The main reason for this survey was the question about whether
you preferred WBC to remain at the Host or move to a more expensive
facility with better amenities. The answer is 57% were in favor
of staying at the Host. However, this is somewhat offset by the
more subjective editorial responses shown below where the presumably
more strongly held convictions were expressed in more detail in
favor of a move by an 88:50 ratio.
Complicating the matter further were the limits imposed on
this theoretical move wherein the highest nightly rate for a room
in this new facility including parking and taxes was all of $140
for 47% of you. That’s a tall order. All I need to do now is find
a nicer, larger facility next to an airport in the mid-Atlantic
region with a vacancy during a specific nine-day period for less
than $19 per day more than we’re paying at the Host. Piece of
cake! For the record, the other spending options were (somewhat
predictably) $160 (32%), $180 (9%) and the high end $200 (13%).
|What You’d Like to See…
||What You Want Not to Change
||How I See It…
A Modern Facility 88: I travel from California and the quality of the facility
and inconvenience of the location has made it not worth the trip
the past five years. / If we need to increase the cost, so be
it. I would rather WBC attract a dedicated group of gamers than
the weekenders or daytrippers who spend just the bare minimum./
Quit catering to the cheap. I understand the desire not to exclude
people, but the sacrifices made to accomodate all detracts from
the overall event.
More Space 7
Better Mass Transit connections 4
Better Lighting 13: Especially in
Better Wi-Fi 7
More Guest Rooms on-site 3
More Rectangular tables 5
More Small Meeting Rooms 1
Personal Storage 1: Is
there any way to consider providing some kind of secure personal
storage options near the gaming areas (especially for those who
walk over from neighboring hotels)?
|The Status Quo
50: I think the HOST has most of the
time, tried to be as accommodating as possible. My daughter one
year lost a wallet in the room with DL and money and it was turned
in and then sent to us. Pre-convention dealings with them have
also been pleasant. For the money and space, I feel that the
HOST offers what we need. Having the lower center available in
case of emergency and also the outside tent for Open Gaming will
alleviate the stress on the auditorium. If the venue is changed,
I want there to be an outside swimming pool to be able to get
out for some sunlight. The HOST allows for casual poolside breaks
with the cabanna and outside grill/snack bar. Many attendees
enjoy this amenity which is not common at most hotels. / I think
we are in a “The devil you know is better than the devil
you don’t” type of situation. Maybe I’m too short sighted
when it comes to where I attend a game convention but for crying
out loud, all we’re doing is playing board games. That’s what
I’m there to do, and I don’t care if its not
in a five star hotel. As long as there’s enough room, then I
don’t think we should move. … Since we can’t have low cost
AND bigger space, I think we should stay where we are. I think
we’ll lose more people if we move to a bigger space, because
board gamers are cheap./ While the Host may not be the ritziest
location and I would have no issues paying for a higher end site,
there are many people who are part of the fabric of the community
who might not be so fortunate. I think that securing the Expo
hall as a backup against mechanical failures is an excellent
step. A new location might bring new friends, but only most likely
at the expense of losing some of the long time participants—which to me on balance does not seem worth the risk if reasonable
contingency planning is possible at the current site. / I just
attended this year for the first time. I have attended many HMGS
Miniature Cons at the Host. Beyond more room for Open Gaming,
I think it was perfect. AC in the Lampeter room was tough, but
those things happen. I stay in a hotel near the Host. That said,
I like the Host for the site. It’s worn, but the hotel “tolerates/welcomes"
gamers and all our habits, or at least most of
them. In the past when big groups like this try to move to Baltimore,
Fredericksburg, etc, it never pans out like you hope. Stay at
push them to improve, and let the gamers who like to whine, whine.
WBC is a good event and the Host works well. Changing will upset
more people than it will make happy, I guarantee it. / Having
it all self contained in one building makes it possible for the
whole family to come and do their thing. The kids are never far
away, and can go back to the room without leaving the building
or crossing a parking lot. It’s a great, low cost family summer
vacation with extended family and friends.
We have explored many sites. Some of them
are better in these qualities and some are worse. Ultimately,
the Board will have to make its decision based on a combination
of all factors.
As for personal storage in the lobby, Host
lacks sufficient storage for its own guests, let alone those
staying elsewhere. Liability and insurance issues preclude this
kind of service here and it will no doubt be a problem in many
other sites as well.
|Better Air Conditioning
||There is nothing
like WBC and the location fits the range of activities. In my
opinion, there has been an overreaction about the air conditioner,
uncomfortable, but accidental, and it should be forgiven. It
shouldn’t change this amazing game con. / As I recall, Hunt Valley
had similar issues.
||Past venues always
look better in hindsight. It is true that one of the reasons
we left HVI was that Host had a better recent history with climate
control at the time. Things change.
Walking Distance to More Restaurants 4
Nearby Alternative Lodging 3: I’m not willing to pay the current $120 per night
when there are cheaper options nearby. I would prefer to camp
for the week instead or worst case find a cheaper hotel. So it
really doesn’t matter to me if you increase the main hotel cost
since I won’t be staying there. That said, I would rather see
WBC move to a LARGER facility, not a smaller one. I really don’t
want to see WBC change to only allow pre-registrants to attend
as that would prevent many of my local friends from just attending
for a day or two (typically last minute).
|Nearby restaurants &
hotels of varying price range within walking distance 15: I like that there are other food options nearby. Maybe
not close enough to fit in between tournament rounds, but when
you’ve got a bit of a gap and are tired of the in-house options,
there are others. / The proxinity of the campground makes it
possible for me to attend. I wouldn’t come without my family,
and a hotel room for that long is prohibitive for us. / Save
some bucks and play Frogger, or stay at the Host? Got to have
walking distance, or is a short car ride “close enough"?
Everyone’s situation is different, and we’ve found our comfort
levels in Lancaster.
||A vastly underrated strength
of the Host is the wide assortment of nearby lodging and retaurant
options within walking distance. This is a feature we are finding
hard to duplicate—let alone surpass—in other sites we have
reviewed. While we encourage everyone to find lodging to their
liking and within their budget, please keep in mind that those
who stay at the convention hotel are the ones really paying the
freight. Your membership fees don’t even begin to dent the cost
of staging an event this size. While we are pleased to be able
to maintain a big tent approach that allows as many people as
possible to attend, be aware that the costs of the conference
are not being born equally. At least one prominent gaming convention
not only caps their attendance but insists on staying at the
host hotel in the interest of fairness.
|Better Access for the Disabled
||Being ADA Compliant is something
we’d certainly like to have in a site, but older facilities can’t
change their layout or add million dollar elevators easily. The
Host obviously has many infrastructure needs that supercede such
major structural changes.
|Parking 2: More parking would be nice.
||Parking 2: Parking is adequate. / Ideal rural setting without
unnecessary extra costs such as paying to park etc.
||The parking situation at the
Host is about as good as it gets. We are having difficulty finding
another site that compares favorably in terms of number of spots,
proximity and cost.
|Golf/Excursions 2: I don’t understand why the Board voted against having
a golf tournament on Tuesday for interested gamer/golfers. It
may be one way to get a few more people to show up longer. Most
organizations that sponsor conventions have some golf options.
WBC offers offsite tours and events. Why not golf? / What do
you like best, and would least like to see changed about the
WBC? / Pesonally, I once
and once only found a couple of the other ’widows’ who were doing
excursion to a tea parlor. It was fun and enlightening, since
I had a chance to talk to them. There were noises made about
providing excursion options for the ’widows’ but there was nothing
done last year, as far as I know. Amish country has all sorts
||WBC does NOT offer excursions.
Individuals may advertise for others to join them on our folders
or website, but BPA does not organize or run such in any way.
The same is true of golf tournaments. The second we sponsor any
type of athletic activity our liability insurance kicks into
a higher gear. I doubt whether everyone would enjoy paying higher
admission fees so that a dozen golfers can turn their private
round on the links into an official tournament.