CapClave 2013 is our area's own science fiction and fantasy convention. It's being held this year in Gaithersburg, MD and will run from October 11-13, 2013. .
If you've never tried the con scene, this is a great one to start with. It's small and has a literary focus, so you won't need to worry about huge crowds or cosplay hordes or an unfamiliar city. And it's amazing how much access you can get to famous authors at a con of this size. With George R.R. Martin as this year's guest of honor, this really is an amazing opportunity.
From the website:
Capclave is a small relaxed literary convention with a program that usually focuses on the short fiction form. Our Guests of Honor and other notable authors, editors, artists, and fans of the short fiction form will explore the creation and enjoyment of short fantasy and science fiction genre stories.
Here's a preliminary look at the 2013 programming. Capclave includes author readings, panel discussions, and writers' workshops. There's also likely to be a mass book signing on Saturday evening.
Parking and wifi will be free. There are many restaurants near the hotel for lunch, and we will likely go out for meals together, depending on people's schedules.
Registration is currently available for $60 (through the end of September). There is a special rate of $30 for military, military dependents, and students. With Martin as GoH this year, there's a significant chance that memberships will sell out well in advance of the con, so please don't delay! If you'd like to stay at the convention hotel, room rates are $122/night for a king with sleeper sofa, and you can book here. I expect most of us will be commuting.
Note: When RSVPing, please answer the question requesting your cell #, so that we can coordinate on-site.