In brief. SOswing Convention 2015 will be on hiatus. It will return full force in 2016.
The lengthy explanation. The Red Lion Hotel Medford was sold last year and became the Inn at the Commons. After SOswing this May, we confirmed with the Inn at the Commons that we would book our same weekend event in 2015. We were given assurances that the third weekend in May was “our date,” and we were welcomed back with enthusiasm.
A few months after the close of SOswing this year, we were contacted by the Inn at the Commons. They had discovered that the Red Lion had booked our weekend more than a year in advance (very unusual for the industry), and they didn’t tell anyone on the new team coming in. Apparently, a contact bridge tournament is coming to Medford and staying all week. The Inn at the Commons is legally bound to honor the prior reservation. They said they would try to get the bridge group to change their date, as we explained how challenging it is, especially with WSDC requirements, to move a convention date. The group did not move their date.
The Inn is the only hotel in Southern Oregon with a ballroom large enough to accommodate our event (other than the Medford Ramada, which also has a booking on our date--and frankly, it’s not nearly as nice as the Inn). Until recently, were negotiating with a new hotel/convention center in Ashland that was set to open in March 2015, but construction delays have pushed their opening date back indefinitely.
As of now, we have no options for a venue. And, due to the tightness of the WSCD rules and calendar, moving our convention date is not possible. Thus, SOswing Convention 2015 is unavoidably is on hiatus.
The good news is we’ve already got our hotel signed and locked down for 2016, with no dusty contracts from anyone else lurking in the shadows.
More good news! We’ve also just booked an amazing workshop weekend for our May date in 2015. We’re hosting Melissa Rutz & Parker Dearborn! We’ve loved Melissa’s dance and teaching for years, and we’re SO happy to have her back. Parker Dearborn has also been at the dancing at the very top of the WCS professional community for years, leading in every sense of the word. This visit will be Parker's first ever to SO! Honestly, we feel we’ve pulled a bit of a coup that we’ve been able to book them!
Tickets go on sale soon. The first fifty people get the entire weekend for just $50! The next sixty get it for $60… you get the idea.
We sincerely hope you’ll join us for the 3rd weekend in May of 2015 for this amazing and fun weekend, and that you’ll continue to save the weekend for us.
With our best regards,
Dave & Rebecca