March 4, 2017 Meeting of the NJ/NY Costumers’ Guild (aka, the Sick Pups)

Meeting held at Holiday Inn Express, Latham, NY

Meeting Minutes presented by Tina Connell

Attendees: Debi (hosting), Byron & Tina, Lin, Rich & Stephanie, Diane, and guest Chris Bunt (who joined, at the meeting).

The meeting was called to (dis)order at 3:37 pm., following a food break and a workshop on how to wear a sari. Tina brought several examples from her collection, and Lin also brought hers.


Official Stuph:

Minutes: The minutes of the December 3rd meeting were distributed and were approved as written.

President’s Report: The ICG is in the process of organizing a press, for books and manuscripts, electronic or by ‘print on demand.’ The proposal is before the Board now, and will be voted upon before the end of March. They have one manuscript in hand at present.

The ICG’s annual meeting will be at Costume-Con next month. Byron doesn’t believe there are any major issues that will be discussed at the meeting. Philip Gust will not be standing for President again.

Treasurer: Byron reported for Marcy, as she was unable to attend. We have $296 in the account, as of the most recent statement. She is missing some statements, as the post office screwed up. For some reason, they arbitrarily decided that Pups mail should not be delivered to her address, and returned the mail to the senders. She has corrected that issue with the post office, and has arranged to get duplicate statements from the bank.


Recent Cons:

Arisia: The registration issues they had last year have been greatly improved. Rich said that there was a dry run on Thursday with the staff, prior to the con. The art show was strange, and their experiment to ‘improve’ it was far from successful: artists were selected for hanging/display space using a lottery system, with the result that instead of the usual mostly-high-quality display, there was an inordinate amount of really amateurish art. There was no bidding for pieces – everything was ‘quick sale.’ A lot of the art displayed, as a result, was prints, not originals. Byron & Tina bought two original pieces.

The masquerade had 35 entries, and had many very fine entries. The Best in Show for both presentation and workmanship went to a triple goddess entry, which included the Pups’ Lisa Ashton. Although the audience had a great show, the Green Room had a number of problems. Masquerade director James Hensey had run three previous Arisia masquerades, so he was not inexperienced. Still: the running order was not provided to Byron (Green Room manager) until late, and it was also incorrect, so changes, some of them radical, were still taking place after the green room had already filled up. Things were really chaotic for a while. Workmanship judging started at least an hour late, because James hadn’t gotten their judging forms to them. There were two judges, who seemed to spend a lot of time discussing the entries with one another, which also slowed things down. They wanted to do their judging in den-order, but Byron explained to them that it would cause even further delays by doing so. Stephanie said that they also had a new show caller, and that there were problems at tech rehearsal.

The MC was awful – he clearly was more interested in showing himself off than in making the entrants look good. Stephanie said that James found him at a Comic-Con. He had apparently been an actor and a DJ. Byron said that at one point he blew off an entrant’s script. Byron also said that James apparently never briefed the MC or the stage director. And Clear Ether (newsletter) was given inaccurate information, after the masquerade.

No reports for Boskone or KatsuCon. Mike and Heidi have said they are planning to attend Heliosphere, Albacon, and Lunacon.

Upcoming Events and Cons:

Heliosphere: March 10-12, 2017, Tarrytown, NY.



Albacon: (Byron & Tina’s ‘home’ con) March 31-April 2, Albany, NY. Tina is Con Chair this year. Charles Gannon will be Guest of Honor, and Stephen Hickman is Art GoH. There will be an all-day writers’ workshop on Friday (9 - 5). No formal masquerade, but there will be an informal costume contest on Saturday afternoon, with cash prizes awarded. Carol Salemi will be running the costume track, and there will be workshops on Saturday.

Lunacon: April 7-9, Tarrytown, NY at the Westchester Marriott. Star-studded GoH lineup, with Ben Bova, Bob Eggleton & Marianne Plumridge, and Roberta Rogow. Diane said they seem to be very disorganized; she didn’t get info about the art show until very late. Carol Salemi is in charge of the Costuming program track. Unlike the art show, Carol got back to Diane promptly when Diane sent her suggestions for panels / workshops. Byron will be Masquerade Director, and Debi will be Green Room Manager. Diane said that she plans to be in the masquerade, but that this will probably be her last time.

Costume-Con 35: April 20-24, Mississauga, Ontario, Canada, at the Hilton Mississauga/Meadowvale. No new information available; inquiries fall into a black hole. Byron & Tina said they have no jobs at CC; they weren’t asked, and this will be a nice break.

Balticon: May 26-29, downtown Baltimore. Guests Eric Flint (and 1632 Mini-con), and Donato Giancola. Lin is planning to attend.

Rich mentioned that they plan to attend Shore Leave (July 7-9), which will include among their guests Michael Dorn and Marina Sirtis. Diane mentioned DragonCon (Labor Day weekend). Rich expects to attend the Arisia Relaxacon on Cape Cod at the beginning of June. Byron mentioned that Jill Eastlake will be running the NASFiC (July 6-9, San Juan , PR) masquerade.

Show & Tell: Byron & Tina passed around some of their newest books for people to enjoy. The favorite was a catalog for a ‘Miss Fisher Mysteries’ costume exhibit (3rd series, 2015) in Australia. Diane showed us a new quilt she is working on for the Lunacon art show.

Other Business: Miscellaneous discussions: We need to develop more workshop topics. Diane mentioned quilting on leather, that she had seen at a quilt show the day before the Pups meeting, and suggested that as a possible September topic. Debi wants to look into Pups’ shirts with Spaz patch embroidery. Debi suggested that we might look into having a joint meeting sometime with the new PA chapter. It was mentioned that Marcy is looking into PayPal for the Pups, but although she thinks it looks fairly easy, she doesn’t know how to set it up. Debi will be checking the dates for the Indian Festival in NJ.

Upcoming Meetings / Workshops:

5/6/17: Heidi will host, at Stroudsburg, PA (everybody bring her nice colorful dryer lint). Workshop: working with leather.

7/15/17: at Diane’s, Kendall Park, NJ

9/16/17: at Diane’s, Kendall Park, NJ

Meeting was adjourned (relapse into chaos) at 5:49 pm.