Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Clues to Nancy Drew Convention Planning #1

A Nancy Drew convention planner you ponder? Yes, it's a delightfully mysterious hobby to say the least ;)

I thought it might be interesting to start highlighting a bit more of what I do here at the Blog, when it comes to planning the annual Nancy Drew Sleuths conventions. You may not realize, but there is a massive amount of time and planning and attention to detail that goes into each and every year's conventions, so this Blog might be a fun way to give you all some insight and let you share in the planning!

The gist of what we do: we walk in Nancy Drew's footsteps quite simply. We pick a location where a classic Nancy Drew book was set (the first 56 hardcovers in print from 1930 to 1979.) We spend several days doing a myriad of activities that Nancy and her chums did in the book, try to throw in some book hunting if feasible, and some free time for people to get out and explore the setting we've chosen. We have a big convention day (or two) with speakers, activities, and a raffle to benefit a local library. Capping off our event is a mystery dinner party with a Nancy Drew gift exchange.

Next year's 2010 convention is our 10th anniversary and it's also the 80th anniversary of Nancy Drew. We're also inviting Hardy Boys fans to come join us. And we're doing two events--land on Merritt Island, FL and a cruise to the Bahamas from Port Canaveral. So it's a mixed bag of themes! Want to attend? Register here!

So where are we at in the planning, you may be wondering? Check this out:

1. We've got less than 5 months to go - the events begin on April 6, 2010.

2. We've still got more cabins to sell on the Nancy Drew cruise to reach our quota, deadline on that is Dec. 1st to book.

3. I've only got about 25 registered for land early, though that registration deadline isn't until Jan. 15, 2010 and people are notorious for registering at the last minute ;) I expect 50 to 100. The real mystery in all of this is WHERE ARE THE HARDY BOYS FANS??? I think we need Frank and Joe to provide a few clues. Pretty much zero response from that fan community. I'd like to discover The Secret of What Cave They're Living In so I can better advertise this shindig. ;)

4. We've got our hotel, activities, and basics set up. Most of our speakers are lined up. We've got a nice program organized!

5. I have yet to get very many licensees of Nancy Drew (those companies that sell products featuring Nancy Drew) on board to attend, sponsor or help out--and many have never even responded to my e-mails :( Frustrating, you're probably thinking! So am I...

6. I need to do a final read through of the basic books that are our themes so I can finalize all those fun little activities and mystery theme stuff that makes the conventions oh so much better!

7. I need to decide on whether local advertising will even be a possibility or not. If you don't have $$$ for advertising, how can you advertise the event to get more people to attend. It's a dilemma, no doubt, and I'd like to find a way to provide advertising to get the locals out to the events!

So, we're left with less than 5 months for me to whip it together as I always manage to do, I don't have a lick of advertising money or sponsors, and I'd really like to see a bit more professional courtesy with responses being more timely...

On the flip side, this is probably going to be one of our best conventions ever! I try to top the last each year and this year in Vegas was really great, I think. Went off without a hitch and lots of fun to boot. Next year, we'll be thoroughly enjoying sand, surf, and sleuthing, there's no mystery about that!


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