This was originally published in Watch The Skies.
A couple of weeks ago Watch The Skies did something we’ve never done before. We headed off
site and set up a table at a charity event. Any other time in the past 14 years when something
was going on, people were coming to us. This was new and exciting.
The event was the Carlisle High School SciFi Saturday. This was the second annual version of
the event. I have to say, the turnout and enthusiasm was far, far more than I expected.
The CHS SciFi club was working with a number of charities raising money and donations. The
charities included Project Share, Community Aid and Furry Friends Network. They lined up a
gymnasium full of folks interested in what they had going on and laid out a whole day filled with
This was a charity event, but it really seemed more like a mini convention than anything else. The
participants spanned all kinds of genres. There was a media star there (no, I’m not saying who it
was – you should show up next year and see for yourself) there were artists, costumers, authors,
editors, comic book shops, and all kinds of fun stuff. A DJ set up in one corner. I heard the theme
to Land of the Lost at one point during the day – how often do you hear that blasting from a DJs
speakers? That Game Place was set up and running game demos through the course of the day.
There was a lot going on.
The school had club members ready and willing to help carry things in and out. Everyone’s space
was laid out on a map. Set up was quick and easy. In terms of logistics, I’m not sure it could have
WTS wasn’t actually selling anything. We were there for promotional purposes only. We donated
a couple dozen cans of food to the food drive but that wasn’t the bid deal. The big deal was that
we gave away 90 books. That’s right, we were promoting science fiction, fandom and reading by
giving away books. I believe there were a lot of folks that didn’t know how to feel about what we
were doing. Yes, for free. No, it’s wrapped up so it will be a surprise when you open it. Gave them
all away. Many thanks should be given to Jeff Young (our fearless fanzine editor) for organizing
the book collection and getting our group all set up. It was a grand success.
In all, the only thing I can say was we didn’t see enough people show up. Sure there were lots of
folks in the gym, but it would have been better if it was packed. That’s the part where you come
in. If this even runs again next year (and I suspect it will) I plan to be part of getting WTS there
and participating again. What we need is for YOU to be there. I certainly hope you will be.