Dear MarsCon attendees, dementia fans, filkers, gamers, and geeks of all sorts:

My name is Beth Kinderman, and I'm a musician, gamer, geek, and inveterate lover of sci-fi conventions. MarsCon 2009 will be my third MarsCon. Now that my husband Eric Zawadzki and I have kind of gotten the hang of how this convention thing works, we've decided that the time has come to contribute to the life and fun of MarsCon in a more direct way. Against all reason and good sense and with the cooperation and support of my band, the Player Characters, we have decided that we want to throw a room party to promote filk music, gaming, and the general awesomeness of nerds partying together at MarsCon. The trouble is, we can't do it alone. We have come to the MarsCon community to humbly request donations and financial support from the attendees of MarsCon to make this party happen. With your assistance, we can throw an amazing get-together and help make MarsCon 2009 the most memorable yet!

Below are the answers to some questions we suspect you might have:

What's going to happen at this party?
We'll open Friday night after opening ceremonies. Fun board and card games will be provided, as well as a space for a filk and music circle. Around midnight we'll have our only scheduled Friday event, Gamer Bedtime Stories - come tell us about your character! Regale everybody with tales of daring battles with gazebos! Milk and cookies will be provided!

On Saturday night, after the masquerade, we will open once again for the main event: Scheduled acoustic concerts by filk and dementia acts. Five acts will be performing at our room party this year:

Following the concerts, we'll open up a circle again so that the music and fun can continue late into the night.

Why do you need our money to do this?
Room parties are expensive, and the people throwing this one are newlyweds who are far from wealthy. We can contribute plenty of time and effort to a room party, but financially speaking, we can't do it alone. However, all of us together most certainly can make this happen. It is our hope that others will see the value and the fun in what we are trying to do and feel moved to contribute to the cause. If that sounds like you, read on for more information about how you can help!

With all of this music, are you trying to compete with the dementia track?
Absolutely not! The goal of our party is to provide more concerts and more music in addition to what already exists, not to draw people away from the dementia activities. Toward this end, no concerts will be scheduled in our room in conflict with any dementia track events that are happening on the main stage. We have also spoken about our plans with the great Luke Ski, so the track organizers know this is happening and support our plan. Please understand that this party is a supplement to the awesome dementia track and not a replacement for it.

What's in it for me?
Apart from the satisfaction of pledging your support to a worthy cause and the fun of being able to look forward to a great new party, dig, if you will, a picture: Let's imagine that it's Saturday night at MarsCon and you're putting the moves on some sweet guy or gal dressed up as your favorite nerdy character. The only thing standing between you and your sweetie is the presence of some rivals whose accents are sexier than yours (you know what I mean). With a sly smile you take him or her by the hand and lead him to the Player Characters' room party, where your name is prominently displayed on the wall as one of those wonderful, generous, and all-around awesome people who helped bring such an amazing party into existence. Awestruck and overcome, s/he swoons into your arms. The tasteful fade to black that follows is all because you helped make this room party happen.

(Note: The Player Characters cannot guarantee that their room party will function as an aphrodisiac and are not authorized to give refunds in the event that it does not function as advertised.)

On a less facetious note, room party donors will have first dibs on the party room as crash space, so if you are in need of such a thing, making a donation could very well save you money in the long run.

How much money do you need to make this happen?
We have adopted the tried and true strategy of "$20 x 20." That is to say, we are looking for 20 people who can each contribute $20 to the furtherance of this party. $20 x 20 will allow us to rent a room for Friday and Saturday nights and purchase some snacks and a keg of tasty beer. Pledges above and beyond $20 x 20 are also welcome as they would allow us to expand the depth of our food and beverage offerings, get the room on Thursday for easier setup, or maybe even stay open on Sunday for dead dog party fun. So if this sounds like the kind of party you want to see at MarsCon, please consider donating to the cause!

What if I don't have $20 to spare?
$20 is ultimately just a guideline. If a larger or smaller amount trips your trigger, go for it!

I want to donate something else! Like my time, or some food, or some booze!
That can probably be arranged. Again, contact me via email (belovedporcupine@gmail.com) if you want to support the party in another way.

If you have a question that this post has not answered, please leave a comment or email me (again, belovedporcupine@gmail.com if you missed it the 2893748397 other times that it was in this post!).

The following people have pledged their financial support to the Player Characters' room party! Don't you want to join them in their awesomeness? If so, please let me know via comments or by emailing belovedporcupine@gmail.com. Monetary contributions may be sent via Paypal to that same address. You may also make a pledge for later if you wish. Please note that we WILL hold you to the stated amount of your contribution if you do not pay upon pledging; we don't expect that everyone who reads this will contribute, but we do expect that everyone who agrees to help us will follow through on their promise.

1. Beth Kinderman
2. Eric Zawadzki
3. Dave Stagner
4. Thaedeus
5. Eric Coleman
6. Nicky Penwarden
7. Rachel Traynham
8. Rob Balder
9. Dylan Birtolo
10. Gifted Gear
11. Michael Nixon
12. Noel Helgesen
13. Karl Brown
14. The All-Powerful Nateboi
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20.

Thanks for reading, and have a great MarsCon!