Programming is nearly done for OryCon24. So now I can rant freely!
Wherever you see a panel description start with WorkShop or SM (Small Group) it means that the panel is limited in size, and you need to sign-up for the panel before hand in the greenroom. Any hands on panels like the soldering, or mask making panels, supplies will be provided by the convention. However, on the mask making panels, it has been noted that if you want a certain look, bringing in your own scrap material is a good idea.
We are not having a masquerade this year. But we are having a masked ball. Which means you don't get to sit in the audience dressed like a mundane while others do the work! Bring a costume this year! The conventions pros will be members of the human Embassy -- the rest of us are aliens. Let your imagination go!! There will be wandering judges giving out prizes for costumes and a photo area.
For the Science track this year we have guest speakers from TransOrbital (http://www.transorbital.net/) to talk about their company's approval from the US government to land on the moon.
We also have two guests from the Oregon L5 Society (http://www.oregonl5.org) to lecture on the SETI program and Meteors.
This year the number of folks sending in manuscripts dropped, perhaps you didn't know that OryCon sponsors several writers workshops -- where if you send in samples of your writing before the convention, actual pros will go over it with you and give helpful hints. There are several panels and small workshops on different types of writing. If you are interested in this sort of thing, keep a look-out on next year's website for a posting of the rules and deadlines. OryCon also funds a writer's scholarship to the Clarion workshops. This is a literary con and we want to turn our entire membership into writers as well as readers of SF and fantasy work.
Another change of tradition, Heather Alexander's concert is not early Sunday morning, so all the tired filkers who've been up til 4am don't have to get out of bed so early. Heather's concert will be at 2:30pm Sunday in the ballroom.
If you don't like the program feel free to come by and complain -- but complaining is not a free activity covered by your convention membership.