Q: Why does the German con have a different name now?
A: Since 1997 (wow- for 20 years!) there has been a convention in Germany called “FilkCONtinental”, which was founded by Kirstin Tanger and myself. Kirstin and I agreed many years ago that the Con would only be a FilkCONtinental when we both worked on it. Since Kirstin cannot help run the convention this year, I chose a different name. This also underlines that maybe this year is a little different than normal; but not a lot as many of the people are really the same. It’s all quite harmless 🙂 FilkCONtinental is not at the end!
Q: Why are the proceeds from the auction not going to the Filk Fund?
A: Since I am financing this con myself, and I am not using the Filk Fund to underwrite it, I have taken the liberty of implementing the idea of a fundraiser for the auction instead. The work of the Sternenbrücke Children’s Hospice has touched me a lot, so I would like to donate any financial surpluses from the Con, as well as the auction proceeds, to this institution. By communicating clearly in advance where the auction proceeds will go, everyone is free to participate at their own comfort level. The goal is that as I started from zero in funding this convention, I should end back at zero with the Children’s Hospice benefitting from any surplus. And, if we lose money (which, according to my calculations, should not happen- but you never know!), then that is my own misfortune. 🙂
Q: Why can’t I book a twin, or single room?
A: As this is a youth hostel, we reserve a certain number of beds, not rooms. The hostel assigns rooms to us based on our bed reservation – while they get a “wishlist” from us, we do have a limited amount of choice. Afterwards we play “Tetris” and try to fulfill all allocation requests according to your specifications. But, to be truthful, assigning rooms does not always run as smoothly as we would like. And of course, we also have to be careful not to leave too many beds empty (as we have to pay by the bed, remember!). Therefore, we can not promise from the outset that you will get a single or twin room – there simply are not that many to go around. But as you may have noticed, if you’ve ever been to a FilkCon, we go to great lengths to make everyone as happy as possible in the end.
Q: Is the convention location accessible/suitable for wheelchairs or mobility impaired people?
Unfortunately, we have to say that this is not the case. While the youth hostel does offer a few bedrooms which are accessible/suitable for people in a wheelchair, the overall layout of the hostel has some odd angles and areas which are only accessible if you are able to walk/climb some stairs. The bigger guest house is equipped with an elevator, but the way from there to the restaurant as well as to the music house with our function spaces is only accessible via some flights of stairs (max. 2 floors).
Q: Why can’t I book myself as a day guest right now?
A: We get our function rooms for free based on a certain number of occupied beds (or pay a very small amount, depending on the number of beds sold). The more people prefer to sleep outside and only come as a day guest, the more expensive the function rooms are. Therefore, we want to fully occupy our quota with overnight stays before we make commitments for day guests.
Q: Do I need to bring bedsheets and towels?
A: You do not have to bring any bedsheets; this is included in our price and they are provided on the day of your arrival. However, you should bring your own towels with you, as these are not provided by the hostel. You may even want to consider bringing hand soap and small hand towels for yourself – whatever you need to make your stay as enjoyable as possible! If you come from afar and towels fill up your luggage way too much, talk to us, we might be able to arrange help.
Q: Tourist Tax? What is that?!?
A: Wernigerode is a certified health resort, and accordingly, the youth hostel tax must be paid per guest per night to the community. You can not do anything about that … but you also get a little “ticket booklet”, with which you get discounts at some shops or tourist activities in town. One advantage of this is that with the booklet, you can use the local bus network for free! If you want to have a booklet, you can get the booklet at the reception of the hostel. The tourist tax is already included and paid in advance in your registration for the weekend. (Adults pay 2.50 EUR per night, children 6-17 pay 1.25 EUR per night.)
Q: Why is there a “Toastmaster” and not a Master of Ceremonies?
A: Well, we said that we’ll do some things differently! 😉 In the USA, the “job” that Franklin has been doing at FC for years is called the Toastmaster. Even with all the fun he has with it, remember that this is work, and actually quite a bit of it. Therefore US filkcons treat their Toastmasters as a guest, who have to work for their guest experience and concert. So you will not only see Franklin as an announcer this time, but he also will have his own concert! It is worth it!