FAQs

NOTE: As decisions are made and information becomes available, the FAQs will be modified. To stay up to date, please consult the Updates page which mirrors the official CON.TXT Dreamwidth page. We also maintain the CON.TXT Livejournal, Twitter accounts @contxt_announce for infrequent announcements and @contxt_con for more frequent updates and some fun fannish content, the CON.TXT Tumblr, and the CON.TXT Yahoo!Group.

General Con Info & Registration (expand all)

When is the con?

July 29-31, 2016.

Where is the con?

The Residence Inn Arlington Pentagon City is in Arlington, VA, just south of Washington, D.C. To find out more about the hotel and the area, please see the Hotel & Travel page.

How much does the con cost?

Memberships at the door are $60 per day or $120 for all three days. Admission to Disco Duck will be $20 for non-members (it's free for members, of course!). Membership covers attendance at all con events.

When and how can I register?

Pre-registration was held on the last day of CON.TXT 2014. Online registration was open until July 7th, 2016. If you are not sure if you registered, log in with your email address and password and your registration status for CON.TXT 2016 will be shown.

Registration is still available at the door; come to the con hotel after Thursday evening, July 28th, 2016, and go to the con registration desk.

Do you have day memberships? Or registration at the door?

Single-day memberships and full memberships are offered at the door this year. Come to the con hotel after Thursday evening, July 28th, 2016, and go to the con registration desk.

How do I pay for my membership?

Registration at the door may be paid by check or cash. We do not process credit cards at the registration desk, but you may use PayPal to make an online payment, including credit card payment (which is handled entirely by PayPal; we never see your financial information).

Do you have scholarships or financial assistance?

In the hopes of allowing more fans to attend CON.TXT, we offer several scholarships which cover all or part of the membership fee. For CON.TXT 2016 we had three different types available.

Our Minotaur Scholarship is a memorial scholarship established by the CON.TXT con comm for our friend and fellow fan Minotaur who was known for (among many other fine things) welcoming new fans and encouraging everyone to join in and have fun at fan gatherings and cons. This scholarship awards a full membership to one new fan.

Con or Bust helps people of color/non-white people attend SFF conventions; we are offering two full memberships through this fine organization.

Our Need-based Scholarship is made available partially through donations from fans; we will offer half-price memberships to fans who request them and, if possible, full memberships. Need-based Scholarship recipients are asked to participate in our volunteer program.

What is your cancellation policy?

Attending members who cancel on or before July 7th, 2016, can choose to have their membership fee refunded or roll over credit for their membership fee to CON.TXT 2018, minus a $10 processing fee. After July 7th, 2016, no refunds or rollovers will be available. If you want to cancel, please contact us.

May I transfer my membership?

Yes. If you have a membership but are unable to come to the con, you may transfer your membership to a friend until midnight on July 28, 2016. If you want to transfer your membership, please contact us.

What is your safety policy?

We want CON.TXT to be a safe space for all attendees. If you see activities you think are inconsistent with this goal, the con comm is ready to help. Please note that CON.TXT is a private event, and we reserve the right to refuse admission to any participant at any time for any reason, with no refund of registration fees. For specifics, please review our Code of Conduct and Safety Policy.

How accessible is the con?

We want CON.TXT to be an accessible space for all attendees. We commit to making the entire con natively accessible and to accommodating any specific requests we receive, subject to the limitations of our resources and venue. For specifics, please review our Accessibility page.

May I see a list of the other people who are attending?

Con members will be listed by badge name in the membership area of the site. Each member may choose to be listed publicly or only to other members. Once you are registered you can log in to see the full list of members.

Is there a minimum age for attendance?

Yes. You must be 18 years of age or older at the time of the con in order to attend. By submitting the registration form you are agreeing that you meet this requirement.

May I bring my children to the con?

Convention members may bring children under one year of age into the con suite, hallways, and any other spaces designated as child-friendly. Children are not permitted in panels, the vid show, the dance party, or other events and spaces not designated as child-friendly. Breast-feeding is acceptable anywhere the child is allowed to be.

Children over one year of age are not permitted in con space.

Do you have supporting memberships?

Yes! You can sign up for supporting memberships for $15; this will get you the registration package as well as all of the goodies and member area access that attending members get! For more information go to the Membership page.

Will I be able to come to just one part of the con - like the Disco Duck dance party?

You will always be able to attend just Disco Duck! Bring all of your friends! Admission to Disco Duck is $20 for non-members (free for members, of course, including Saturday day members) and includes admission to the Game Room as well. Come to the con hotel after after 8 pm on July 30th, 2016, and go to the con registration desk.

To attend any other part of the con such as the Fan Fair or the Vid Show, you will need a full membership or a day membership for the day of the event.

Can I preregister now for CON.TXT 2018?

Preregistration will be available for all members on the last day of the con (Sunday, July 31st). Preregistration will be $95 and we will take cash, check, or PayPal. If you have to leave early, you can still preregister online through your Membership page.

Con Events and Programming (expand all)

When will programming start and end?

Formal programming will begin the morning of Friday, July 29, 2016, and end the afternoon of Sunday, July 31, 2016; informal events may take place on Thursday evening before the con when registration opens. As the con approaches and more detailed scheduling information becomes available, it will be announced on the Updates page of this site and our other update channels, and will be set out in detail on the Schedule page.

When will I be able to sign in at the con?

Registration will begin Thursday night between 8 pm and 10 pm; come and mingle in the hotel lobby if you've arrived! We will have games and crafts available.

During the con, the registration desk will be open in the main events area (follow the hallway between the hotel front desk and the elevators).

How can I suggest panel topics? How can I see the topics that have been suggested?

We have finished taking panel topic suggestions for CON.TXT 2016. Thanks everyone who suggested panels and voted for your favorites! You can see the fully armed and operational assembled panel schedule on the schedule page.

Will there be a con suite?

As a matter of fact, there will be two! We will have an Upsuite in the traditional con suite style in a hotel suite with snacks and entertainment and we will have a Downsuite in our traditional ConSweet style in a ballroom near the panel tracks for mingling and arts.

Will there be an art show/auction/raffle/dealers?

Check out our Vendors section for information on all of these!

How does the swap table work?

Bring any fannish goodies you are willing to part with and put them on the swap table. Peruse the goodies others have left, and if you find something you'd like, please leave an appropriate donation for the con charity, Planned Parenthood.

Any fannish memorabilia, including stickers, action figures, notebooks, DVDs, books, magnets, zines, and pretty much anything else you can think of will be welcome. If you think someone else would love it (and you don't want to sell it), this is the spot! Our only exception: please do not bring/leave video tapes, as we've had to dispose of too many in the past.

The small print: If for some reason the stuff you bring is not snapped up by someone else, and you'd like it back, please retrieve it before the end of the Dead Duck panel on Sunday. Anything left at that point will either be tossed, hoarded by Con Comm members, or donated to a local charity. Any zines or convention memorabilia will be donated to the Fan Culture Preservation Project at the University of Iowa Libraries.

Will there be a vid show?

Yes! The vid show will be on Friday night. Check out the vid show page for more information.

Will there be a party?

Yes! We have planned a Saturday night Disco Duck! We'll have appetizers, music, a dance floor, and all sorts of fun. There will be quieter areas, too, if you want to take a break and just sit and talk. And remember, your friends who aren't attending the con can also come to the party for a $20 cover charge. Check the Disco Duck page for the goods on Disco Duck 2016.

Will there be a game night?

Yes! We will have game-show-style Duck Duck Games on Friday night and a Game Room with card and board games on Saturday night. Check the games page for details.

When will the schedule be posted?

Now! Come get all of the details on the Schedule page.

Travel (expand all)

What airport should I fly into?

We recommend flying into Ronald Reagan Washington National Airport (DCA). Extensive information about the airports and your travel options is available in the Getting to DC page of the Hotel & Travel section.

How do I get from the airport/train station/bus station/my friend's house/anywhere else to the hotel?

There are a variety of options available, including the Metro, shuttles, cabs, and driving. For detailed information, consult the Getting to DC and Getting Around pages of the Hotel & Travel section.

How do I arrange a rideshare to or from the con?

Hotel Facilities (expand all)

How much does the hotel cost?

The CON.TXT room rate will be $129 per night. This is a special CON.TXT rate, and it is guaranteed only until July 7th, 2016. We've set aside plenty of kings but only a handful of doubles, so if you want a room with more beds, be sure to reserve early! (We can't repeat it often enough: whether you want a king or a double, reserve your room now - don't wait! If you don't get a room in the con block, you may not be able to stay at the hotel.) You can find more information on the Hotel & Travel page.

How do I reserve a room?

Booking information is posted on the Hotel page in the Hotel & Travel section of the website.

How can I find a roommate?

Is there parking?

Parking in the hotel garage costs $26 a day, with in and out privileges. For more parking options, see Getting Around.

Does the hotel have internet access?

Yes, there is free wireless high-speed internet access in the hotel rooms and common areas.

Around the Hotel (expand all)

What is available near the hotel?

There are many eating and shopping options nearby! You can find a helpful list and a map showing locations in the Neighborhood page in the Hotel & Travel section of the website.

Is there a Metro stop near the hotel?

Yes. The Pentagon City Metro stop, on the Metro blue and yellow lines, is a block from the hotel. For more information about the Metro, see the Getting Around page in the Hotel & Travel section of the website.

How close is the hotel to downtown Washington, D.C.?

You'll be able to see the buildings and monuments from some of the hotel windows! Downtown is just over the Potomac River and easily accessible by Metro; from the Pentagon City Metro stop, L'Enfant Plaza is two stops on the yellow line. You can also make the trip easily by car or cab.

Is Pentagon City close to the Pentagon?

Indeed. The Pentagon is a block away! If you're interested in touring it, be sure to make reservations well in advance.

Vendors (expand all)

So, I hear I can buy cool fannish swag at CON.TXT. How does that work?

In two ways, both of them very exciting!

  1. The Fan Fair is a 3-hour event where con attendees can shop for art, handmade geeky goods, and other fannish items.
  2. The Orphan Table accepts items from fans who have a few things they want to sell, but who don't want their own table (or half-table) in the Fan Fair, or who won't be attending the con. Con volunteers run the table throughout the weekend, and 20 percent of the proceeds will support CON.TXT.

Sounds great! What if I want to sell cool fannish swag at CON.TXT?

Good news! There are two very exciting ways to do that.

  1. You can sign up for a table at the Fan Fair, and sell your items to your fellow con-goers yourself. A full table costs $20 for con members (including day members) and $30 for nonmembers; half-tables are $10 for con members and $20 for nonmembers.
  2. If you don't want your own table at the Fan Fair, you can sell your items via the Orphan Table. Twenty percent of sales will support the con, with the rest going to you. (No items priced under $5, please.)

In past years, there have been vendors selling all weekend long. Why is this year different?

We wanted to structure things so that vendors could have a chance to sell and still attend panels. We know many CON.TXT attendees make incredibly cool things but don't want to spend the whole weekend sitting behind a vendor table. This way more of you will have a chance to share the things you make with your fellow attendees -- without missing the rest of the stuff you come to CON.TXT for.

Awesome, I can finally share my hand-embroidered Star Trek quote wall hangings with the world! Uh, that's something you guys would want for the marketplace, right?

Absolutely! We welcome a wide range of handmade and used goods. If you make fanart, jewelry, fiber crafts, wearable items, zines, or other things with geek appeal, we'd love to have you. We're also interested in vintage zines, action figures, and other kinds of memorabilia. If you're not sure whether your goods are right for the Fan Fair, contact us before signing up, and we'll let you know if the things you want to bring haven't been big sellers in the past.

Hmm. I do enjoy making decoupaged light switch plates out of old comic books, but I'm not sure I have enough of them to fill a whole table.

No problem! You can reserve a table or a half-table for yourself, or split one with a friend (or friends!). If you've only got enough light switch plates for a quarter-table, that's fine -- just join forces with your friend who crochets amigurumi versions of the Justice League.

I'm not attending CON.TXT, but I did make this really great oil painting of Paul Gross wrestling a bear. Is there a way I can still try to sell it?

That would be a perfect fit for the Orphan Table!

I am attending CON.TXT, but I don't have a lot of things I'd want to sell at the Fan Fair -- just this file box full of zines and the entire run of Stargate Atlantis on DVD. What's my best option?

Sounds like you're a great candidate for the Orphan Table! Please make sure everything you'd like us to sell for you is labeled with a price ($5 minimum) and your name, so we can keep track of what you sell.

Hey, maybe this means I can finally find a home for the six boxes of Dragonlance paperbacks in my garage! You guys want those, right?

...Probably not, no. Not all pre-owned items are likely to be good sellers, and we don't want you to have to haul them all the way to the con and back for nothing. If you're interested in bringing a lot of used items or anything bulky or heavy, please contact us before you sign up and we'll let you know if they're a good fit for the con.

I want to sell at the Fan Fair, but I can't attend the whole weekend. Can I just come for a day?

Yes! You can buy a table for $30 ($20 for a half), or buy a day membership for $60, get $10 off your table fees, and attend all events on Saturday. The Fan Fair is from 2 - 5 pm (setup begins at 1 pm); after that is a dinner break and then our dance party, Disco Duck.

How do I sign up for all of these very exciting options?

Check out our Fan Fair page for details. If you have questions, you can contact us any time.

Miscellaneous (expand all)

What will the weather be like?

Late July in the Washington, D.C. area tends to be very hot and humid, with daytime highs anywhere between the low 70s and the high 90s. You can expect the hotel to be well air-conditioned. Rainy days are rare, but afternoon thunderstorms are not.

Updated weather forecast! According to weather.com's forecast for Pentagon City, temperatures will be in the high 80s with high humidity and scattered thunderstorms late in the day.

What does CON.TXT mean, anyway?

Back in days of yore when dinocomputers roamed the internet, fanfiction was emailed back and forth in plain text files, or .TXT as operating systems called them. We may be modern fans, but we remember!

What about the ducks?

Because we like it! Because ducks are fannish! Because sometimes a girl needs a purple duck, and nothing else will do!