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Bids We Won and Lost

Local conventions tend to be held because someone decides to hold them. That's it, at the simplest level, ignoring how much work goes into doing that. Often, they'll set up an organisation, whether non-profit or for profit, to run them under, but it's still up to them.

Regional conventions, such as Westercon, Worldcon or NASFiC, don't work that way. They tend to be owned by out of state groups who run a bidding process, usually annually, for anyone who wishes to run them. If you have a group that wants to do so, you have to work through that process.

That tends to mean putting a team together to run the proposed event; obtaining an agreement from a hotel to host it; attending previous instances of the convention in play to understand how it works; officially placing a bid; trying to persuade people to support your bid (which means persuading them to pay to vote for you); hosting room parties at conventions at which to campaign; and, by the end of it, putting in a whole bunch of work even before you know if you've won the vote or not. Because, if there's more than one bid, someone's going to lose.

Arizona has bid to host many regional conventions over the decades. It's won some and it's lost some.

Winning Bids

The twenty-one instances when Arizona has won a bid are already covered in my Arizona Convention History.

Check out the pages for these by clicking on the links:

Year Convention # Location Chair(s)
1978 Worldcon 36 Phoenix Tim Kyger
1982 Westercon 35 Phoenix Randy Rau
1985 World Fantasy Convention 11 Tucson Randy Rau
1987 NASFiC 3 Phoenix Bruce Farr
1988 SMOFcon 5 Phoenix Bruce Farr
1988 Westercon 41 Phoenix Terry Gish
1991 World Fantasy Convention 17 Tucson Randy Rau & Bruce Farr
1992 Westercon 45 Phoenix Bruce Farr
1994 World Horror Convention 4 Phoenix Doreen Webbert & Jean Goddin
1998 SFRA Conference 29 Scottsdale B. Diane Miller
1998 World Horror Convention 8 Phoenix Doreen Webbert & Jean Goddin
2004 Westercon 57 Litchfield Park Craig Dyer
2004 World Fantasy Convention 30 Tempe Mike Willmoth
2004 World Horror Convention 14 Phoenix Mike Willmoth
2006 Nebula Awards® Weekend 41 Phoenix Lee Whiteside
2009 North American Discworld Convention 1 Tempe Lee Whiteside
2009 Westercon 62 Tempe Mike Willmoth
2012 Costume-Con 30 Tempe Elaine Mami
2013 Browncoat Ball 9 Phoenix Cindy Pickard
2017 Westercon 70 Tempe Dee Astell
2019 Dum-Dum 59 Willcox Frank Puncer

Losing Bids

The instances when Arizona has lost a bid aren't covered elsewhere, so I'm highlighting them here.

Please let us know if we're missing any and support the next bid that arises!

Year Convention # Location Bid Chair Lost To Notes
1978 Westercon 31 Phoenix Greg Brown Los Angeles, CA
1980 Westercon 33 Phoenix Los Angeles, CA
1984 Westercon 37 Phoenix Portland, OR
1985 Westercon 38 Phoenix Sacramento, CA
1987 Worldcon 45 Phoenix Bruce Farr Brighton, UK
1993 Costume-Con 11 Phoenix Frances Burns & Sharan Hoyle Pittsburgh, PA
1993 Worldcon 51 Phoenix Eric Hanson San Francisco, CA 1
1999 NASFiC 7 Phoenix Steve Burroughs Anaheim, CA
2000 Westercon 53 Phoenix Patrick Connors Honolulu, HI
2002 Westercon 55 Phoenix Mike Willmoth Los Angeles, CA 2
2008 Westercon 61 Tempe Mike Willmoth Las Vegas, NV
2014 NASFiC 11 Phoenix Mike Willmoth Detroit, MI
2021 Westercon 74 Phoenix Hal C. F. Astell Tonopah, NV 3

Withdrawn Bids

There has been at least one instance where Arizona bid for a regional convention but withdrew that bid.

Year Convention # Location Bid Chair Lost To Notes
2023 Westercon 75 Tempe Hal C. F. Astell 4


  1. Terry Gish was the original bid chair for the Phoenix in '93 bid to host Worldcon. Eric Hanson was the bid chair at the time the votes were counted.
  2. Patrick Connors was the original bid chair for the Phoenix in 2002 bid to host Westercon 55. Mike Willmoth was the bid chair at the time the votes were counted.
  3. This bid was for the 2021 Westercon but COVID-19 messed with that. The seated 2020 Seattle Westercon delayed until 2021, then went virtual and eventually cancelled entirely, by which point the seated 2021 Tonopah Westercon had moved to 2022.
  4. This joint CASFS and WesternSFA bid was voluntarily withdrawn, even though it was unopposed and past filing deadlines, because the COVID-19 pandemic rendered it non-viable.


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Last update: 25th July, 2021