Upcoming Events: next 12 months

Any I missed?  Fixes needed?
Write me at  alan7388 (at) gmail.com
—Alan M.,  Polyamory in the News



Winter Poly Wonderland
January 27–30, 2017
Abrams Creek Retreat Center, Mt. Storm, WV



Michael Rios, Sarah Taub, and friends in Network for a New Culture organize the four annual Polyamory for All Seasons workshop retreats at the Abrams Creek Conference Center in West Virginia. Their goal for these is to build, over five days, an enduring network of like-minded people who don't fall out of touch as happens after most events. “The point is building tribe,” says Michael.

I've gone to their (mostly poly) Network for a New Culture Summer Camp East for the last five years, and can say that New Culture's practices for community creation and interpersonal-skills development are ideal for this ambitious project. “Here is where you can meet other poly people at a deeper level, learn the skills needed to handle your relationships, and become a part of a supportive network of people who share your relationship values.” A good place to get your winter hygge on.



● Poly Living East (Philadelphia)
February 3–5, 2017
Philadelphia, PA


Poly Living is put on each year by the Loving More nonprofit group, in an excellent large hotel near the Philadelphia airport and a rail stop. This will be Poly Living's 12th year (the 10th under Loving More's management). For the last few years Poly Living East has been drawing about 200 people. Here was the 2016 workshop list, to give you a sense of what goes on. Here's my writeup of the first Poly Living I attended (2006). In 2012 I gave the keynote speech. I'll be back again this time. Hope to meet you there!

Loving More, "supporting polyamory and relationship choice since 1985," is the original poly organization of the modern era and played a central role in getting the whole movement going.


International Conference on the Future of Monogamy and Nonmonogamy
February 10–12, 2017
Berkeley, CA


Now coming into its fifth year (the sixth counting an earlier conference in Europe), this conference is organized by Dr. Dave Doleshal, longtime West Coast poly and sex-positive organizer. The 2015 conference had seven sessions, described as follows:


The Friday night session is geared towards Psychology/Social workers/Therapist types and medical professionals, but anyone is welcome to attend.

The [three]  main academic sessions are on Saturday. This is the core of the event. Most of these presentations will be standard types of psychological and sociological studies, but we are trying to attract presentations from as a wide variety of disciplines as possible. Student presentations are also very welcome!


We are also having a session for presentations related to Folklore/Mythology/Media studies, and another session devoted to historical/humanities studies as well.


There will also be an Art Exhibition on Friday afternoon, consisting of art objects related to the theme of consensual nonmonogamy. If you have created such a work of work and wish to display it, please contact us.


The political conclave and sessions related to poly-activism are all happening on Sunday. The Political session is being run as a distinct event through a separate website and has a separate registration fee, but it happens nearby on the same weekend.


In previous years, a variety of impromptu poly-related meetings, parties, and other events were instigated at places nearby the conference site to take advantage of the presence of the influx.... The trend seems to be accelerating.


● Kleines Polytreffen, Winter (Germany)
February 24
28, 2017
Fulda, Germany

Since 2008 the German organization PolyAmores Netzwerk (PAN) e.V., at Polyamory.de, has been organizing transregional "Poly Meetings" for German-speaking polyfolks in Germany, Switzerland and Austria. According to the organizers, the gatherings serve as "a platform for networking and for the exchange of experiences and practical knowhow. Also theoretical discussions and the planning of cultural and political activities. The programme is self organized by the participants. Minimum age 18. Two 'Grand Poly Meetings' take place every spring and fall; these draw 120 to 150 people for up to 70 workshops, talks and other events. The smaller winter meeting gathers about 40. In total the gatherings of PAN have seen more than 1,500 participants." In past years the meetings have sold out within days of being announced.


● RelateCon
March 31 – April 2, 2017
Boise, Idaho

"Empowering Relationship Diversity." This newly-announced, first time con is being organized by the Boise Polyamory Network. "RelateCon provides a unique and supportive gathering place for polyamorous people to connect as a community through educational workshops, social spaces, and opportunities for networking. The core value of this conference is to empower healthy relationships across a myriad of configurations." Facebook. Twitter.

Writes Ginger Polynirvana, "We are able to offer a simultaneous Professional track at RelateCon, which will offer CEUs to a wide variety of disciplines such as lawyers, social workers, counselors, and teachers."



Poly Big Fun
Spring 2017; date to be decided
Bastrop State Park, Bastrop, TX

"PBF is the Austin/ Central Texas Poly group's annual four-day campout/workshop event. We share cabins in the woods and spend the weekend learning from each other (and having an amazing time). This event is open to all regardless of relationship status or location. Registration includes food/lodging for the weekend. This event is entirely volunteer run, so please help us make it happen by transporting gear, attending a cooking party, or volunteering to help run it."

From the website: "Poly Big Fun, or PBF, is a time for us to come together as a community and celebrate. We hold multiple workshops on various relationship-building topics such as effective communication, time management and relationships, multifamily households, community parenting, and more." In 2016 well over 50 people attended, judging from the group photo on the Facebook page



● Rocky Mountain Poly Living (Denver)
April 14–16, 2017
Denver, CO

This will be Rocky Mountain Poly Living's fourth year, after drawing 100 to 150 people for its very successful first three. In 2016 I gave the keynote speech. It's run by Loving More (based in Colorado), which has put on Poly Living East in Philadelphia every February for 11 years. Here's the list of the Denver event's workshops in 2016. Loving More, "supporting polyamory and relationship choice since 1985," is the original poly organization of the modern era and played a central role in getting the whole movement going.


May 2017; date to be decided
Abrams Creek Retreat Center, Mt. Storm, WV



“Endless Poly Summer [in August 2014] went so well, we're planning a whole year of poly retreats!” wrote Michael Rios and Sarah Taub of Network for a New Culture. And so it began. These events aim to build, over five days, an enduring network of like-minded people who don't fall out of touch as happens after most events. "The point is building tribe," says Michael. I've gone to their (mostly poly) New Culture Summer Camp for the last six years, and IMO New Culture's practices for developing community and interpersonal skills are ideal for this. Michael and Sarah have a vision of "turning Abrams Creek into a place where tribe is created" around any number of interests and commonalities. "If you can start creating overlapping tribes all over the place, you can have a very strong social impact."

From the website: “Here is where you can meet other poly people at a deeper level, learn the skills needed to handle your relationships, and become a part of a supportive network of people who share your relationship values.... Spend up to 5 days in a rustic woods-and-water setting, hang out around a bonfire, enjoy a song circle, cuddle up at a snuggle party, learn to take your relationships to the next level, and build connections with others that last all year long! We invite top-notch presenters, and live, work, learn and play together for up to 5 days or more.”

Here is Rebecca Hiles's account of attending the 2015 Spring Poly Fever.



● OpenCon Catalonia
May 26–28, 2017
Galliners, Catalonia, Spain

2017 will be OpenCon Catalonia's sixth year. It was modeled on the U.K. OpenCon with a self-generated "unconference" program. "A weekend-long international event in the Catalan countryside, open to anyone who knows that happy and honest relationships don’t have to be monogamous. Discussions, workshops and socialising to give you a chance to meet like-minded people, to build our community, and to celebrate its diversity." Capacity 40 people; every year it sells out in advance. Here are an account of the 2016 conference and more from past years. The working language is English. Over 18 only.


Atlanta Poly Weekend 2017
June 2–4, 2017
Sheraton Atlanta Downtown, Atlanta, GA


A super-friendly weekend hotel conference of talks and discussions on poly relationships and making them work and whatever other topics people propose; comedy, dance, and games; community building and socializing. Here were the 2016 presenters and schedule. Kid-friendly; families encouraged: a "Kids Con" track runs all weekend (parents are required to volunteer at least an hour per day per kid they bring). I came to the very first APW in 2011, was back again for 2012 (see my writeup) and gave the closing keynote talk in 2013. Total attendance was 113 people the first year, 151 the second, about 200 in 2013, 2014, and 2015, and 226 in 2016.


● Opencon Italia 2017
Date to be decided
Italy

The first Opencon Italia, in 2016, sold out well in advance. It was modeled on the original Opencon UK: an attendee-driven "unconference" with sessions put on by those who wish. The working language is Italian. "The focus is on creating a safe space where participants can share their experience on ethically non-monogamous relationships, and it is set in the beautiful countryside of Umbria in the warm Italian summer, in a hotel with meeting rooms and meeting spaces in the garden." Writes Luca, "Opencon Italia is the child of Opencon Catalonia, of which I have been a co-organizer for two years, which in turn, as you know, has spawned from Opencon UK and has already had another national spawn: Opencon Madrid."


● Polywood Camping 2017
Summer 2017 (dates to be decided)
near Eganville, Ontario


From the 2016 description: "A kid-friendly poly camping weekend, at Raven’s Knoll Campground. Join us for a weekend of community building as we learn from each other via informal discussions, socializing, and fun. Come meet fellow like-minded poly people around the large communal bonfire; take part in various relationship building and strengthening discussions; share your poly knowledge and experiences over wine and cheese." Swimming, showerhouse, food truck. Camper hookups available, dogs welcome. Facebook event page for 2016.


● Network for a New Culture Summer Camp East
July 2017 (dates to be decided)
Abrams Creek Center, Mount Storm, WV

I've attended this interesting, rich, ten-day event for seven years in a row. Network for a New Culture explores building intimate sustainable community through practices of curiosity, transparency, self-exploration, and self-responsibility. The days are structured around ZEGG Forum, various self-improvement and human-potential presenters offering their stuff, and sharing life, work, and play in the West Virginia mountain woods.

New Culture East is largely the work of the much-respected poly activists Sarah Taub and Michael Rios. “While not exclusively a poly event,” says Michael, “Summer Camp East is about 70% polyfolk, and 100% poly-friendly.” Here are my impressions from my first year. Here's a bit more from my fourth (last two paragraphs).

About 75 people attend. Vegetarian group meals; cabins and campsites in the woods (no vehicle hookups); bathhouse with sinks and hot showers. Some indoor accommodations are available onsite. Conditions are rustic, but a camp-owned motel is 3 miles away. Kids welcome; inquire about kids' program.



Rocky Mountain Polyamory Family Campout
July 2017 (dates to be decided)
Aspen, CO

Robyn Trask and Jesus Garcia of Loving More hold this informal campout nearly every year. In 2015 they had 22 people. 2017 will be the 17th year. Robyn writes, "Join us for a weekend of hiking, playing, and just hanging out with other poly families from the Rocky Mountain Region. This is the one thing each year where the kids get to join in. My kids love the campouts as much if not more than I do. It is wonderful to enjoy the beauty of the Colorado Mountains and spend time with wonderful poly people." Contact form.


Großes Polytreffen, Spring (Germany)
June 14–18, 2017
AmWindberg e.V., Germany

The German organization PolyAmores Netzwerk (PAN) e.V., at Polyamory.de, organizes transregional "Poly Meetings" for German-speaking polyfolks in Germany, Switzerland and Austria. The organizers say the gatherings serve as "a platform for networking and for the exchange of experiences and practical knowhow. Also theoretical discussions and the planning of cultural and political activities. The programme is self-organized by the participants. Minimum age 18. Two 'Grand Poly Meetings' take place every spring and fall; these draw 120 to 150 people for up to 70 workshops, talks and other events. The smaller winter meeting gathers about 40." In past years the meetings have sold out within days of being announced.


● PolyDallas Millennium
July 14–15, 2017
Dallas, TX


The theme for 2017 is "Power, Anarchy, and Equality" in Polyamory." This will be the third year, and the second as a full-fledged hotel conference. Ruby Johnson, therapist and co-organizer, writes that the mission of PolyDallas Millennium "is to disseminate knowledge of consensual non-monogamous relationships; provide best practices for consensual non-monogamous relationships; and introduce the community" to them. "In 2015, we had our first symposium: Affirming Polyamorous and Consensual Non-monogamous Relationships. We did a live stream and held it in my private practice. Surprisingly, we had 25 attendees and 5 live-stream participants. It was amazing. This was a one-day event, and the consensus from attendees is that we needed a bigger space and we need to hold it over two days. As a result, PolyDallas Millennium was established." Its theme for 2016 was "Designer Relationships."

"We are dedicated to debunking myths about creative relationship structures and providing guidance, knowledge, and lived experiences to the community. We are not simply an academic symposium. We are sexologists, sex educators, community leaders, and therapists. In 2015 our sponsors were Sex Out Loud with Tristan Taormino, the Association of Black Sexologists and Counselors, and Inamorata LLC. We were AASECT CEU providers and Texas Regulatory providers for LPCs, SWs, LCDCs, LMFTs, and PhDs. Please feel free to email at polydallasmillennium@gmail.com". CEUs are available.



● Poly All Ages Camp BC
Summer 2017 (dates to be decided)
A provincial park, BC, Canada (location to be decided)

This is a kid-friendly polycamp with programs for grownups too. "A weekend of camping and activities with people who share a common philosophy of abundant love, honest and open communications.... Children from [poly] homes gain a sense of community from attending events like this one where other children from similar homes are in attendance," writes organizer Zoe Duff. "Activities and workshops for all ages are simultaneously held, and the facilities are comfortably supportive of a community atmosphere." Facebook page for 2016.



Endless Poly Summer
August 2017 (dates to be decided)
Abrams Creek Retreat Center and Campground, Mt. Storm, WV


This will be the fourth year for Endless Poly Summer, one of the quarterly seasonal poly retreats that Sarah Taub, Michael Rios and friends produce at Abrams Creek. These aim to build, over five days, an enduring network of like-minded people who don't fall out of touch as happens after most events. (That's the ‘endless’ part.) 
The point is building tribe, says Michael.

I've gone to their (mostly poly) Summer Camp East for the last seven years, and I can say that New Culture's practices for community creation and interpersonal-skills development are really ideal for this purpose. Michael and Sarah have a vision of turning Abrams Creek into a place where tribe is created around any number of interests and commonalities. If you can start creating overlapping tribes all over the place, you can have a very strong social impact.

From the website: “Here is where you can meet other poly people at a deeper level, learn the skills needed to handle your relationships, and become a part of a supportive network of people who share your relationship values.... Spend up to 5 days in a rustic woods-and-water setting, hang out around a bonfire, enjoy a song circle, cuddle up at a snuggle party, learn to take your relationships to the next level, and build connections with others that last all year long! We invite top-notch presenters, and live, work, learn and play together for up to 5 days or more.”

Here is Rebecca Hiles's account of attending Spring Poly Fever 2015.


● Polycamp Northeast
August 18–21, 2017
Southeastern New Hampshire


This 3½-day event began with a smashing success in August 2016. I met 50 extraordinary people, mostly new to me, who self-organized a variety of talks and fun activities: nonviolent communication techniques, radical sustainability, the latest STI information, yoga, volleyball, campfires, board games, cuddle party, dance. The venue is a well-equipped summer camp (all the cabins have private baths) in the New Hampshire lakes region north of Boston. Waterfront with paddleboards, canoes, water trampoline. Three meals a day included. On the closing day the organizers (from the Boston Metro Area Poly Meetup group) were already planning for 2017. "The camp owners/staff really liked us and wanted us back." Facebook page.


At Burning Man
Aug. 27 – Sept. 4, 2017
Nevada desert

(Note: You cannot get into Burning Man without a ticket that's legitimate by Burning Man's anti-scalper rules.)
Poly Paradise theme camp.
Poly Paradise has been running at Burning Man for almost two decades. This is a large theme camp, about 200 x 500 feet; it grew from 170 campers in 2012 to 284 in 2016 (more than a third of them new in 2016). Workshops and events include Heart of Now, Poly High Tea, the famous Human Carcass Wash, the Hiney Hygiene Station, Mind Melt, Revolutionary Honesty, and a poly mixer. Writes Benevolent Dictator Scotto, "There is no doubt that it gets better & better each year." Details.


● Non-Monogamies and Contemporary Intimacies Conference
Aug. 31 – Sept. 2, 2017
Vienna, Austria


This biannual academic conference is spearheaded by Daniel Cardoso, Portugal's leading poly researcher and activist. From the description of the first one, held in Lisbon in 2015: "Traditional concepts and practices regarding marriage, family, sexuality, and intimacy have been changing rapidly in recent decades. There have been radical revisions of thinking and practice not only related to sexuality but also involving gender roles, single-parenthood, family structures, contraception, abortion, and divorce.... The rise in critical discourses regarding normative sexualities and intimacies (and the ways in which these two elements interact) calls into question the traditional paradigm of lifestyles that have been at the core of the sex-gender system, as well as hetero-mono-normative institutions and practices in general.

"Our goal is community-building within and beyond academia in all its fields and disciplines, challenging traditional models of the hegemonic Global North system of knowledge production." The working language in 2015 was English. Facebook page.


OpenCon Madrid (Spain)
Late summer 2017; date to be set
Avila, Spain


"OpenCon Madrid is an international event open to all those who want to discover that happy and sincere relations are not necessarily monogamous." This is a self-organized unconvention in the style of OpenCon Catalonia, OpenCon Italia, and the original OpenCon in the UK. "Debates, workshops and recreational activities that will give you the opportunity to meet people with your same ideas and attitudes, share experiences and concerns, help strengthen our community and enjoy its diversity." The working language is Castilian. 2017 will be OpenCon Madrid's third year. The venue in 2016 was a large house in the country 100 km from Madrid, maximum capacity 70. The event sold out many weeks in advance.



Großes Polytreffen, Fall (Germany)
Fall 2017 (dates to be decided)
Gut Frohberg, Germany


Since 2008 the German organization PolyAmores Netzwerk (PAN) e.V., at Polyamory.de, has organized transregional "Poly Meetings" for German-speaking polyfolks in Germany, Switzerland and Austria. According to the organizers, the gatherings serve as "a platform for networking and for the exchange of experiences and practical know-how. Also theoretical discussions and the planning of cultural and political activities. The programme is self organized by the participants. Minimum age 18. Two 'Grand Poly Meetings' take place in the spring and fall; these draw 120 to 150 people for up to 70 workshops, talks and other events. The smaller winter meeting gathers about 40. In the last years the meetings have been sold out within days."



Polyday 2017

Fall 2017 (date to be decided)
UK (location to be decided)


"A one-day event for everyone who knows that happy, healthy and honest relationships don't have to be monogamous, Polyday combines a day of discussions, evening entertainment and social space to give you a chance to meet like-minded people, to build our community and to celebrate its diversity. At Polyday you'll meet a wide variety of people who all have different answers to a range of different questions, but who all want to explore the possibilities for happy, healthy and honest non-monogamous relationships. There will be talks and discussion groups throughout the day, followed by an evening of entertainment and socialising." Organizer Taboo LaRasa says Polyday has been getting 300-350 people.


Fall Into Poly
Fall 2017 (dates to be set)
Abrams Creek Retreat Center, Mt. Storm, WV




Another in the quarterly Polyamory for All Seasons series of retreats at Abrams Creek Retreat Center in the mountains west of Washington DC. "The point is building tribe," says co-organizer Michael Rios of Network for a New Culture. From the website: “Here is where you can meet other poly people at a deeper level, learn the skills needed to handle your relationships, and become a part of a supportive network of people who share your relationship values.... Spend up to 5 days in a rustic woods-and-water setting, hang out around a bonfire, enjoy a song circle, cuddle up at a snuggle party, learn to take your relationships to the next level, and build connections with others that last all year long! We invite top-notch presenters, and live, work, learn and play together for up to 5 days or more.”


Beyond The Love
November 2017 (dates to be decided)
Columbus, Ohio



This hotel conference began in 2013 and was a success from the start. For the last two years it has sold out several weeks in advance, with about 240 people attending. In 2017 it'll have a new hotel with more capacity. I've gone every year but the first (see my 2014 writeup). I'm impressed by how imaginatively the organizing triad and the volunteer staff plan everything to make it lively and fun. They write, "Beyond The Love’s mission is to provide an opportunity for the polyamorous community to come together in an educational and social forum. At Beyond the Love you will find a wealth of classes, workshops and mini events to learn tools, techniques and communication skills to enhance our poly relationships. We provide a safe environment for meeting with other like-minded people in a supportive and inclusive community. We are passionate about recognizing poly as a relationship choice and sharing common experiences on our many different paths."

Here were the 2016 presenters and classes. Evenings featured a full schedule of mixers, games, and an Eighties Ball. Over 18 only. Facebook page.

The organizers are eager to share what they've learned about how to put on a successful poly hotel conference with anyone else who'd like to do so. Including their project-management software covering everything to do starting six months ahead. Contact Dan Belum: producers (at) beyondthelove.org.


2018
To come. . . .





To add an event (of wide geographic interest, please) email it to me at alan7388 {at} gmail.com.



Kimchi Cuddles characters and stories are based the cartoonist's real life. See her followup strip. And yes, she and Rajeev did both make it to Beyond the Love in Columbus, Ohio, November 11-13, 2016.







How to find your LOCAL POLY COMMUNITIES
and their get-togethers!

For socials, potlucks, discussions, etc. near you, find and join your local poly group(s). You can:

● Try googling polyamory [your state or city]

Check Meetup.com with keyword polyamory. Enter your zip code or city.

Search Facebook for polyamory [your state or city].

● Check these lists:

– List of Local Poly Groups maintained on Facebook. It's editable! If yours isn't here yet, add it.

– Tristan Taormino's big list (needs updating), on the website of her book Opening Up. (Send additions, corrections, and changes to raymond (at) puckerup.com )

 Canadian Polyamory Groups, courtesy of the Canadian Polyamory Advocacy Association.

– Local Poly Group Registry, currently hosted by Michael Rios at polyinfo.org. This once-grand list seriously needs updating. Send additions, corrections, and changes to groups (at) polyinfo.org. If you can put in some time on the updating project that would be a great help; write to that address.

---------------------------------------------------------

Can't find a local group near you? Maybe that's the universe saying you should start it!

Here is Bhramari Devi Dasi's story of how she started a thriving local poly group in the middle of nowhere, with about 25 regulars.

And here are Joreth's many thoughts on the kinds of poly community events that might work in your area. She's been an organizer for a long time and has pretty much done it all.

Prefer audio? From the Polyamory Weekly podcast: Episode #181, How to attend or organize your first poly munch; Episode #365, Building your poly community with meetups; and Episode #464, Building Your Poly Community as it grows.