by Janet Dickelman
The American Council of the Blind conference and convention is fast approaching. I have begun sending out convention previews to the convention email list. They will also be aired on ACB Radio for those of you who don’t have e-mail access. The previews provide details regarding programming, tours, hotel materials and menus, as well as information about the Rochester area.
If you received updates for the 2018 convention, you do not need to re-subscribe to the convention announcement list. If you have not been on the list, send a blank e-mail to [email protected].
Convention dates are Friday, July 5 through Friday, July 12; the place to be is Rochester, N.Y., where we will be utilizing the Hyatt, the Riverside and the convention center. General sessions, the exhibit hall, registration and the ACB Café will be located in the convention center; other meetings will be divided between the two hotels.
It is almost time to register for the 2019 convention. Online registration will open on May 22nd and close on June 23rd.
This year we are offering an exclusive opportunity to register early for ACB members. Convention pre-registration beginning May 22nd through May 26th will be open only to ACB members. Registration will be open to everyone beginning May 27th. Registration prior to the convention is easy, saves time, and the earlier you register, the better chance you have of booking tours and attending workshops that have limited capacity.
If you are not currently a member of ACB, you can join as a member at large for $10. To become a member, contact the Minneapolis office at (612) 332-3242. To take advantage of the registration special you must join by May 1st.
Thanks to our generous corporate sponsorships, convention registration will be $15 pre-registration and $25 at the convention. Prior to registration a one-page mailer will be distributed providing registration details. If your email address is in ACB’s database, you will receive the mailer via email, otherwise it will be sent to you via surface mail. The information will also be posted on the acbconvention, leadership, and ACB-L email lists. Once registration opens on May 22nd, you have several options to register for the convention.
You can register online by visiting www.acbconvention.org. If you registered online last year, the username and password you created can be used again. Please make certain to review your profile to make sure your contact information is current and make any corrections.
You can also register via telephone. When you call the registration hotline, 1-800-866-3242, you will be asked to leave a message with your contact information. We’ll need your name, telephone number, the best times to reach you, and your time zone. One of our registration experts will return your call as quickly as possible. Please keep in mind that individuals completing registration forms are volunteers. The registration cadre is very conscientious but, due to the high volume of calls, it may take them a day or two to get back to you.
Paper registration forms WILL NOT be sent unless requested. If you would like a paper registration form, request it from ACB’s Minneapolis office by calling (612) 332-3242 before May 1. Forms will be sent via first-class mail. In the past the paper registration form has mirrored the online form but was extremely long and cumbersome. This year the paper registration form will be a listing of dates, times and events; full descriptions will not be on the paper form. The form will not be used to register; call the registration hotline, and we will complete the form for you. You can pay via credit card or send a check to our Minneapolis office.
Registration at the Convention
Registration in Rochester will open on Thursday, July 4 from 6 to 9 p.m. for registration pickup only. If you miss the 9 p.m. closing time but are on the Friday morning Genesee Country Village tour, you will be on a list and can obtain your tour ticket when you board the bus.
On Friday, July 6 and Saturday, July 7, registration will be open from 8 to 11 a.m. for pre-registration pickup only. This means that only those who registered prior to June 23 may obtain their registration packets. After 11 a.m. registration will be open for pre-registration pickup and for people who have not yet registered. Sunday through Thursday, registration will be open all day for both pre-registration pickup and initial registrations.
Room rates at the Hyatt and the Riverside are $89 per night (single or double occupancy, with an additional $10 per person for up to four people per room). This room rate does not include tax, which is currently 14%. For telephone reservations, call the Riverside at (585) 546-6400, or the Hyatt at 1-800-233-1234. Make sure to mention you are with the American Council of the Blind 2019; rooms must be booked by June 7, 2019 to guarantee the convention rate.
To make reservations online, visit www.acb.org and follow the 2019 convention link.
2019 exhibit information: Michael Smitherman, (601) 331-7740, [email protected]
2019 advertising and sponsorships: Margarine Beaman, (512) 921-1625, [email protected]
For any other convention-related questions, please contact Janet Dickelman, convention chair, (651) 428-5059 or via email, [email protected].