Sunday, January 29, 2006

Fandom Birthday

There was a big party in Turku yesterday. The Turku Science Fiction Society turned 30, and around 40 persons gathered in the restaurant Turun Upseerikerho to celebrate.

Tytti Korhonen wishing the people welcome

After opening words by Tytti Korhonen, there was a dinner. The food was just ok, but there was plenty of wine and good company, so I’m sure everyone was happy.

People sitting at a long table, enjoying the food

After the formal dinner was over, the rest of the visitors arrived (not everybody wanted to eat a meal, so having a less expensive alternative of only participating afterwards was a very good idea). I was glad to see some acquaintances you don’t bump into very often, both from other parts of Finland, and also some who don’t participate often any more.

Nikodemus, Hanna, Saara and Markku Jouni, Jaana and Harri standing and talking Jaakko, Ben and Tomi standing and talking A lot of people sitting at a table talking

TSFS had collected assorted publications from the years past for all to see. Most were, naturally, issues of Spin, but there were also brochures for Finncons held in Turku, and material from book fairs. A new one, a brief history of the society, was released at the event. The leaflet contained essential facts about the society’s history. It is a good thing it was done, but I feel the occasion would have warranted a more thorough approach, with more content (and maybe contributions from people along the way). I know this would have been more than the resources permitted this time, but how about the 30th anniversary of Spin coming next year? An anniversary issue of Spin dedicated to this, perhaps?

Table full of issues of Spin and ofher publications of TSFS The short history of TSFS leaflet along with some flowers

Every birthday must of course have some speeches and presents. Pasi, Saara and I presented Tutka and STk’s gift to TSFS: a subscription of Interzone for the members of the society to enjoy (everybody will be able to visit Terrakoti to read the issues, when they start arriving). Others had nice things to say and give too.

Jaana Gustafsson speaking
Former chair of the society, Jaana Gustafsson, opened the floor with a congratulatory speed.

Elsa and Ipa giving the present from Jyväskylä fandom Johanna holding the big towel from Jyväskylä
The Jyväskylä society 42’s present was very appropriate.

Pasi, Ninni and Jukkahoo from Helsinki
Helsinki fandom gave the extremely generous gift of one free short story (rights and translation) for Spin.

People queuing to taste the birthday cake
Birthday cake was good.

There were a couple of program items later in the evening. One was a quiz printed on the back of the program leaflet: there was one book, movie or event for each year of TSFS’s existence, and we had to connect the items to the correct year. What a wonderful idea! I’m too modest to mention who took the first price with their superior knowledge of sf history trivia…

Jukkahoo and Ben sharing a trophy from the history quiz
Here are Jukkahoo and Ben sharing a prize in another quiz, also related to the history of TSFS.

Ipa giving the NOFF title to Ben
The next NOFF delegate was also announced. As you can tell, Ben didn’t see this one coming.

After the official party was over and the tired little birthday boys and girls of the TSFS board sent to bed, a few of us continued to Bar Bremer for a few more drinks and a lot of talk. I’m not sure, but I think plans to build an old sf folks’ retirement home might have been set in motion. The mind boggles…

All in all, I was very pleased with the evening. Things were planned out nicely, the restaurant was a perfect setting, and the whole event was very much fun. The only glitch was the advance advertising, which was nonexistent outside a couple of e-mail lists, and may have cost the event a few participants. But there’s always room for improvement—next time, an ad in Spin, please? But anyway, a big thanks from me to the organizers and also everyone who participated!

Pictures of the evening

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