In August, Helsinki will host the 75th World Science Fiction Convention, the longest running convention of science fiction and fantasy. The 75th Worldcon will take place in Messukeskus from the 9th to the 13th of August, 2017. Only 20 Worldcons thus far have been held outside the United States, and this is just the fourth time that it has been located in a country whose main language is not English - reports City of Helsinki.
If you are familiar with the concept of Finncon, Worldcon is that 10 times over. Worldcon, though, is not free of charge and only Guests of Honour get to attend without paying, but the event’s purpose is not to generate profit; it is organised and staffed completely by volunteers. Guests of Honour in Helsinki this year are authors Johanna Sinisalo, Nalo Hopkinson and Walter Jon Williams, comic strip (bande dessinée) artist Claire Wendling, and Swedish fan, translator and literary critic John-Henri Holmberg. The Science Guest is British mathematician and science fiction and nonfiction writer Dr. Ian Stewart, who is an Honorary Wizard of Terry Pratchett’s Unseen University. In addition, Worldcon 75’s “Also Appearing” list is packed with the names of many other well-known writers, artists, musicians, editors, publishers, critics, scientists, and fans.
Five days of experiences
The chair of the Helsinki convention board, Jukka Halme expects Worldcon 75 to be an all-encompassing experience for its attendees.
– I expect W75 to be a pervasive experience. People can experience several WOW moments, create new, international connections, and enjoy the full spectrum of science fiction and fantasy literature with old friends. A first-timer should keep their eyes and expectations open, try everything, and enjoy the international atmosphere. During these five days, there is an opportunity to meet and hear dozens of celebrities, to find new friends, and get an overload on all that is available. Hopefully, W75 will be an experience that is never forgotten.
Some of the programme events will also be held at the Pasila Library auditorium, which will of course be free to all.
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