Baltimore, MD was selected by the members of the NPL at the Convention in Ann Arbor, MI.
CON ANNOUNCEMENT — by Pfire, Arcs, and QED
Greetings, Krewe! As announced in Denver last year, the 170th Convention of the National Puzzlers’ League will be held in Baltimore, Maryland, July 9–12, 2009. This announcement covers more details about the convention hotel, travel into Baltimore, ground transportation, the convention registration fee, the convention packet, and some scheduling notes.
This year’s hotel is the Tremont Plaza Hotel, located in downtown Baltimore six blocks from the Inner Harbor. To make reservations, call 1-800-TREMONT (1-800-873-6668) Monday to Friday between 8:00 a.m. and 7:30 p.m. or Saturday or Sunday between 10:00 a.m. and 2:00 p.m. Eastern. Be sure to mention the National Puzzlers’ League to receive the group rate. Rates are $145/night for single or double occupancy, $165/night for triple occupancy, and $185/night for quad occupancy. Group rates are applicable from July 7 to July 12. Reservations should be made by June 9. After this date, the hotel may start releasing rooms from our reservation block, and the group rate may no longer apply. For more information about the hotel, visit www.tremontsuitehotels.com. When navigating the website, our hotel is the Plaza and our meeting space is the Grand, which adjoins it.
The official airline for the Baltimore convention is AirTran, and the recommended airport is Baltimore/Washington Thurgood Marshall International (BWI). Our EventSavers code will entitle you to a 10% discount on the lowest available fare for flights in and out of BWI from July 6 to July 15; the EventSavers code is BWI070909. Once you have arrived in Baltimore, our recommendation to get downtown is the Light Rail. Trains leave the airport every twenty to thirty minutes between 5:00 a.m. and 12:30 a.m. on weekdays for a $1.60 fare. Details on how to use the system will follow in the convention packet. Taxis, airport shuttles, and rental cars are also available.
If you are traveling by Amtrak, you should plan on using Baltimore Penn Station, which is just over a mile from the hotel. Light Rail and taxis are available from the train station as well, with details to follow in the convention packet.
TK Focht, 1005 Chiswell Ln, Silver Spring, MD 20901.
Please include your e-mail address when mailing your fee so that we can confirm receipt. The registration deadline is June 1, 2009. As was done for last year’s Conorado, the convention packet will be e-mailed in PDF format shortly after the registration deadline. It will include information about the hotel, transportation in Baltimore, local attractions, dining options, and directions for if you are driving. The packet will also include recommendations for parking. Parking does not come cheaply in downtown Baltimore, and we will be investigating options in case you are bringing a car. Printed copies of the packet are available on request. If you would like a printed version mailed to you, please include the request and your address when sending in your registration fee.
To close, a few scheduling notes that may impact your travel arrangements. Some people have asked when the pre-Con party will be. We are planning to hold the party on Wednesday, July 8, in the evening. People have also asked about the possibility of going to Camden Yards. The Orioles will be on the road prior to the convention. Eutaw Street between right field and the warehouse will be open, but the park itself will not be. If you would like to see a game played at the park, the only good possibility is the 1:35 p.m. Sunday game just after the convention’s end. If you plan to attend this game, you should arrange to leave Baltimore late Sunday evening or stay over into Monday.
EMAIL ANNOUNCEMENT, June 3 — by Pfire, Arcs, and QED
Greetings, Krewe! There is excellent news in Baltimore today. The Tremont is lowering the room rates for our group to $120/night, effective now. This is a flat rate that applies whether you're booking a single, double, triple, or quad. In addition, if you've already reserved a room at the old group rate, this change will be retroactively applied to your reservation. (Savings for everyone!)
Along with these changes, the Tremont will be holding our room block open until the week before the convention - but we're still encouraging everyone to book now! We've got more people saying they're coming than have reserved rooms at the hotel, so we know some of you have still got to do it.
And one final tidbit about the hotel from yesterday's Baltimore Sun: the ladies' restroom in our meeting area has been nominated as one the ten best in the country based on its combination of cleanliness and elegance. You can read the Sun's article or see commentary with a photograph.
We're just 35 days from the Wednesday party and 36 from the official start of the convention! We're excited about seeing everyone there, and we hope you're excited as well.
EMAIL ANNOUNCEMENT, June 16 — by Arcs
We've been getting some questions about reserving a room at the Tremont. I've been on the phone with them today, and the answers are pretty good general information.
1) Room rate: The $120 reduced rate that was announced two weeks ago is correct. Some Krewe members have called and been quoted higher rates for triple or quad occupancy. This was a mistake in the computers on their end. This should be corrected now; if you happen across this problem, please let me know.
2) Cost of Rollaway Cots: The room rate does NOT include having a cot. These are $20/night. (Which, yes, makes it the same as the mistaken rate before, but at least now you won't be charged for a cot on top of an incorrect higher occupancy rate.)
3) Availability of Rollaway Cots: Baltimore City fire code does not allow for cots to be placed in the double queen bed rooms. The single queen bed rooms, however, have sleeper sofas and can have a cot. In other words, a double queen room can have at most two beds in it, but a single queen room can have at most three. If you have more than two people in your room, you should consider your sleeping arrangements and adjust your reservation as necessary.
As always, let me or the group of con hosts (firstname.lastname@example.org) know if you have any questions. These points got clarified because people asked us, and I think it's very useful.
Baltimore previously hosted conventions (from Conventions and Editors):
|8.||Dec. 1886||Baltimore, MD||Cyrus|
|14.||July 1890||Baltimore, MD||Kosciusko McGinty|
|22.||July 1894||Baltimore, MD||Arty Fishel|
|25.||Jan. 1896||Baltimore, MD||Primrose|
|29.||Jan. 1898||Baltimore, MD||Maud Lynn|
|33.||Jan. 1900||Baltimore, MD||Remardo|
|39.||Jan. 1903||Baltimore, MD||D.C. Ver|
|79.||Feb. 1923||Baltimore, MD||Arty Ess|
|85.||Feb. 1926||Baltimore, MD||Arty Ess|
|95.||Feb. 1931||Baltimore, MD||Arty Ess|
|101.||Feb. 1934||Baltimore, MD||Arty Ess|
|117.||Feb. 1942||Baltimore, MD||Arty Ess|
|127.||Sept. 1951||Baltimore, MD||Arty Ess|
|170.||July 2009||Baltimore, MD||Crax|