Captain’s Log – August 2019

Greetings and felicitations!

I hope everyone is enjoying the nice(r) weather. Hurry up, because it's already August! We've had some good fun this summer, starting with our anniversary picnic in June. It was so fun to have a beautiful day, good food and fun friends, and what a wonderful thing to experience a Peep Toss after a years-long hiatus. It was especially fun to see the 20-somethings, who grew up on the Peep Toss, having a good time and remembering the glories of past Tosses. Thanks to Lori for the fun!

As you know, we have been working feverishly for months on the plans for CONvergence 2019. I'm happy to report that the room worked out well in the new hotel, and you can find details in this newsletter.

We have not been idle in our community service efforts this summer. We hosted our 36th blood drive at CONvergence, collecting 46 pints of blood. The better news is that we had 89 people who were willing to donate, so next year we'll be increasing the capacity of the drive. The best news of all is that we hit our 1,000 donor! The happy (and unsuspecting) winner received applause from the crowd and a prize pack of American Red Cross and USS Nokomis goodies from us. Thanks to Jane, Roxanne, Jenna and Joann, who all helped on Saturday at the bloodmobile. A special round of applause to Jane, who spent many hours calling donors in the weeks preceding the con.

Another community service event this month was our visit to Feed My Starving Children. A group of us packed food in the Eagan location, and our final total was 62 boxes and 13,392 meals packed. That's enough to feed 37 children for a year - great work!!

Don't forget our upcoming events (especially those that need advance registration). As I do every August, I am putting out a call for ideas for the upcoming calendar. At the September Governing Board meeting, we'll entertain all submitted ideas for social, community service and science fiction events. Send you ideas to me or another board member by the end of August, with all relevant details. Remember that no idea is too big or too small, and it always helps if you are willing to chair your activity. We know that there are lots of fun things to do out there, so let us know!

See you around the Galaxy!

Mary

Talls Ships in Duluth

Join us on the shores of Lake Superior for Festival of Sail Duluth 2019. The festival runs from Sunday, August 11 to Tuesday, August 13. We will be going on Sunday. The hours are 11am to 7pm. Tickets are sold on the website (www.festofsailduluth.com), and you should order them ASAP. We'll also be having a sleepover on Saturday night, thanks to Denise and Mike. They have a cabin half-way to Duluth and are welcoming us to come up on Saturday. We'll have breakfast in the morning and then caravan up to Duluth to meet those who aren't sleeping over. Please sign up by August 1st if you want to be included. 

CONvergence 2019

We did it! Thanks to a (relatively small) group of hard-working volunteers, we succeeded in our quest to adapt our sets to the new executive suite in the Hyatt Regency Minneapolis. It was a whirlwind weekend full of hard work and hard play. The most important thing is that we welcomed many guests - old and new - to our rooms and maintained our status as the best room at con!!

The weekend started out on Wednesday, July 3rd with the loading of our U-Haul. Everything had been meticulously staged during our construction day, but it's still a lot of hard work in the humidity! We unloaded in the main loading dock of the hotel. This adventure is best shared over a strong cocktail, but many details will be outlined at our meeting in September. We resumed activity on Thursday morning, when (news flash!!) we discovered that the dimensions of the room were not as expected! Gasp! That's not really how it went - the language was far more colorful - but we had to do what the Borg do and adapt. In the end, and after 10 hours of hanging, pounding, taping, painting, lugging, considering, debating, banging, and good-old camaraderie, we opened to the roar of adoring fans on time!

The weekend went well, with about 2,000 red and green drinks served and many, many thrilling comments from the visitors. I can't tell you how many "Oh, my God" and "No way!" and "I always wanted to see this" comments we heard as people walked in. It was the best.

One wonderful addition this year was the Friday afternoon trivia session, hosted by the folks from TC Trek Trivia. It was standing room only in the Horta Cave as they help several competitive rounds, complete with prizes. It went so well that people asked all night if we'd do it again on Saturday, but alas, it was not to be. Maybe next year!

Skip ahead (due to hysterical amnesia) to Sunday afternoon, when we stowed all of our precious pieces in Cargo Bay 3 and said goodbye for a while. Thanks to another hardy crew, this work was efficient and quick and our driver Scott could return the truck and join us at the usual destination - a restaurant where we ate and drank and collapsed!

We'll be having lots of conversation in the upcoming months about plans for next year. Will we have enough helpers? Will we have more helpers when the convention is held in August, as the plan for 2020 suggests? What can we do in the new room that takes better advantage of the space? Oh, so many mysteries exist!

Thank you to everyone that helped, from construction and alterations, to being in the rooms to welcome our guests, to shopping and planning. Importantly, thanks to everyone that helped in loading and unloading and building the sets (literally the heavy lifting). We couldn't do what we do without every one of you!

Mary

DON’T FORGET to sign up for 2019 Movie Night!

Please join us for our 2019 outdoor movie night on August 17th. The fun starts at 7pm in the backyard of the Captain's Quarters. Everyone is welcome to Trek under the stars!

The cost of the event is still $12 and includes your meal and entertainment. You can easily pay on PayPal through the website.

Please bring a beverage of your choice and something to sit on (most people bring chairs but blankets work, too). Please sign up online ASAP or let Mary know if you plan to attend so we can plan the amount of food. We need to know who's coming by August 11th. It is critically important for everyone to RSVP, as we've had as many as 50 and as few as 25!

The only other thing you need to know is that there is Star Trek on the menu. Please join us for the fun, rain or shine!

Mary

 

Log in and sign up under the MyUSSNOKOMIS page.

Need a shortcut? Signup Sheet for Movie Night

Click here for PayPal.  The price is $12.67 per ticket to cover the PayPal fees.

Buy Now Button

Captain’s Log – July 2019

Greetings, crew!

I hope you're all enjoying the summer and are planning to come to CONvergence. It will be a blast! See more information in this newsletter. We're publishing this special July newsletter to make sure folks are in the know about everything that's going on, and it's a lot. Please read below and make sure you don't miss out on any of the fun - we really want to have fun with all of you!

Speaking of fun, do you have an event or community service project that you'd like to see on our calendar? Don't forget that all members are welcome to submit ideas. We'll consider anything you'd like to do, so let a board member know. The governing board will formulate the calendar and present it to the crew in September, so now's the time!

We have lots of events this summer that require advance signup. Some also require advance payment. Don't miss out - sign up today!!

  • Feed My Starving Children on July 16th
    • This summer's packing event is at the Eagan location at 990 Lone Oak Road, Suite 136, Eagan, MN 55121. As of this writing we have only 2 people on a reservation of 15, so please go to www.fmsc.org to sign up today! As you might imagine, when we're done with our 6:00 to 7:30pm packing session we'll head to a nearby restaurant for dinner. Join us!
  • Moon Party on July 20th
    • Join us in celebrating the anniversary of the first moon landing at the Moon Party, hosted by Phill Goldman & Lynne Tauer at their home in the northern suburbs. We'll start at 6:00PM and go until "whenever." You are invited to bring your favorite side dish for potluck-style sharing, but that is completely optional. Please bring a lawn chair and, because it’s a summer evening in Minnesota, don't forget your preferred bug spray. Registration (sign up online) and payment for your meal ($11 per person) are due by Saturday, July 13. No exceptions. This event is exclusive to Nokomis members and plus-ones only.
  • Tall Ships Adventure and Overnight August 10th and 11th:
    • Join us on the shores of Lake Superior for Festival of Sail Duluth 2019. The festival runs from Sunday, August 11 to Tuesday, August 13. We will be going on Sunday. The hours are 11am to 7pm. Tickets are sold on the website (www.festofsailduluth.com), and you should order them ASAP. We'll also be having a sleepover on Saturday night, thanks to Denise and Mike. They have a cabin half-way to Duluth and are welcoming us to come up on Saturday. We'll have breakfast in the morning and then caravan up to Duluth to meet those who aren't sleeping over. Please use the signup sheet to let us know you are interested, so we can keep you in the loop.
  • Outdoor Movie Night on August 17th
    • Please join us for our 2019 outdoor movie night on August 17th. The fun starts at 7pm in the backyard of the Captain's Quarters. Everyone is welcome to Trek under the stars! The cost of the event is still $12 and includes your meal and entertainment. Please bring a beverage of your choice and something to sit on (most people bring chairs but blankets work, too). Please sign up online ASAP or let Mary know if you plan to attend so we can plan the amount of food. We need to know who's coming by August 11th. It is critically important for everyone to RSVP.
  • Top Golf Outing on August 18th
    • You do not have to be a golfer to play! Think of it as a bowling alley, perched above the playing field, with golf balls instead of bowling balls. We're going as a group during the afternoon of August 18th. Each bay accommodates 8 people and 6 players, so 2 people can observe and relax. The cost of golfing is based on the number of people that go, so we can only estimate it at this time. Since they sell out the bays quickly, we'll need everyone to sign up by July 7th. Please sign up on the signup sheet and know that we have to commit to a specific number of people for the reservation.

See you at CONvergence, at these events, and around the Galaxy!

Mary

CONvergence – Hey, this means YOU!!

OK, folks. I've said it over and over and now it's really here...please join us to help with the sets and greeting people in the room. Even if you've never done this before and didn't build the sets, come and help. It's so fun you won't believe it!

The times we NEED you are:

  • July 3rd at 6pm to load at our house (this is going to be so easy, as everything is staged in the garage already!)
  • July 7th at 8am to tear down and load out, and we have to be out by 11am!!
  • July 7th at the house to unload and pack everything away, then go out to eat

Here's what you should do for the convention itself: let me know when you want to come and populate the room. It's best to sign up for a time so we know you'll be there and can count on you. The room is really big this year, so we'll need people in the front and back areas, in addition to James T Hefner out in the hallway calling in the guests. You don't have to do anything other than visit and welcome people. How fun is that?

Everyone is welcome and everyone is needed, so please let me know when you can come. Thanks in advance.

Mary

CONvergence Blood Drive 2019

July 6th is just around the corner, and it marks our 36th blood drive. It will also mark the occasion of our 1,000th pint of blood if we get 51 this year. This is amazing and means we'll have touched up to 3,000 lives with our work over the years.

Please sign up to donate at the Hyatt Regency on redcrossblood.org or on the CONvergence site at http://www.convergence-con.org/at-the-con/events/blood-drive/  There are many appointments open. You may be the one, and there will be a fabulous prize. If you're at the con, let us know in the lobby or during our open party hours in room 5121. Remember that the Hyatt is very accessible by public transportation, which has not been true of our previous locations. Everyone can come!

Thanks in advance for your gift of life!

An Important (and sticky) Note from Lori

Long time USS Nokomis members have fond memories of a summertime tradition, The Peep Toss. The first event took place approximately twenty years ago and continued annually through 2006. Many a strange and wonderful contraption was constructed in the noble effort to “Give Wings To The Flightless” and now you, yes, you have the opportunity to participate in this magnificent effort once again. I, the Poobah of Peep-dom and the Maven of Marshmallow, will be there to witness and oversee it in all if its brightly colored, sugar encrusted glory!

On June 8th at the 35th Anniversary Picnic the members of our Grand Organization will be launching our small, squishy, wingless friends skyward! How, you ask, may I participate in this Most Altruistic of Endeavors?  The rules are few. The participant is to construct a device to launch, fling or otherwise propel a marshmallow Peep as far as possible. The Peep must at some point fly free of the device. The devices may include, but are not limited to cannons, catapults, slingshots, or one’s own strong arm. Any method of propulsion is allowed as long as it complies with local laws and park rules. Impressively loud cool noises such as produced by a small explosion are heartily encouraged. All Peeps will be provided by the officials. The Peep itself may not be altered in any way. Each participant will place their device completely behind the firing line in turn and will launch one Peep. Misfires will be allowed a second attempt. The statistician will record the distance that said Peep travels. As you have certainly already surmised, the farthest distance is the winner. There will be prizes for first, second and third place which the winners will select from the also revived Mysterious and Wondrous Bag O’ Goodies. As you may recall, this Bag was the source of Great Hilarity and Fabulousness in the past and I do not intend to disappoint my fellow Nokomisites with its return!

Now, my most philanthropic and creative friends, I encourage you to put on your Thinking Caps and devise a way to help a small, flightless avian soar!

CONvergence 2019 is here!

OK, folks. I've said it over and over and now it's really here...please join us to help with the sets and greeting people in the room. Even if you've never done this before and didn't build the sets, come and help. It's so fun you won't believe it!

We're setting up the set at my house on June 23rd at 10am. We need hands to hold the walls so we can see how fantastically it goes up. We'll assess paint and glue needs, plus anything else we need to do.

Here's what you should do: let me know when you want to come and populate the room. It's best to sign up for a time so we know you'll be there and can count on you. The room is really big this year, so we'll need people in the front and back areas, in addition to James T Hefner out in the hallway calling in the guests. You don't have to do anything other than visit and welcome people. How fun is that?

Everyone is welcome and everyone is needed, so please let me know when you can come. Thanks in advance.

Mary

CONvergence Blood Drive 2019

You heard it right - we are going to collect our 1,000th pint of blood if we get 51 this year. This is amazing and means we'll have touched up to 3,000 lives with our work over the years. Please sign up to donate at the Hyatt Regency on redcrossblood.org. There are many appointments open. You may be the one, and there will be a fabulous prize.

Thanks in advance for your gift of life!