Delegates Report 2015 International Convention of Alcoholics Anonymous
There is important information about A.A.’s 2015 International Convention in Atlanta now spelled out in the summer edition of GSO newsletter BOX 4-5-9. Go to the aa.org world service website of AA. An exact quote from the report reads as follows:
Registration forms for the 2015 International Convention, in Atlanta, Georgia, July 2-5, will be mailed around the world in August. You can get your form from your GSR, your area structure, your local intergroup/central office, from your GSO, and, of course, on GSO’s website, www.aa.org. You may also register online starting September 3.
Registration is $100 if paid before May 12 2015. Your registration badge entitles you to attend all Convention events, including the Thursday night Party in the Park, the Stadium meetings on Friday, Saturday, and Sunday in the Georgia Dome, and all of the marathons, panels, workshops, and topic, special interest and other meetings at the Georgia World Congress Center and nearby hotels.
As your delegate I’d like to make some important points of emphasis — there is no way to get registered before 9 am Eastern Standard Time on September 3, 2014. And, although hard copy forms referred to above can be filled out and mailed in mid to early August, no one will get officially registered any earlier than the 9 am on September 3. That means those waiting for hard copy responses from the hard copy registration forms will probably be waiting for several days after September 3 before the postal service delivers your registration number that will then be used when applying for and reserving hotel housing. The hard copy process might be preferred my some in Area 53 but it will require multiple mailings. I personally am going to go online 9-3-14 to get the complete process done in a sitting. I’ve been told some AA running buddies, groups of AA friends are holding registration parties where the one-stop online process could be accomplished and probably would be an attractive approach for some AA’s planning the trip with friends.
Whatever the choice I understand Atlanta will be a good host. In talking with GSO contacts it is significant to report two differences you will notice between 2010 in San Antonio and the upcoming Atlanta convention. Difference:
1) the close proximity between the Georgia Dome and the main convention venues. In 2010, many will recall that the domed stadium in San Antonio was a mile or more walk from the main venues where all the daily workshops, panels, AA archives, GSO displays, etc. were held Thursday, Friday and Saturday of convention week. In contrast, the convention venue in Atlanta will resemble a relatively compact hub around which multiple spokes connect together making for greater convenience in hopping from speakers panels and workshops of interest. I hear the Georgia Dome is so close it’s like crossing the street.
2) Atlanta’s mass transit system, MARTA, is a superior mode of transportation that is available for efficient movement from all parts of the greater Atlanta metro area. For example, if you happen to get a convention hotel at the airport, I’m told that is not an inconvenience. A MARTA ride from the airport to the main convention venues takes about 15 to 20 minutes. Discounted passes for MARTA will be available for purchase on the Convention Registration Form. It also must be noted that MARTA will be the mass movement method for this 2015 international convention. In 2010 AAs took ‘free’ big buses to get to and from their outlying convention hotels. Those contracted buses won’t be employed in Atlanta. There will be free shuttle transportation available to-and-from hotels to the Convention center for members with special needs only. All the regular drunks would be smart to get a MARTA ticket.
For further updates and answers to common questions about the convention and other Area General Service questions please sign-up on the Area 53 website to keep informed. Hope you can make it Happy Joyous Free Atlanta July 2 – 5, 2015.
Dave C., Delegate Area 53 Central and Southeastern Ohio