All posts by Sharon VanBlarcom

FARPOINT 2021 GATHER TOWN & DISCORD INSTRUCTIONS

Click here for a printable PDF of these instructions that includes details on the Gather icons you will be using.

Click here to check out our interactive schedule app that allows you to pre-register for events and set a personal schedule for the convention! Pre-registration is not necessary but expedites your entry into the individual activities.

What you need:
● A desktop/laptop with a mic and camera.
● A web browser (Chrome or Firefox recommended).
● We strongly recommend using headphones to help prevent feedback.
● That’s it! There’s nothing to install, no software to download.

To access Farpoint on GatherTown, click on this link:
https://gather.town/app/YRPETqgYG6KzZ5nF/FarpointCon
Enter the one-time password: StarTrek

GatherTown will ask to access your microphone and your camera. If you wish to interact with others on the virtual con floor, you will need to allow access to both.

Type your name in the block below “What Is Your Name?” and press the “Join the Gathering” button.

You’re now in the lobby of our virtual Farpoint! Use your arrow keys to move around. In the lobby you will see:

● A Tech Support area: move your character onto one of the chairs in this area and a tech guru will help you with any problems you may have
● A Schedule area: move your character onto one of the chairs and access the convention schedule
● An Info area: move your character onto one of the chairs and chat with staff at our information desk
● There are tables and chairs in the lobby; move your character onto one of the chairs, and you can talk with other folks at the table
● Cinnamon Tree Restaurant/Polo Bar & Lounge: two more areas where you can hang out and chat with other con goers.

How it works:
● Gather is a video chat platform that has avatars move around a map. As you get close to other avatars, your videos will pop up and you will be able to chat.
● Move around the space using the arrow keys.
● By moving your avatar around you can have spontaneous conversations with those around you. These can be either one-on-one or small groups depending on how many people are around your avatar.
● When your avatar moves closer to an interactable object, it will glow yellow and there will be a notification that shows up saying ‘Press x to interact with -object-’. This can range from informational flyers, playable arcade games, integrated Zoom meetings, and more!

Explore Virtual Farpoint!
Just like the Hunt Valley, we’ve set up an upper level and a lower level filled with convention fun! Wander the corridors of our virtual convention space to find:

Upper Level:
● the Pool – two hot tubs areas where you can hang out and chat
● the Art Show – with links to artists’ websites
● Gaming – walk up to a table and join a game!
● Green Room – for panelists to hang out (requires a password to enter)
● Staff Room – for staff members to hang out (requires a password to enter)
● Access points to the Lower Level

Lower Level:
● Panel Rooms – check the sign in front of the room to see the schedule of panels going on in that room. The sign will glow yellow and there will be a notification that shows up saying ‘Press x to interact with -object-’; press x on your keyboard to “attend” the panel!
● Dealers Area – with links to dealers’ websites
● Ballrooms – check out our virtual Ten-Forward happening in the Valley & Hunt Ballrooms – with a music playlist courtesy of Vic’s Place and the Pack Ratz!

The other tool we’ll be using is Discord.

The Farpoint discord server can be found under https://discord.gg/NVxrsSgd8M
This should bring you to either the web or if you already have it installed, the desktop application and straight to the Farpoint server.

When you join the server you will see 2 channels. The rest are hidden until you accept our Code of Conduct.
● The first channel is called Help! This is if you are having problems accepting the Code of Conduct or any other technical issues.
● The second is 01-START HERE! This is where you should start. In that channel you should see a message that has our Code of Conduct. To accept the code of conduct click the thumbs up directly below that message.
● Once you click this you should have more channels show up including Channel 02-Interests which should be your next place to go.
In this channel you’ll see the categories After Panel Discussion, Fan Tables, Dealers, and Gaming, each one with its own icon. Clicking on that icon below the message will turn on that category so you can see it in the sidebar. Clicking it again will turn it off. This is so that you can see only the content you are interested in. You can come back at any time to change these choices.

Once you have selected which categories you’re interested in please move on to the 03-Introductions channel. In here please post who you are and how people would know you in meetspace.
Now you’re on the server.

In front of the channels on the sidebar you’ll notice two different symbols. A # or a speaker symbol. The # marks a text channel, the speaker symbol an audio & video channel, which you can join to have discussions with up to 25 users in a single channel.

To join an audio channel, click the channel. At the bottom of the channel list a box will appear with a mute button, a deafen button to turn off your speakers temporarily, a video button to turn on and off your camera and a screen share to share things such as photos of your dogs, or costumes or whatever you’d like to share. You’ll also see a little phone icon with an ‘x’ as the way to leave an audio channel. You can be in only one audio channel at the same time but you can hop between text channels at the same time.

In the category General Discussions we have a channel called Announcements where you can go and see announcements including schedule postings.

Other channels in the General Discussions category are General, Lobby, Polo Lounge and Bar, and Frankie and Vinny’s. All these places are for general discussions of any topics which you would normally have in convention hallways.

Other categories you may have turned on are
● After Panel Discussions which is sorted by room, please keep the discussions to the rooms that correspond with the panel subject.
● Dealers and Fan Tables are places to chat with whichever dealers and fan table host might be around at the time
● Gaming where games such as horizons, jackbox games, and possibly table top rpg’s will be hosted.
Each category has a caret symbol next to it, clicking on that collapses the list of channels within or brings them back. When the category is collapsed, you will see channels that have unread messages only under that category.

By clicking on the caret next to the server name and going to Notification Settings you can change which notifications you get from this server.

While Discord has a large variety of other features these are the ones we feel should be highlighted. If you have further questions please feel free to message our Tech Crew. If you have any problems you can create a ticket in the Open Tickets Channel by typing -ticket open insert reason hear

VIRTUAL CONVENTION UPDATE #2 – with surprise guests!

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The schedule for #FarpointCon2021 has been published! The link to access the event will be published once we have finished setup and testing of our online platform. Links are also coming soon for our virtual Program Book and updated KonOpas interactive schedule app. Attendance at #FarpointCon2021 is FREE for all and does not require advance registration.

We are thrilled to announce that our friends John Billingsley from “Enterprise” and his wife Bonita Friedricy from “Chuck” will be making an appearance with us on Saturday 2/20/21 at 4:00 PM EST! John and Bonnie are fan favorite guests and are sure to bring the fun with them in their conversation with us. One of their important focuses during the pandemic has been their work with the Hollywood Food Coalition. Please visit https://hofoco.org to learn more about this important cause.

We will be having a virtual Masquerade Costume Contest as part of our #FarpointCon2021 online event. Please note that it will take place on SUNDAY 2/21/21 at 1:00 PM EST instead of its normal Saturday evening placement on our schedule.

Our Hal’s Place Gaming Oasis is also planning some virtual activities during #FarpointCon2021! Please bookmark their page here on our website for updates as they become available.

Virtual Farpoint Convention UPDATE!

We are working to establish our online platform and schedule for #FarpointCon2021. Look for additional information on the schedule and links to connect in early February!

CALLING ALL COSTUMERS AND COSPLAYERS – here is your chance to be part of our virtual Farpoint 2021 convention. We will be premiering our virtual 2021 Masquerade Costume Contest on Sunday, 2/22/21 via a video compilation of your entries! We hope to be receiving your entries and enjoying your talent and creativity to help our community connect online as we spend this time physically apart. Additional information on participating in our Virtual Masquerade Costume Contest can be found here.

ATTENTION Vendors, Dealers, Authors, Artists, Clubs, Conventions, Community Organizations!!! Would you like to participate at our Virtual Farpoint Convention, coming next month on Saturday/Sunday 2/20 and 2/21? If yes, we are happy to offer you a complimentary table for the event. What we need from you – a graphic, description and website link for your table. We will set up the virtual table space in our online convention dashboard and it will go live during the weekend. Send us your info by 1/31/21 to Contact@FarpointCon.com! You will also be able to “man” your table live online during the event via our GatherTown event dashboard. Training on how to use GatherTown and manage your table will be held the weekend of Sat/Sun 2/6-7/21. Details on the offering times and link to join the training will be coming soon.

Virtual Convention announcement – Farpoint 2022 Date

With a heavy heart, we must announce that Farpoint Convention 2021 will be a virtual event on Saturday and Sunday, February 20-21, 2021. This decision was reached after considering every option available to hold a live event safely. Unfortunately, the recent resurgence of the COVID-19 virus has compelled Maryland to move back to Phase 2 of the reopening plan. Indoor gatherings under Phase 2 have a recommended cap of 25 people, making an event of Farpoint’s scale impossible to stage safely as the health and safety of our staff, guests, and attendees is our primary concern. We know that this decision may have seemed inevitable in the face of this global pandemic, but it is no less heartbreaking.

Our online Farpoint Convention 2021 will be free for all and will utilize the Gather.Town online application. We are excited to utilize Gather.Town as it allows us to personalize a convention dashboard into a series of “rooms” to enter and exit as you attend panels, visit vendors and artists, and attend meetings. A schedule of events is being prepared and will be published closer to the event along with the link to our event and instructions on how to utilize the application.

Farpoint Convention 2022 will be held at the Delta Hotel by Marriott, Hunt Valley, MD on February 25-27, 2022. Maisie Richardson-Sellers from “Legends of Tomorrow” has already confirmed that she will join us in 2022. We are waiting to hear from Sean Gunn from “Guardians of the Galaxy” but hope he will also be able to participate. Convention ticket sales and hotel room reservations for 2022 will be available in Spring 2021.

Everyone at Farpoint Convention and Farpoint Foundation send best wishes for a safe and happy holiday season. Please stay safe so we can see you all again in 2022.

  • ATTENDEES who have pre-registered for 2021 will be contacted for a decision on whether they wish to transfer their registration to 2022 or receive a refund
  • HOTEL ROOM RESERVATIONS will be cancelled by the hotel and you will receive a confirmation of the cancellation separately from Marriott
  • COSTUMERS/COSPLAYERS wishing to participate in our Virtual Masquerade should prepare to submit their entry video by late January 2021 with specific instructions posted to the Costuming/Cosplay page of our website and on social media as soon as possible
  • GUESTS from our program tracks will be contacted about participating in our 2021 virtual convention and invite them to return in 2022
  • ART SHOW pre-registrants for 2021 will be refunded their fees if already paid and receive information on participating in the 2021 online event
  • DEALERS / VENDORS who have pre-registered for 2021 will be contacted for a decision on whether they wish to transfer their registration to 2022 or receive a refund and receive information on participating in the 2021 online event
  • FAN CLUBS and CONVENTIONS interested in holding meetings or setting up a virtual table in the 2021 online event should contact us no later than January 15, 2021 to request space

#FarpointCon2021 Panels!

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Calling all #fans with opinions! If you would like to check out our list of #FarpointCon2021 panels and maybe volunteer as a panelist, send us an email to request a copy of the 2021 Panel Selection form. #FarpointCon2021 is still scheduled for February 19-21, 202. At the moment we are waiting to see what Maryland’s rules will be at the beginning of the year for gatherings to determine if it will be live or virtual. Bookmark this page and follow us on social media (Facebook, Twitter, Instagram) to be the first to know the news!

Farpoint 2021 Celebrity guests

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Please join #TeamFarpoint in welcoming Sean Gunn and Maisie Richardson-Sellers as our first celebrity guests for #FarpointCon2021!

Sean Gunn is known for his role as Kraglin in the Marvel Universe films Guardians of the Galaxy and Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2. In addition to portraying Kraglin, Sean also provides on-set motion capture performance for Rocket Raccoon for the Marvel Cinematic Universe productions, working in both Guardians films, Avengers: Infinity War and Avengers: Endgame in this capacity. Gilmore Girls fans remember him as Kirk, one of the quirky townies of Stars Hollow.

Maisie Richardson-Sellers is a British actress known for her role as Amaya Jiwe/Vixen and Charlie on The CW superhero series Legends of Tomorrow. She has also played Eva Sinclair on The CW series The Originals, and a starring role as King Saul of Israel’s daughter Michal in the ABC Biblical series Of Kings and Prophets.

Convention membership tickets and hotel room reservations are available now here on our website. We look forward to seeing you at #FarpointCon2021 in February.

Marc Okrand Live Online!

Marc Okrand, professional linguist and creator of the Klingon language, will be chatting with fans and taking your questions on anything from working on Star Trek, creating languages, and translating Shakespeare into the original Klingon on Saturday 8/22/20 at 1:00 pm EDT! This event is part of the free Shore Leave 41.5 virtual program via Zoom – learn more at https://www.shore-leave.com/programming/schedule.htm.

Farpoint 2021 Guest Announcement!

Make a tax deductible donation to Farpoint Foundation






Please join #TeamFarpoint in welcoming Sean Gunn and Maisie Richardson-Sellers as our first celebrity guests for #FarpointCon2021!

Sean Gunn is known for his role as Kraglin in the Marvel Universe films Guardians of the Galaxy and Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2. In addition to portraying Kraglin, Sean also provides on-set motion capture performance for Rocket Raccoon for the Marvel Cinematic Universe productions, working in both Guardians films, Avengers: Infinity War and Avengers: Endgame in this capacity. Gilmore Girls fans remember him as Kirk, one of the quirky townies of Stars Hollow.

Maisie Richardson-Sellers is a British actress known for her role as Amaya Jiwe/Vixen and Charlie on The CW superhero series Legends of Tomorrow. She has also played Eva Sinclair on The CW series The Originals, and a starring role as King Saul of Israel’s daughter Michal in the ABC Biblical series Of Kings and Prophets.

Convention membership tickets and hotel room reservations are available now here on our website. We look forward to seeing you at #FarpointCon2021 in February.

FARPOINT UPDATES!

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FARPOINT CONVENTION 2021
Farpoint Convention is scheduled for February 19-21, 2021. The state of Maryland expects to be fully open for business operations and gatherings by this time. We will be working with the hotel to implement any changes to health and safety guidelines required by the state and/or county.

Our first #FarpointCon2021 celebrity guests will be announced Sunday 5/24/20. Keep your eyes on this website and our social media pages for updates.

#FarpointCon2021 membership tickets and hotel reservations are now being accepted; see links on our website.

We plan to work with our friends at ShoreLeave convention to develop virtual content and events in summer 2020 to encourage and entertain fandom while events are postponed. Keep your eyes on our sites and social media for updates.

FARPOINT FOUNDATION
We are pleased and proud to announce that our new nonprofit, FARPOINT FOUNDATION, has received our official 501(c)3 designation from the Internal Revenue Service. We will happily accept tax-deductible donations from the public and other organizations to further our efforts to support the creative arts in the fields of science fiction, fantasy, comics, horror, and anime. You can donate as part of your #FarpointCon2021 ticket purchase or separately at any time at the link above. Thank you for your past and current support.

We look forward to seeing you at #FarpointCon2021! Our attendees are the most important part of our event. Please send ideas and suggestions to us at contact@FarpointCon.com

#FarpointCon2020 Thanks!

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Everyone on the Farpoint Convention 2020 committee and staff sends thanks to our guests, vendors and attendees for a wonderful weekend! We are very glad you were with us. Please take all precautions necessary to avoid the Coronavirus pandemic we are currently facing because we want to see everyone at Farpoint Convention 2021, to be held February 19-21, 2021 at the Delta Hotel by Marriott, Hunt Valley, MD. #FarpointCon2021