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 * SF Bay Area: Aahz

Barring a surprising change in Python's growth, PyCon 2006 will be too large for GWU's facilities. The 2005 conference will therefore be the last one at GWU.

The larger the venue, the further in advance we need to book it, so we should regard 2006 venue choice as an immediate problem, rather than waiting until it's too late.

Since venues typically book up to 18 months in advance, you might argue we are already too late, and I wouldn't disagree. Typically we should expect to be doing long-range planning 18-24 months in advance.

First let's try to establish some ground rules. Before we start to advocate particular venues, let's all try to agree on what we'd like from an ideal venue. The hope is that this can be incorporated into some kind of "scoresheet" that those who visit potential venues can use to report back - preferably to the pycon-organizers list, with a summary here.

Desirable Venue Characteristics

  • Close to public transport. We are interpreting this to mean within a five-minute walk of a Metro station, with no obstacles to wheelchair-bound or otherwise disabled delegates.
  • Convenient for low-cost accommodation. Not necessarily in the immediate vicinity, but if not then we'd need to establish such accommodation and the route(s) to it. Low-cost can be defined as under $60 per night (although I'll accept arguments on this).
  • Able to handle at least 1,000 delegates. This might seem like an extreme upper limit, but it would be nice to avoid the venue selection exercise becoming an annual event.
  • Low-cost, so that PyCon will continue to make money. If the venue cost is going to rise dramatically, then it would be better to limit attendance to PyCon. Can we put a number on this? "Low-cost" is a bit vague, although clearly desirable -- sh In addition, some people think that "make money" is not a desirable characteristic. --Aahz

  • Facilities support must be comparable or better than what you have at GWU. Plus be aware that the cost of catering, networking, equipment, etc. could be significant additional costs beyond the base venue. as they were for the first two events, but yes, they clearly have to be budgeted -- sh

  • Venue must support sprints before or after the conference or we need another venue to hold the sprints.
  • Venue must allow for sessions in the evening for the annual PSF meeting, BOFs, etc.
  • When eventually the venue does change, does it have to stay in the DC area or do we want to start moving PyCon around? There's nothing carved in stone, but close to DC means we can predict attendance based on past history more easily. I would really like for PyCon to move, because right now you are losing all the people for whom, for whatever reason, cannot or will not go to D.C. And there is no reason to assume that these people are smaller in number than the people who will not attend if we move it from D.C. or indeed that the _D.C. or lose me_crowd is any more desirable than the _West Coast or lose me_ crowd or any other such. Arguing that OSCON is on the west coast is besides the point, since OSCON is so expensive. The current membership of PyCon organisers 2004 may be terrily biased in liking D.C., because people do tend to volunteer for 'around home'. The people who dislike D.C. may be entirely off the radar. lac

  • I want a demo-room, for people who want to give demos. I'd like a little more formal structure backing this -- certainly one can use Open Space for demos, and we did, but I think there would be more demos if it had its own independent and formal structure. --lac

  • room for tutorial sessions. aside from this, no 'ballroom' like rooms for sessions.
  • At least one (and preferably more than one) of the organizers must be close to this city; it's useful to have a person on the ground.

Organizer locations

  • DC/Baltimore: Steve Holden, Andrew Kuchling, Neal Norwitz
  • SF Bay Area: Aahz
  • Add your name and location here!

City suggestions

East coast:

  • Washington DC
  • Baltimore
  • Boston
  • New York
  • Somewhere Southern? (e.g. Atlanta)

Midwest:

  • Chicago
  • Minneapolis

West coast:

  • ???

Canada:

  • Montreal
  • Ottawa
  • Vancouver

Preliminary DC-area surveys

Please add information here that you have obtained from specific venues. Where possible please include contact details for your sources of information, and add your own identity.

  • The Inn and Conference Center (University of Maryland University College)
    • Contact Tim Ultenbern (301-985-7855).
    • Auditorium supports 750 people.
    • Foodservice available in hallway or in main ballroom.
    • Flexible catering.
    • 3 Floors of meeting rooms ranging in sizes from small to large.
    • Available March 21 - 25, with sprints and/or open space rooms available 2 days before and/or after.
    • Cost is $85 per person per day, which includes rooms, beverages (coffee and soda), AV, lunch, service charges, and parking.
    • Rooms available for reservation.
    • Wireless complimentary in public areas (hallways), and to get a line into each meeting room we'd need $175 per line per day. We can install our own switch and/or 802.11 access point.
  • Stamp Student Union (University of Maryland College Park)
    • Contact Paul Prescott (301-314-7881) or Stamp Student Union (ask for reservations: 301-314-3375)
    • Grand ballroom supports 800 people, auditorium style
    • Hoff theatre supports 500 people
    • Food is catered (same as UMUC above)
    • The food outlets in basement are closed during spring break
    • There are rooms that hold 100 - 250 people, including the colony ballroom
    • Recommended talking to UMUC, as it is more self contained and perhaps more appropriate. Am waiting on a callback from Stamp Union.
  • Colorado State University, Fort Collins, Colorado
    • Contact Craig Sommer (970-491-6222)

Thank you for visiting our website and for your interest in Colorado State University as a potential site for your conference. Since we do not have sleeping rooms available in March or April, we can only offer dates in the summer. Potential times that we could host your program in 2005 are late June/early July or possibly early August.

Although our 2005 rates are not yet available, I would not expect an increase of more than 3 or 4%, and it might not even come to that. A 2004 rate of $56.75 per person per day would include: * lodging (double occupancy) * 3 meals * use of meeting facilities * support services (see attached Adult Package Plan) * use of the Student Recreation Center * campus parking * all applicable taxes.

Lodging Campus lodging would be in a residence hall utilizing suite-type arrangements. Each room has two twin beds, closets, drawers, telephone, and a vanity with a sink. Two rooms are joined by a shared bathroom. Rates include linens, towel sets, pillows, blankets, beverage cups, daily maid service, and all applicable taxes. High speed internet access is also included. Although the residence halls are not air conditioned, large sliding windows and generally cool evenings usually provide for comfortable sleeping. Residence halls are a pleasant 5 to 10 minute walk from meeting rooms at Lory Student Center. Standard check in time is 4:00 PM and standard check out time is 10:00 AM.

Again using 2004 rates, the same package but with single occupancy lodging would be $75.40 per person per day. A new hall with air conditioned rooms may also be available, and the rate should be about $59-60 per person per day for the double occupancy package.

Food Service Campus food service is through a residence hall cafeteria. Service is characterized by unlimited selection and return privileges. Although not included in the quoted fees, special meals such as outdoor barbecues are available for nominal additional fees. Extensive catering services are also available both in the residence halls and in the meeting facilities.

Meeting Facilities The meeting space for your program would be in Lory Student Center. With more than 300,000 square feet of floor space, the Student Center has over 50,000 square feet dedicated to 25 meeting rooms, five ballrooms, a 650 seat theater, and related meeting space. Other Center amenities utilized heavily by conferences include the University Bookstore, a full service copy center, several large open lounges, a hair salon, a floral shop, a travel agency, several ATM's, and a variety of food service outlets. Internet connections are readily available--we would just need to discuss your specific requirements.

Support Services Our Adult Package Plan, which is included in the sample rate illustration, features a professional coordinator from this office as your single contact for all University facilities and services. Please refer to the attached copy of the Adult Package Plan for details. For a nominal additional fee, the Office of Conference Services offers advance and on-site registration and full accounting services.

Recreation The package includes use of the Student Recreation Center. Facilities include indoor and outdoor basketball and volleyball courts, a ten-lane, 25-yard swimming pool, a spa, a large aerobics room, an eighth-mile indoor track, and an extensive weight and exercise room. Use of these facilities is on a shared basis with students and with other conference participants.

Parking Our service plans include parking permits valid at lots adjacent to Lory Student Center and at lots next to the residence halls.

Once again, thank you for the opportunity to present this proposal. Please call or email me with any questions. I will look forward to your response.

Craig Sommer, Director Office of Conference Services Colorado State University Fort Collins, CO 80523-8037 Phone: 970-491-6222 Fax: 970-491-3568 http://www.conferences.colostate.edu/

NAME: Evelyn Mitchell

Other possibilities

Some possible sites:

National Rural Electric Cooperative Association (really!) http://www.conferencesolution.com/ (Arlington, up to 750)

Marymount U.: http://www.marymount.edu/confcenter/main.html (Arlington, up to 750, but only available from May to August 1st),

DoubleTree Tysons Corner: http://www.doubletree.com/en/dt/hotels/index.jhtml?ctyhocn=IADLRDT (largest room is 600; calls itself "executive", so probably pricy).

4H Center, Chevy Chase, Maryland http://www.4hcenter.org/index.html (up to 800, but specializing in youth conferences; has 800 beds available, though)

Hilton Mark Center, Alexandria http://www.hilton.com/en/hi/hotels/index.jhtml?ctyhocn=DCAAHHH (largest room seats 1200; this is where Python10 was held; forget about mass transit, though).

Baltimore Conference Center http://www.bccenter.org

Other Related Events and Questions

  • OSCON will likely stay on the West coast though this might be the last year for Portland.
  • I think Paul Prescod is considering having a West coast Python event. How does this relate?

    Not at all, though I've suggested "PyCON West" a couple of times.


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