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Writercon 2009 is being held at the Radisson Plaza located at 35 South Seventh Street in downtown Minneapolis, Minnesota. The hotel is centrally located in downtown Minneapolis and is convenient to transportation, restaurants, and a variety of nightlife.
To register in the convention block, attendees can reserve rooms online or call the Radisson at 800-333-3333 or 612-339-4900, using the code "WRITER".
Discounted room rates are available for the nights of Thursday July 30, Friday July 31, Saturday August 1, and Sunday August 2.
|Rate Per Night|
|One or Two Guests In Room||$109 +tax|
|Three Guests In Room||$119 +tax|
|Four Guests In Room||$129 +tax|
|As of October 2008, tax is 13.4%.|
Reservations at these rates are available through Tuesday, June 30, 2009. After that date, reservations will be subject to space availability and billed at prevailing room rates.
Attendees can reserve rooms online or call the Radisson at 800-333-3333 or 612-339-4900, using the code "WRITER".
Check-in is at 3:00PM and check-out is at noon. Earlier or later check-in or check-out may be available upon request and depends on availability. Baggage storage before or after your stay is available at the bell stand in the hotel lobby.
We advise that you do not check in with a debit/check card. Hotels are notorious for imposing a hold for the amount of your stay plus hundreds extra in case of damages, and it can take days or a week to lift. If at all possible, check in via credit card. (This can make checkout smoother, too, if you're just going to allow all the charges to go on that card; usually you don't have to stand in line to check out if the bill they slip under your door is correct.)
We are requesting that Writercon attendees be given rooms on low floors near one another. If for some reason you did not book in the convention's room block but you are planning to stay in the hotel, please let us know and we can attempt to place you near your fellow attendees.
Regular sleeping rooms do not contain a kitchenette. If you find it necessary, you can call the hotel about renting a fridge for your room, for $15/night or $25 for your whole stay.
The convention hotel has free wireless internet in the sleeping rooms (which include the hospitality suite) and spotty coverage (coming from the lobby) in function space. This doesn't mean super-high-speed, but it should be fine for email & LJ. Don't run peer-to-peer clients or attempt to download something large, because it won't work well and everyone else around you will suffer.
The Minneapolis Central Library at 300 Nicollet Mall (3.5 blocks away) provides free internet access (on their computers or your laptop). Hours: Mon: closed; Tue & Thu 10-8, Wed, Fri, & Sat 10-6, Sun 12-5
The hotel is completely non-smoking, as are all workplaces in Minnesota. This means that there is no smoking allowed, even in your own sleeping room. Ignore that rule at your bank balance's peril; the hotel will cheerfully charge you hundreds and hundreds of dollars for steam-cleaning to get the smell out. In order to smoke, you need to go out past the lobby onto the sidewalk and stand at least 25' from the entrance.
There is also no smoking in the hotel bar, but it does have a sidewalk patio, so if you order something you can sit out there and smoke.
The hotel does not have a pool, downtown real estate being what it is. There's a fitness center with a jacuzzi, though. If you have your heart set on splashing and playing in the water, you can walk to an indoor waterpark.
Your room key gets you into the 24-hour business center next to our function space which allows each room 5 free printouts.
The hotel meeting rooms are on the 2nd and 3rd floors. Most of Writercon's events (those scheduled for Fjords and New Sweden) take place on the 2nd floor, with the exception of the workshops in the Bergen room and any events in Hospitality, which is in room 408.
This map of the 2nd floor layout should help orient you to the space. Note that there is a restaurant called D. Brian's (only open weekdays) between our two main areas. It is acceptable to sit in their seating while they are closed, as long as no trash is left behind.
Water will be provided in the meeting rooms throughout the convention. The hotel's policies forbid outside food and beverages in the meeting rooms, to include Fjords, New Sweden, and Bergen.
Elevators from the sleeping rooms do not go to the meeting space on the second floor. It is necessary to disembark on the 3rd floor and then transfer to another elevator or escalator which serves the 2nd floor meeting space. Signs will be posted onsite making this clear.
The airport code for Minneapolis/Saint Paul is "MSP". Flights can arrive in one of two terminals (Lindbergh and Humphrey), both of which are served by the Hiawatha Line light rail train.
The Hiawatha Line light-rail train connects both terminals of the airport with Mall of America (in one direction and downtown Minneapolis (in the other). The light-rail journey in pictures may assist you in finding your way, or you can meet up with airport greeters at the Starbucks in baggage claim for further assistance. The full schedule is available on the Metro Transit website.
When heading to the hotel, disembark at the Nicollet Mall station and go two blocks left to the Mary Tyler Moore statue on 7th and Nicollet. Take a right at the statue, and the hotel is half-way down the block. We are in the Radisson. Do not confuse it with the Marriott across the street.
If you're driving, the self-parking (not valet) in the Plaza VII ramp (entered right before the hotel front entrance on 7th Street) is $18 per day Sun-Thu and $5 per day Fri-Sat. The Sunday daily rate in some area ramps is cheaper, but you'd have to look around. Construction being what it is, it's difficult to advise as to what will be accessible.
Super Shuttle, which costs about $16, is a bad idea if you're under a time crunch to get to the airport. (Getting from the airport to a hotel is slightly less worrisome but still slow.) They pick you up and then drive around to other hotels to get other people, taking much more time than you'd prefer. But if you're willing to spend extra time instead of the extra money for a cab, make sure you pre-reserve online.
There are a dizzying array of taxi companies, some more helpful than others. What I'd recommend doing for a cab is talking to the hotel's front desk and requesting that they have a cab waiting for you at whatever time you'll need it. With no traffic, it's a 15 or 20min drive to the airport. The cab will cost you about $40 before tip. Most cabs want cash; I've seen a few with card-readers, but I wouldn't count on it.