a convention work; could you lend a hand (or two)? See our email or snailmail addresses below to let us know that you are interested in helping out! If you email, please include Volunteer in your e-mail subject line so that we can direct your request to the right person.

Questions? How to Contact Us

photo by Harry Sandhu via Unsplash.com

Use these methods to contact the convention for registration or to ask a question.

Snailmail

Con*Stellation XXXV: Horologium
P.O. Box 4857
Huntsville AL 35815-4857

Main Email Address

constell@con-stellation.org
It appears as if incoming emails to our main address (above) sometimes bounce.
We try to stay on top of our ISP, but it keeps recurring unpredictably. Meanwhile, if you get a bounce or we do not reply in a timely way, an alternate email address is: constell@earthlink.net

Other Email Addresses

chairs@con-stellation.org for the convention chairs
accessibility@con-stellation.org for the Accessibility coordinator
art.show@con-stellation.org for the Art Show
dealers@con-stellation.org for the Dealers Room
gaming@con-stellation.org for the Game Master

Phone

Google Voicemail: 256-270-0092


NASFA

The North Alabama Science Fiction Association sponsors Con†Stellation. To find out how to join this year-round club, or to get in touch with NASFA about any other matter, please see the External Links section below.

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Con†Stellation History

Main Article: Con†Stellation History

The immediate precursor to Con†Stellation was ZerCon, a two-day convention in November 1981. While planning and executing ZerCon, we came up with the name "Con†Stellation" (or "Con*Stellation") for a planned ongoing series of three-day-weekend conventions.

The first Con†Stellation was held July 16–18, 1982, under the full name Con†Stellation I: The Pleiades. The time of year varied over the first few conventions, though at least one has been held each year since. After the first few years, the convention made the shift from a spring/summer convention to a fall convention. Each Con†Stellation has been subtitled with an astronomical constellation—usually one of the 88 official modern constellations, though the first one was named after an asterism in Taurus. The convention often uses the constellation as a theme in its advertising and for events at the convention.

Con†Stellation has been held at a number of Huntsville-area hotels over its history. Other than Con†Stellation II.V (2.5), each has been a 3-day (Friday to Sunday) event.

Con†Stellation 2012

Main Article: Con†Stellation 2012

Details of Con†Stellation XXXI: Perseus—held 12-14 October 2012 at the Holiday Inn Express in Huntsville AL—can be found at the link above.

Con†Stellation 2013

Main Article: Con†Stellation 2013

Details of Con†Stellation XXXII: Columba—held 11-13 October 2013 at the Holiday Inn Express in Huntsville AL—can be found at the link above.

Con†Stellation 2014

Due to hotel issues (including the closing of the late, lamented Holiday Inn Express), there was no Con†Stellation in 2014.

Con†Stellation 2015

Main Article: Con†Stellation 2015

Details of Con†Stellation XXXIII: Coma Berenices—held 16-18 October 2015 at the Four Points, Huntsville Airport in Huntsville AL—can be found at the link above.

Con†Stellation 2016

Main Article: Con†Stellation 2016

Details of Con†Stellation XXXIV: Mensa (The Table) was held 14–16 October 2016 at the Four Points, Huntsville Airport in Huntsville AL—can be found at the link above.

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Future Conventions

Per current plans, 2017's Con†Stellation XXXV: Horologium (The Clock) will be the last Con†Stellation. NASFA—the North Alabama Science Fiction Association—may still choose to sponsor other conventions or convention-like events in 2018 and forward.

Statement of the 2017 con chairs:

"Why did we pick Horologium? Because it was perfect. One of the first things we did as the con chairs for 2017 was to evaluate the future of Con†Stellation, and we came to the conclusion that it was time to say goodbye. We brought the suggestion to the club and they agreed. Now the pressure was on to pick the best constellation and we found Horologium, the clock. What better constellation to choose than one that is counting down with us to the last Con†Stellation. So even though there is a lot of sadness to this being the last Con†Stellation, there is also a sense of excitement and celebration, and we hope that when the 'time' comes, we will see you there to help us celebrate and go out with a bang."

^Go To Top of Page^

External Links & Fannish Oddities

Other Fannish Stuff in Huntsville

The sponsor of Con†Stellation is the North Alabama Science Fiction Association, aka NASFA—a general-interest science fiction & fantasy club headquartered in Huntsville Alabama. Besides planning and running Con†Stellation, NASFA has monthly meetings that bring together sf/f/h/etc. fans from Huntsville, Madison, and other surrounding areas. Each meeting features both a noisy lively business meeting (which often digresses forays into a variety of sf/f/h/etc. topics) and a program. That latter may feature a regional author, cover a science topic of interest, display some off-the-beaten-track videos, or address almost any aspect of science fiction, fantasy, and related genres. There's also a social aspect to the club, with an "After-The-Meeting Meeting" each month and occasional other events. To find out how to join this year-round club, or to get in touch with NASFA about any other matter, please visit the NASFA website.

Links to Other Conventions, etc.

Main Article: Con†Stellation—External Links

Fannish Oddities

Fannish Food Pyramid
(click pic for larger version)
T-Shirt Retrospective
For the Con†Stellation T-Shirt Retrospective (of David O. Miller's wonderful art) click here.
Fannish Food Pyramid
Fans have long joked that the 4 Fannish(←What's That?) Food Groups are Sugar, Salt, Fat, and Caffeine—or some variation. Some folks, for instance, add, um, adult beverages to that list. Others insist that chocolate is the perfect food. All of this rattled around in various fannish brains at Con†Stellation and the Fannish Food Pyramid (at right) was born. Early versions of this appeared at various Con†Stellation room parties in 2006. This is in its final form (circa 2006-7). This parody is based on the 1990's vintage USDA Food Guide Pyramid.

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Things To Do in Huntsville

Area Guide (last updated for 2016)

It's a short drive from the Four Points Hotel/Airport to the nearest concentration of shopping, restaurants, etc. A revised Area Guide (PDF file) is available for your pre-con perusal. Printed copies will be available at the convention. You can also check out the wider area at www.findmoremadison.com.

A 2017 version of this guide will be published much closer to the convention.

Attractions and Events

We think Huntsville is a great place to visit and hope you do too. This section is somewhat hastily thrown together, but lists at least some of the many attractions you can visit and events you can go to in and around Huntsville while you're in town.

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