Balticon 34


Balticon 34 will feature continuous program rooms throughout the weekend plus fixed functions such as our art show, dealers room, computer room etc. The goal: to amaze and inspire your sense of wonder by broadening your understanding about the genre and art-form of science fiction & fantasy beyond your everyday world.. Formal panel discussions with SF professionals (writers, artists, agents, etc.), informal discussions among devoted fans, skills demonstrations, readings and performances are included.

So far these SF luminaries have confirmed that they will participate on this years 's BALTICON program:

Catherine Asaro, author
Brick Barrientos and his SF Trivia Contest
Bob Biedeman as Carpathian the Ghost story teller from Videos and HallowScream/Fright Fest
Blessing Bird, American Indian stories
Nina Boal, author
Guinevere Boyd, Farscape expert
Michael K. Brett-Surman, paleontologist
Conrad Brooks, actor
Stephen Burns, author
Octavia Butler, author
Jack L. Chalker, author
Robert R. Chase, author
Eric Choi, author
Carl L. Cipra, moderator
Mitchell Burnside Clapp, scientist and musician
T.J. Burnside Clapp, musician
Hal Clement, author
Brenda W. Clough, author
Walter R. Cole, author
J.L. Comeau, author
Dan Cragg, author
Vonnie Winslow Crist, author
Darkon: Live fantasy combat demo team
Dunloggin, the Pipes and Drum of Tir Na Mhairi; bagpipe band
Dick Dyszel as the Count Gore de Vol
Scott Edelman, author
Nina Ely, video producer
Michael Flynn, author
Richard Garfinkle, author
Rob Gates, author
Alexis Gilliland, author and cartoonist
Charles Gilliland, Fan artist
Parke Godwin, author
Jean Goldstrom, SF Scholar and writer
Brad Graper, Klingon General
Dennis Haney, magician
John G. Hemry, author
Inge Heyer, astronomer
Thomas R. Holtz Jr., author
Murial Hykes, health activist
Marvin Kaye, author
Yoji Kondo, editor and Heinlein scholar
Eric Kotani, author
Dave Kratz, physisist
David W. Kriebel, editor
L. Jagi Lamplighter, author
Paul Levinson, author
Kristin and Andy Looney with the Looney Labs Poptart Cafe
Andrew Love, Physicist
Perrianne Lurie, MD
Bill Mayhew, Folk storytelling
Joe Mayhew, artist and author
Ed Meskeys, editor
Ron Miller, artist and author
Kimberly Moeller, book preservation expert
Steve Myers, ventriloquist and magician
Wendie Old, author
Severna Park, author
Rev. Earle J. Pearce,avant-garde political pundit
Richard Pini, editor
Wendy Pini, artist
Charles C. Ryan, editor
Robert E. Sacks, lawyer
Rock Savage, Video Producer
Darrell Schweitzer, author
Hannah M.G. Shapero, artist and author
Charles Sheffield, author
David Sherman, author
Josepha Sherman, author
Susan Shwartz, author
H. Paul Shuch, SETI researcher, musician
Bud Sparhawk, author
Nancy Springer, author
W.H. Stevens, author
Steve Stiles, cartoonist
James Stoddard, author
Cecilia Tan, author
Louise Titchener, author
Patrick Thomas, author
Gordon Van Gelder, editor
Diane Weinstein, editor
Martin Morse Wooster, author
John C. Wright, author

More SF professionals confirm every day!

Programming Features


This year's programming tracks will feature philosophical debates, story crafting tips and ideas, author readings, book signings and usually outrageous speculation by every science fiction author we can lure to the convention and we do lure quite a few. There will be separate poetry, academic, literary and media tracks. Meet our Guest of Honor, Octavia Butler and this year's Compton Crook Award winner, James Stoddard, for best first novel! The Balticon website will list many of the ideas we are developing.

CALL FOR PAPERS! Once again, there will be a presentation of papers on science fiction, fantasy & horror in books, film & television. The deadline for entries: January 31, 2000 Papers accepted will be published in the BSFAN souveneir book.


Once again hosted by The Lite Circle, publisher of Baltimore's literary newspaper Lite, our poetry track continues to explore the arena of non-prose literature from inspiration and writing to submitting for publication and an overview of small press publishing. There will be featured readers and an open reading. To contribute or participate either e-mail: or check the Poetry Track/Workshop box on the registration form.


Our very popular workshop will involve short story exercises and discussion. Pre-registration is required for participation at the workshop. Please check the box on the membership form to pre-register and receive an information package. Please do not send manuscripts before receiving the workshop information package. For more information e-mail: . You can also write or call for details.


Our famous science program continues with the kind of briefings you see for industry, academic and government leaders. Topics include NASA and space industry planning, launch systems, paleontology, DNA research and more. For information and suggestions, email

CHILDREN'S PROGRAMMING: Games, projects and stories for children ages 4-12 to inspire your kids to appreciate the convention experience. This is not a daycare function; parents retain full responsibilty for children during this program.


Informal discussions of your favorite part of the SF universe moderated by the people who know it best. Share your opinions. Tell others about any groups or clubs you represent or know of by voice, e-mail or snail mail. Topic suggestions are most welcome.


Marvel at the themes of visual imagination. Learn about the skills and techniques that created the beauty.


Returns to Balticon bringing science-fiction-folk-music to life. There will be panels and workshops and concerts. Our Filk Guest of Honor, T.J. & Mitchell Burnside Clapp, will perform. Of course, there will be Bardic circles through Friday and Saturday nights. Yep, that's 24 hours on both nights. Check out the internet newsgroup for more details as well as e-mail or check the filk box on the registation form.


This year, Balticon plans to expand the dance to Friday & Saturday Nights and will feature music of the seventies, eighties and nineties.


Due to circumstances beyond our or their control Dennis Haney & Steve Meyers will not be appearing at Balticon this year.


Learn some new skills to make your own costume dreams a reality for the hall or stage. We have workshops, demos and panels. Sign up in advance by e-mail at or check the Costuming Track/Workshop box on the registration form. Check the website prior to the con for more details.

Costume Programs - Schedule and Descriptions


On Saturday night Balticon hosts one of the oldest and largest masquerades on the East Coast. This event features a clever and creative variety of costuming art. Marvel at the participants crafting of fabric and other materials into imaginative snd extraodinary costumes. The masquerade competition will be judged on the experience skills division system to give beginners a chance to go home winners. The masquerade regustration form and rules are available on the web page, or request them by mail by checking off the masquerade box on the registration form. Questions? E-mail the masquerade director at Hall Costumes will be allowed on stage this year.


Andrew Bergstrom presents his new comedy "Babylon Soup" on Friday night.

HALL COSTUMES: Every year we look for the most colorful, unusual and imaginative hall costumes. Be you a novice or an experienced costumer, Balticon wants you to dress up. Hall costume awards will be presented by our wandering judges. This years theme will be costumes inspired by the stories of our Guests of Honor, Octavia Butler and Wendy Pini.


Visit one of the biggest and best regional art shows on the East Coast. There will be over thirty-two hundred square feet of exhibits packed with both original art and prints. Most of the works and prints are available for sale. Artists must pre-register to be included in the art show. Information will be mailed in January. For details, send a request to or write: Balticon Art Show PMB 61 8775 Cloudleap Court Columbia MD 21045,


Features a 4500 square-foot space with room for over sixty tables. Everything a Fan might want! From hard-to-find books to ancient weapons, costumes, collectables, models and more can be found. Dealers in SF and Fantasy related mechandise may inquire about availability by writing: Balticon 34 Dealers Room, P.O. Box 70013, Baltimore, MD., 21237. Write to us now since the reserved space fills up well before the con. The optimal time falls between 11/1/99 & 12 /31/99


New games and SF related software and demos of new computer hardware provide an opportunity for the Fan to see what's cutting edge. Like last year, this will be a three-day exhibit. To help, or if you have questions, e-mail:


Presenting multiple tournaments and role-playing games. Some games will feature prizes, some will be for the honor of the win. We will also have free-form gaming. Contact the gaming czar at


This Year, Balticon will have a Live Action Role Playing event sponsored by "NECCESSARY EVILS" of "The Chronicles of Sheol" fame. For more information, check the updates on the webpage or by e-mail.

SFB Rated Ace tournament at Balticon:

SFB is coming to Balticon! There will be a single-elimination Rated Ace tournament at BaltiCon 2000. Registration begins at 9am on Saturday and games begin at 9:30am. The semi-finals will be completed on Saturday, with the finals beginning at 1pm on Sunday.

Being a sanctioned event, "Module T" and the revised "Tournament 2000" ships will be used. Please see the ADB website for more information.

In addition to the Rated Ace tournament, there will be a patrol-style event on Saturday. The patrol event is *not* a sanctioned event and an Ace card will not be granted to the winner of the Patrol event. Prizes for this event are TBD, but will most likely consist of gift certificates to local gaming stores for the "Net Kills" and "Kill Ratio" winners.

Please contact Randy Steck or Andy Palmer to pre-register for the Ace tournament. Pre-registered participants will have their tournament slot reserved until 2pm on Saturday. At that time, all remaining spots will be opened to waiting players.


A high-resolution screen with home theater surround sound will be open 24 hours and present a dazzling array of the latest SF and Fantasy anime. The anime schedule will be posted on the Balticon webpage when available.


"In space, all warriors are cold warriors." Join the Imperial Klingon Battle Fleet for starship combat. Return to the days of Chang, Kirk and Kruge! Command your own starship in combat against the Klingons, Romulans or Federation. Participate in strategy & tactics using miniatiures you need two hands to pick up. Crawl around on the floor with your enemies. Blatantly defile the peace! DaHjaj jlHeghrup 'ej jlQuch! (Today is a good day to die!)


We run the hottest new SF movies selected from some of the brightest movie/video studios in the world. Share a screening with your friends. Video producers with works they wish to share with the Balticon audience should e-mail details to


This is the contest for young Maryland writers(age 12-18) of SF and Fantasy, sponsored by the Baltimore Science Fiction Society. Share your stories and compete for fame and savings bond prizes. The deadline for submissions is January 31, 2000. Winners will be announced at the awards ceremony on Saturday. Check the Young Writer's information box on the registration form for more information or e-mail Contest rules will be available on the website.


The BSFAN is our annual color-cover, 8 1/2 x 11 perfect-bound, eighty-page souvenir magazine appealing to the Balticon fan. Attendees will receive a copy of the BSFAN at registration. Submissions of art, short stories, research articles and poetry are greatly encouraged. Advertising Rates: Full page ad:$190; Half-page ad:$100; Quarter-page ad:$60. There is a 50% discount for fan organizations. Balticon dealers can submit a camera ready business card sized ad for $25. Rates for center spread may be negotiated. Deadline for submissions is January 1, 2000. Submissions and information requests should be sent to the main address, attention BSFAN or e-mail:


Please send all correspondence and membership fees to the appropriate department at the address below. Please send us your telephone number and postal address when sending e-mail so we may respond with the most effective information package. Updates will be posted on the Balticon webpage as it becomes available.

P.O. Box 686
Baltimore, MD., 21203-0686

Phone(410)JOE-BSFS [410-563-2737]
Fax # 410-879-3602

If you would like to receive updated information about Balticon, subscribe to our info update list by sending e-mail to: with "subscribe info" as the body of the message minus the quotes.


Balticon will be held at the Omni Inner Harbor Hotel. Room rates are $114, plus applicable tax for single, double, triple or quad. Members should make their reservations directly with the hotel by calling (410) 752-1100 or by calling toll free, 1-800-THE-OMNI. The hotel does not guarantee the convention rate after (March 25,2000): so make your reservations soon. When you call the hotel, mention that you will be attending Balticon; you must be an attending member of Balticon to get the convention rate. Please register for your room early. You can use your credit card to guarantee your reservation, the hotel can't charge your card until your arrival date. If fate prevents you from attending Balticon, call at least 3 days prior to your arrival date to cancel and you won't be charged. Early registration helps you and it helps your favorite SF conventions. Last year we sold out our block of hotel rooms in the last two weeks and were then out competeded for rooms by others. If other groups reserve rooms early, as they did last year, then we need to reserve our rooms earlier as well. We have been saying this for years, . When booking a room please call the hotel directly becuase the 1-800 national booking number tells folks the block is full when it isn't. If a hotel employee tells you the hotel is full, e-mail and our hotel liason will check the ststus and make sure. Last year a new employee was misreading the dadtabase and telling people the hotel was full too early, when a SF fan alerted us we were able to take care of the problem.


From points north, take I-95 south through the Fort McHenry tunnel. Take Exit 53(I-395) toward the Inner Harbor. Proceed north on I-395 until it becomes Howard Street. Continue up Howard Street four blocks until you are just past the Baltimore Arena, then turn right onto Baltimore Street. Proceed east on Baltimore Street for one-and-one-half blocks, looking to your left for the Omni Hotel. The hotel is bounded by Baltimore street on the south, Fayette Street on the north and Liberty Street on the west. From points south take I-95 north to Exit 53(I-395) and follow the directions above. From I-83: At the southern end of I-83, turn right onto Fayette Street. The Omni is approximately eight blocks on your left.

Public Transportation: Bus, Lite Rail, Subway Schedules

For folks coming from BWI or who have parked at a commuter lot of the light rail system the University center/Baltimore Street Light Rail stop,which is at Baltimore and Howard Streets, is the closest to the OMNI. Walk east on Baltimore Street to Liberty street and then north on Liberty to the front of the OMNI. Total distance is 3/10th of a mile.

The closest Metro subway stop is the "Charles Center On Baltimore Street, near Charles Street and Baltimore Street, near Calvert Street" station 4/10th of a mile east of the OMNI on Baltimore Street. To get to the front of the OMNI come out on the Calvert Street Side, walk north on Calvert Street to Fayette, turn left and you will see the entrance to the OMNI. The Metro is less useful to folks commuting from outside the city due to its route. Mark Owings recommends the Baltimore MTA bus routes 3, 61 and 64 that pass the OMNI as the best bus connection.

There is a Grey Hound bus terminal just north west of the OMNI within visual distance, for their schedules check

Other Transportation


Parking Information: (Price info subject to change at whim of fate)

Parking under OMNI: has 350 spaces available 24 hours a day. Price is $17.00 per 24 hours but is valet only now. Just pull around to the front of the hotel and contact the Towne Park folks at the valet parking stand. Tell them you are with Balticon and you will get priority over other non-hotel event parkers in the area. We just learned of this change to valet only on 4-12-00 so spread the word about this so everyone knows. The full-light being on at the south side of the hotel parking ramp does not mean the lot is necessarily full for Balticon people because we get priority, hence check with the Towne Park folks first before deciding the hotel parking is full. If full see Edison Parking and Arrow parking below.

Underground Parking near OMNI:

The largest and closest underground parking area open 24 hours is Edison Parking with 650 spaces. Edison is entered by a ramp in the center of Fayette street right in front of the OMNI. The ramp looks scary the first time you use it, but there are cameras covering the ramp and ticket machine with an attendant waiting to resolve any problem even if a car breaks down on the ramp or something. If lot is full there will be a large sign at top of ramp, however, they tell us that they are almost never full and people who use them for Balticon have confirmed this. Price is $13.00 per 24 hours. Their address is Edison Parking 100 West Fayette Street, and their phone number is 410-659-5824

The second largest underground parking area open 24 hours is Arrow Parking at 210 West Baltimore Street just one block west of the OMNI. They have 550 spaces and charge $8.00 per 24 hours. Their phone number is 410-727-6811. They have a light up full sign but also tell us they seldom fill up on a weekend.

Above Ground Parking:

Limited near the OMNI so unless you are real lucky the concierge office of the OMNI recommends the following for folks who dislike underground parking.

Pratt and President streets (Little Italy parking lot) $5.00 per day maximum. A $5-6 cab ride back to OMNI or walk 6 blocks (1/4 of a mile)

Conway and Charles Streets, up to $22.00 per day. $5-6 cab ride to OMNI or walk 9 blocks (one mile).


Balticon will be registering open parties and grouping them all together, which will be on a low floor in the Omni and easily accessable by everyone. Registering your open party will ensure that you are covered by Balticon's corkage agreement(allowing you to serve food and non-alcoholic drinks), and that your neighbors don't mind the noise generated. This is important since parties will be open until 3:00 am thia year. Alcohol is not permitted at open room parties. There is a $25.00 per party night cleaning fee that Balticon will collect before the convention based on the number of nights you plan to hold an open party in your room. This will avoid the billing confusion with the hotel. If you do not register your open party with Balticon, you run the risk of being charged by the hotel for the food and drink you serve and are likely to get closed down early for noise complaints. If you plan on holding a private party or usually like to have a group of your friends you can let us know at, we will put you with the other open parties so you can stay up all night talking and laughing without worring about potential noise complaints. If your room is on the party floor but you are not throwing an open party, you will not be charged the additional cleaning fee. Please check the box on the registration form if you would like to receive the open party information packet or send mail to


Most areas of the convention will close at 3:00am each night with the exception of Anime, Filk and the Hopkins conversation room and it's associated lower level area. These will be open 24 hours a day or as close to that as our volunteers can manage.


Maryland law prohibits indoor public smoking except in designated areas. At the Omni, these are the designated smoking hotel sleeping rooms and the smoking sections of the restaurant and bar.


Pets are not allowed in the hotel. Service or guide animals are not pets.


If you require special access services from the convention, please contact us before February 1, 2000 and we will attempt to accommodate you.


Costume weapons must be inspected and peace bonded. Taking costume weapons outside the hotel will create conflict with the police; please do not take anything that looks like a weapon outside the hotel.


Balticon will have a uniformed Baltimore City police officer stationed inside the hotel for community policing. This means that at Balticon, our officer can explain our unique culture(peace-bonding of weapons, etc.) to the rest of the local force and provide enhanced security for everyone at the convention.


Balticon is an all-volunteer managed convention. We need and want more volunteers. Show your SF community spirit by volunteering a few hours at the con. All volunteers will have access to our staff den. Volunteers who work more than 10 hours receive our exclusive volunteer T-shirt. Those working more than 20 hours will have next year's Balticon membership comped. You can sign up at the convention or check the Volunteering box on the registration form.


A charity auction benefiting Reading is Fundamental will be held during the halftime break of the Masquerade on Saturday night. There will be SF collectables, memorabilia and other exotic items put on the block. If you have something to donate to the auction, bring it to the con. For the fifth year in a row, Balticon is accepting donations for Reading is Fundamental. This terrific organization works nationwide to teach kids to read by getting them hooked on reading at an early age and distributes free books to many children who can not afford a book of their own. RIF listed Balticon as one of their top 100 donors in recent years. For more information on RIF please check the Reading is Fundamental on the registration form or e-mail


That's right. Balticon will be accepting donations of any computer hardware or software. The proceeds from the sale or use of these items will be used to support Balticon. The Baltimore Science Fiction Society, Inc. is a 501(c)(3) organization recognized by the IRS, so your donations will be tax-deductable.


Share this flyer by photocopying the front page and posting it wherever SF and Fantasy fans might see it. We try to cover as much of the region as we can and we are always looking for new friends to come to Balticon. But we can't reach everyone so, if you have some friends, family, co-workers or some like minded aquaintances who would be interested in attending, please copy the front page which has all the vital information and hand it out! The more the merrier.

Balticon 34 Home Page.
Go to the BSFS Home Page.