The Cow Jumped Over The Mars

Mars Today - December 2002

Dear Friends,

Happy holidays to you & best wishes for a fantastic new year. The MarsCon SF/fantasy convention is now two months away. We encourage everyone planning to attend MarsCon 2003 to please keep an eye on our web site for last minute announcements during the short time we have left and feel free to share this information with friends who also plan to attend. Here is the latest on the convention and other sf-related news. Hope to see you soon!

Booking A Room

NOW is the time to reserve your sleeping rooms with the hotel for MarsCon weekend if you haven't already done so. Our hotel for MarsCon 2003 will be the Holiday Inn Select which is located by Interstate-494 & 34th Ave South in Bloomington, MN, conveniently near the Minneapolis/St. Paul Airport and the Mall of America. This is a new hotel for us, but it is just down the block from last year's location, so it will be easy to find.

Sleeping room rates at the Holiday Inn Select will be $89.95 + tax per day for a regular room or $99.95 + tax per day for a suite. To reserve a sleeping room at the Holiday Inn Select, please call 952-854-9000 or 1-800-HOLIDAY, and make sure to mention "MarsCon" in order to get these reduced rates.

There were a few glitches with the hotel reservation system early on, but we've been assured that the problem is fixed. Even so, we are asking that anyone who experiences any trouble getting their sleeping rooms reserved for MarsCon weekend PLEASE contact us ASAP so that the problem can be solved right away. (Possible problem scenarios: If the hotel reservations desk says the room block is full and you can't get the MarsCon rate, that's a problem. It shouldn't happen... period. If the hotel desk quotes the party floor or "concierge level" rate for suites, rather than the $99.95 cheaper rate, that's a problem. Please tell us about it.)

Getting a room at the hotel is a wonderful way to enhance your convention experience. It gives you a home base, a place to park stuff, entertain friends, and land whenever you finish with partying throughout the convention weekend... not to mention it supports the convention and makes the host hotel very happy with MarsCon. Please reserve your room today.

MarsCon Movie Night

MOVIE SIGN!! Our next movie nights will feature Crouching Tiger Hidden Dragon, an epic tale set in feudal China where great warriors do battle from atop roofs, treetops and even streams, and where a dignitary's daughter is torn between society's expectations, loyalty to an assassin mentor, passion for an outlaw lover, and all-consuming fascination with a magical sword... the Green Destiny. The movie stars Chow Yun-Fat, Michelle Yeoh and Jen Yu.

Show times are Friday & Saturday, December 27 & 28, at 11:30 p.m., at the Plaza Maplewood. The Plaza Maplewood is just off White Bear Avenue on Larpenteur Avenue (south of Hwy 36) in Maplewood, Minnesota.

MarsCon Movie Nights take place at the Plaza Maplewood Theatre on the fourth weekend of each month. Admission price is $4, and ticket sales help us put on a great convention with a reasonable membership rate. Concessions help out the theater, so don't forget your Dots. Have some fun, kick back with popcorn & pop, see a good movie, and hang with other friendly folks!

Party Party Party

It's not too late to get a party room, but the deadline is fast approaching. Party rooms must be booked before the end of January, no later. If you are interested in reserving a party room, just let us know. There are still quite a few rooms available, and individual crew members are ready and willing to move to other floors to make way for more parties if space demands it.

Parties will be grouped together on the 12th and 13th floor of the hotel, close to the Con Suite. A map of the 13th floor is featured on the MarsCon web site at, with a closeup map and list of parties at:, so you can get an idea of the layout. Thirteenth floor will house non-smoking parties, and smoking parties will take place on the twelfth floor.

Party floor rooms are $109.95 + tax per day, and must be booked through the convention. You will not need to contact the hotel. To reserve a party room, please contact MarsCon directly via Email, phone 612-724-0687, or snail mail at P.O. Box 21213, Eagan, MN 55121. If you wish to pre-pay for your party room, let us know and we will send you a confirmation number and instructions on how to pre-pay.

The following room parties are planned for MarsCon weekend thus far:

As the Holiday Inn Select does not offer furniture removal or storage, MarsCon has reserved Room 1319 for bed storage on Friday and Saturday of the convention for parties' convenience. The charge is $50 per party room for bed storage if you decide to use it. Please let us know in advance if you are sure your party will need to use the bed storage room. If demand is high, we will consider booking an additional room for this purpose.

Everyone is very excited about the number and variety of parties this year. A fine time will be had by all. Thanks for partying at MarsCon!!

More Musical Guests

We're happy to announce that Tri-Destiny will be joining us once more for MarsCon 2003. Tri-Destiny is an all-female vocal trio from Salt Lake City, Utah. They offer a combination of enchanting music and unforgettable emotions. Travel through time - from medieval knights in "A Rover" to the bittersweet "Love Lies" of the '90s and beyond - in their concerts of all-original, soft rock, romance music. Their music is divine, and we are so happy to get a second chance to hear it. Star Trek fans will especially appreciate their take on "Mr. Spock." Tri-Destiny's web site may be found at

Last Call For Programming Ideas!

Programming events at MarsCon 2003 will take place in Beacon, Duchess, Regent/Waldorf, and Jonathan/McIntosh (on second floor), as well as inside the specialized programming rooms on the thirteenth floor: Krushenko's, Martian Music, Phobos Filk, and Blue Mars. (A map of the function space may be found on the Hotel information section of the MarsCon web site. As always, programming will be geared toward embracing and celebrating all facets of science fiction, fantasy, gaming and fandom. That includes costuming, hard sciences, the music of fandom, television, movies, radio, comic books, fan fic, poetry, novels, sf/fantasy art, and the usual fannish zaniness.

Programming will feature our Guests of Honor as well as many individual fans, local fan clubs, musical groups, hypnotist Paul Knight, UFOlogist Craig Lang, and distinguished science fiction & fantasy authors who have volunteered to help out, including Eleanor Arnason, Theodore Beale, Bruce Bethke, Paula L. Fleming, P.M.F. Johnson, Peg Kerr, Naomi Kritzer, Harry LeBlanc, Catherine Lundoff, Kelly McCullough, TW Miller, Lyda Morehouse, Sandra Rector, Joel Rosenberg, Kathryn Sullivan, and Joan Marie Verba. Here are a few of the highlights:

For a more in-depth look at how programming is shaping up, feel free to browse through the preliminary program schedule which now appears on the programming section of the MarsCon web site. Other topics we're hoping to work into the schedule also appear there.

Many wonderful ideas for programming events are already circulating, but we're still looking for more. If you are interested in becoming a panelist or presenter for any of the events listed, if you have another idea for programming, or if you would like to help with programming in some other way, please contact Christine at or via one of the other methods listed below. Programming titles and descriptions must be in their final form for printing in the Program Book by January 18, 2003.

Thank you in advance for any contributions you make to programming!

How To Register For MarsCon

Take a break, and register for MarsCon! Registration forms for MarsCon may be found at most local conventions, many comic/gaming stores, at our movie nights, and, yes, even on the MarsCon web site. If you're on the MarsCon mailing list, you'll receive progress reports which also contain registration forms. (If you're not on the mailing list or if your address has recently changed, let us know via one of the methods listed below, and we'll fix it.) Just fill out the registration form and mail it in. On-line registration through PayPal is also available via the web site.

Adults $40 or Children (6-12) $15 until 1/31/03
Adults $50 or Children (6-12) $25 At the Door
Supporting Memberships $15 before 1/31/03
+ $25 when you arrive at con

SF Television News

Lee Whiteside's website is reporting a couple current SF shows are being moved or shown the door. (See also Shows affected include: Birds of Prey (Canceled for poor ratings); Angel (Moved to Wednesdays); Firefly (On hiatus for poor ratings); and Tremors (Delayed by special effects).

Advertise Your Club Or Business!

Advertise with MarsCon and your ad will reach an audience of SF/Fantasy fans, gamers, readers, collectors, and other like-minded people. Please contact us by snail mail, email, or by calling 612-724-0687 for information about the ad specs for the Program Book. Rates are determined by who is advertising - a fan club or non-profit group would use the Fan rate. A business would use the Pro rate. All ads will print in black and white. We are also interested in swapping ad space with other conventions.

Below are the rates for the Program Book. Sizes indicated are the finished ad size, not the page size. No bleeds allowed. We reserve the right to refuse any ad. Ads are due by January 20, 2003.

Program Book Ad Prices:
Cover $125 Fan; $175 Pro
8" x 6.5" $60 Fan; $85 Pro
4" x 6.5" $30 Fan; $50 Pro
Business Card $15 Fan; $25 Pro

Upcoming ConCom Meetings

MarsCon planning meetings (also known as ConCom Meetings) are generally held on the third Sunday of each month, 1:00-4:00 p.m. Meetings are open to all, volunteers and spectators alike, and we encourage you to attend if interested or even mildly curious. [It's a little-known fact that these meetings can actually be fun. Shh...] Here is the schedule for upcoming ConCom Meetings which will all be held at the Holiday Inn Select, I-494 & 34th Ave S, Bloomington, MN:

How To Get There

A map with directions to the Holiday Inn Select may be found on the web at Here are further instructions on how to get there:

Directions: Driving EAST from Bloomington, etc: Take I-494 to the 34th Ave exit. Turn south -- away from the airport -- and drive to 80th Street, the first light. Turn east -- left -- then right at your first opportunity.

Directions: Driving WEST from St. Paul, Wisconsin, etc: Take either Highway 5 (St. Paul) or I494 (Wisconsin) to the 34th Ave exit. In either case turn south -- away from the airport -- and drive to 80th Street, the first light. Turn east -- left -- then right at your first opportunity.

When you turn in, the hotel main entrance & front desk will be directly to your right, and the hotel parking ramp will be directly to your left. The very top floor of the parking ramp connects to the hotel's second floor entrance which overlooks the pool area. Designated handicapped parking spaces are located immediately next to this entrance. Once inside the second floor of the hotel, you will need to go down the hall several feet before you reach the elevators (to your right) which you can take down to the main floor & front desk. If you are driving something too big for the parking ramp, just ask at the front desk. The hotel has additional parking about a half-block away.

Hope to see you there!

Thanks Again To Volunteers! We Could Not Possibly Do This Without YOU!!! More Volunteers Always Welcome And Needed!

MarsCon 2003: "No One Here Is Exactly What He Appears"
Holiday Inn Select, I-494 & 34th Ave S, Bloomington, MN
Feb. 28-March 2, 2003 -- All Weekend Long!

How To Contact MarsCon
E-Mail Address:
Snail Mail: MarsCon, P.O. Box 21213, Eagan, MN 55121
Web Site Address:
Phone: 612-724-0687 (no collect calls, please)

© 2002, 2003 FenSF, Inc. All rights reserved.

See you there!

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This page last revised January 12, 2006 at 01:51 PM