In preparation for the Town Hall meeting on the Sunday of the conference, I’m posting this question for comments.
VisCom is not your run-of-the-mill conference. It is a plenary conference where all participate in every session — we don’t present and go. We present and stay and learn and critique, probing the big questions about our discipline in a way, I would argue, is rarely seen in any of the other conferences where visual communication is merely a division or interest group.
- Reasonable price
- Scope to hang out together for meals and conversation
- Visually engaging location
- Isolated enough for us to concentrate on the conference and near enough to activities so that we can do fun things on the Friday afternoon/evening off.
For years, that meant some place in the mountains… Anywhere from Banff to Taos. Last year folks asked about doing the conference in the Rhode Island area — preferably close to Newport (of course anywhere in Rhode Island is close to Newport by West coast standards… East coast standards are a little more eccentric. In addition, despite the fact that I work on Mount Hope Bay in Bristol, there are no mountains here… strictly sea level. (Mount Hope comes from Montaup in the Pokanoket language.)
I spent some time researching what would fit the criteria and connected with an old viscomer, Renee Hobbes who is now at URI. So here is the scoop on what I found:
Unlike mountain ski resorts where June is off-season, June is graduation and wedding month around here and the season usually starts Memorial Day Weekend. Anything by the sea is mostly booked weekends or is prohibitively expensive.
But I did find the retreat center at URI, Whispering Pines… it is the perfect location and size. I think the money will work. BUT… They do not have any June weekends available.
They do have Sunday June 22 through Thursday June 27, 2014 available. I don’t think we’ve ever done a weekday conference, but if folks are willing, this would be a great opportunity. It might even work better for those folks who routinely have commencement duties on the Saturdays in June.
I am also looking into our campus as we have a gorgeous new dorm building with apartments and suites…