Written by guest blogger and GeekGirlCon Social Media Manager Kristine Hassell
When you think about the Girl Scouts, what immediately pops into your head? Let’s be honest… you think cookies, right? I mean, who doesn’t love those decadent Samoas or addictive Thin Mints?
Image source: Daniel Kissinger
Hopefully when the Girl Scouts come to mind, you also think about their long tradition of confidence building and their efforts to help girls make the world into a better place. So an alliance between the Girl Scouts and GeekGirlCon makes total sense, right? That’s what we thought too. The Girl Scouts of Western Washington participated in previous GeekGirlCon conventions, both in our Exhibitor Hall and in the GeekGirlConnections room. Building on that, some smart folks had another idea…
Back in November of 2014, our Gaming Events Coordinator, Andy Munich, was invited to represent GeekGirlCon in a 24-hour D&D marathon hosted by Dungeons & Dragons publisher Wizards of the Coast (WotC) to benefit Extra Life. During his eight-hour gaming stint, he struck up a conversation with Tammie Treibley Thompson, wife of WotC Senior Game Designer Rodney Thompson. During their conversation, Andy learned that Tammie was a troop leader and as they continued to talk, they quickly realized that there was some synchronicity in their ideas–and the GeekGirlScouts were born!
What is the Gauntlet? It’s a 10-hour competition among teams of 4 people each, and they play tabletop games from start to finish for the honor of hoisting the Gauntlet in victory! Part of each team’s strategy involves their fundraising amounts, and bonuses for gameplay called “powerups”. Think of these as cheats or special abilities that they get to use throughout the various games to help boost their chance at winning. Powerups are based on each team’s fundraising and are earned: one at $500, one at $1000, one at $1500, one at $2500, and then one every $2500 after that. As of April 21, Team GeekGirlCon has just one powerup, but we know more are coming!
2014 Team GeekGirlCon: Kristine Hassell, Jex Ballard, Cynthia Rogers, Rose Minier Image source: Jex Ballard
The 20 participating teams are raising money for Hopelink, a community action agency that has served homeless and low income families, children, seniors, and people with disabilities since 1971. Hopelink has food banks, support services, family development, adult education, and employment training among their many amazing programs. They serve more than 60,000 people in King County every year.
ENGAGE, the charitable giving program within Card Kingdom and Mox Boarding House, is running this contest for the second time, and this year they have doubled their space–allowing for 10 more teams to compete. GeekGirlCon is competing for the second time, with staffers Kristine Hassell, Jex Ballard, Sylvia Monreal, and Rose Minier stepping up to take the challenge.
Newest team member Sylvia is excited to participate in her first Gauntlet this year. “In a big city like Seattle, it’s important for us to look after our neighbors whenever we can. I’m grateful that The Gauntlet will give me a way to use my hobbies in the service of others. It’s just a wonderful opportunity to showcase a positive, fun side of nerd culture – let’s use our powers for good!”
Exactly how will the money GeekGirlCon is raising for the Gauntlet be used by Hopelink? Here’s an example of what the dollars raised can do for needy people in King County:
$25 provides weekend food for FIVE school-aged children
$50 provides formula for a newborn child for a month
$100 provides hygiene products for FOUR people
$150 provides FIFTY meals for a family of FOUR
$250 provides financial education classes for a parent
Second-year teammate Jex had this to say about playing for the Gauntlet: “I’ve been involved in GeekGirlCon for 5 years now, and one of my absolute favorite memories was playing on Team GeekGirlCon in the first ever Gauntlet last year. I was shocked when our team was able to rise as the underdogs to take home 4th place! This year, I’m revved and ready to compete again at Moxtropolis! More importantly, I’m ready to hit the streets and raise some money for Hopelink! We’ve already surpassed the amount we earned last year, and I’m interested to see what kind of funds Team GeekGirlCon can bring in for this awesome cause.”
How can you contribute to GeekGirlCon’s Gauntlet team to help them earn more valuable powerups to aid them on game day? You can go to their team page on the Gauntlet website and donate any amount you want to–anonymously or not is completely up to you. To date, Kristine, Jex, Sylvia, and Rose have raised $730, which is 43% of the $1700 they’ve set as their goal! There are 24 days remaining for them to reach that goal and gain more powerups, and with the help of our strong, generous GeekGirlCon community, we KNOW they can do it.
There will also be spectator space available for the competition at Mox Boarding House in Bellevue; stop by for an hour, or stay from start to finish to support GeekGirlCon and the other teams competing for the Gauntlet! Go to the Gauntlet’s homepage for more information. We can’t wait to see you there!
Written by GeekGirlCon Copywriter Sarah “SG-1” Grant
Batman from Seattle Pride '11. Photo by Erica McGillivray
GeekGirlCon is excited be walking in the Seattle Pride Parade on Sunday June 24th to show our support for the LGBTQ community. From staffers and volunteers to supporters and fans, the LGBTQ community has been part of GeekGirlCon from the start, and it is time for us to show how much we care.
Our signature GeekGirlCon color might be yellow, but our true colors are full-spectrum rainbow. A founding tenet of GeekGirlCon is acceptance and inclusion no matter who you are, and that includes all genders and orientations of self-identified geeks. GeekGirlCon strives to create and inclusive and safe organization and geek-focused events and con. We fully support Seattle Out and Proud’s mission to “Create Unity, Honor Diversity, and Achieve Equal Human Rights throughout our Region and the World.” Because, sometimes it’s not just about the geeks.
Watch for us! We’ll be in geeky cosplay or in GeekGirlCon logo garb and handing out information about GeekGirlCon ’12 as well as some goodies. The parade begins at 11:00 a.m. in downtown Seattle at 4th and Union Streets and concludes at 2nd and Denny. Visit SeattlePride.org for complete details.
**Update: This screening is now SOLD OUT. Advance tickets are no longer available, a limited number of “standby” tickets might become available at the door five to ten minutes prior to the screening. Standby tickets are sold on a first-come, first-served basis, depending on how many seats are available. Cash only.**
Miss Representation – Presented by Women’s Funding Alliance in partnership with Reel Grrls, GeekGirlCon, and SIFF. Join us on November 30th for a special screening of this compelling new film that exposes how mainstream media contribute to the under-representation of women in positions of power and influence in America.
This 90-minute documentary identifies huge gaps in the mainstream media’s portrayals and depictions of women and how the limited images actually lead to fewer women in positions of influence and power in our society. Miss Representation is essential viewing for anyone bombarded with images and memes from mainstream media (ergo, that means everyone needs see this documentary).
Visit MissRepresentation.org and take the pledge to help end sexism. Then, make sure you secure your tickets for the screening:
Wednesday, November 30th
Doors open at 6:00PM, show at 7:00 PM
Uptown Theater (Lower Queen Anne neighborhood, 511 Queen Ann Ave. N) Click here to buy tickets: $10, $5 for SIFF members
All ages are welcome to this event, but please consider this film is rated TV-14 DL for strong suggestive dialogue and strong coarse language. Visit MissRepresentation.org for more details.
Stay after the film for a panel discussion on the images of women in the media: how it currently stands and how to change it. Panelists include:
Whether a veteran activist or young upstart, this screening of Miss Representation offers everyone inspiration to become an agent of change for images of women in the media. It is time to stand up and represent! Continue the discussion at www.geekgirlcon.com/forum
Forecasters say that, August 28th, the last Sunday of the month is expected to be a lovely day. And on this lovely Seattle day, GeekGirlCon staff and volunteers are needed to help restore green lands in Lewis Park on Beacon Hill. Any and all fans and supporters of GeekGirlCon, or nature, are welcome to attend. This is a chance to get outdoors, weed, mulch, smell the fresh air, and help clean up a park that has some amazing views! If you are under 18, please complete the online Youth Waiver form and bring it on the day of the event. Be sure to join this event on the Lewis Park Natural Area website.
Restoration of neighborhood green spaces is important to recreate the native plant and tree communities lost to logging, clearing, and take-over by invasive plants like ivy and blackberry. Native plant communities free of invasive species can survive drought and live longer, healthier lives to keep Seattle green.
Lewis Park Natural Area is part of the Green Seattle Partnership, a public/private partnership between the City of Seattle and the Cascade Land Conservancy. This partnership envisions a healthy, livable city with sustainable forested parklands. Over the years, countless volunteers have planted native species to restore the park, including Western red-cedar trees that could live 800 to 1000 years!
See you Sunday, August 28th!
Thank you kindly,
GeekGirlCon Community Outreach Coordinator
What is it like being a professional woman working in the gaming industry? Totally cool is what. Hear what these gamer industry pros have to say about getting a start and gaining a career in gaming.
Join GeekGirlCon and the Association for Women in Computing on Thursday, August 11th at 7 p.m. at ArenaNet (3180 139th Ave SE (5th floor), Bellevue, WA 98005) for a FREE panel discussion and Q & A about women working in the game industry.
Space is limited. Reserve your place today and get a ticket.
If you have any questions about this event please email firstname.lastname@example.org
On Sunday June 5, GeekGirlCon is walking with IGNITE to raise awareness of women working in science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) and reverse the stereotype of technology as a competitive, solitary, masculine career choice which is keeping girls away from STEM.
Our Geek Girl network has been shrinking when it comes to women seeking careers in STEM! According to IGNITE, an organization focused inspiring young women to pursue the science and tech fields, women represent only 15% of the industry today. That is a big decrease from the 1980 when women were 35% of those fields. GeekGirlCon wants to reverse this trend and you can help us.
Register to walk with us on June 5 or sponsor our staff and volunteers who will lace up their trainers and don warm-ups for a cause we vehemently support. Visit IGNITE for more information and donate. Support GeekGirlCon walkers: Arwen Morton, Amanda McGall, Kelly Clark, Jen Stuller, Anna Daniell, Erica McGillivray, and Adrienne Fox. Please feel free to join us at the registration table at 1pm.
IGNITE states, “When you join this Walk, you are taking a stand for a brighter future, where women participate equally with men and have a say in how technology can improve the lives of people everywhere around the globe.” GeekGirlCon totally agrees.
Gather your geekiest friends around and put your thinking caps on! GeekGirlCon invites you to a geeky trivia competition.
Hosted by Geeks Who Drink, the most knowledgeable geeks in Washington will go head to head in this trivia night at Dad Watson’s for fame, fortune, and ultimate geek bragging rights!
When: 8:00pm Monday, April 11th Where: Dad Watson’s, 3601 Fremont Ave. N., Seattle, WA 98103
Teams up to six players. Entry fee is $5 per person. Compete to win 30% of the total entry fees and GeekGirlCon button packs.
During our friendly competition, we will also be collecting canned food to donate to the Ballard Food Bank. You can get in your good deed of the day and compete for glory and riches – all in one place!
See you there!
Special Events/Community Outreach
Monday, March 21st at 7:30pm to 9pm
200 Roy Street
Seattle, WA 98109
GeekGirlCon proudly presents a celebration of women with a night of geeky Burlesque dancing and jazz. Featuring Miss Elaine Yes, Laela Lovechild and more to thrill and entertain you. Live music provided by the Ron Weinstein Trio.
GeekGirlCon extols female involvement in all fields of Geek culture. The underpinning of this is having women proudly own themselves and what they love. Burlesque is exactly that. It is playful, sexy and above all, it is empowering.
Don’t forget this is the perfect opportunity to bring an unwrapped, new toy or other geeky gift to help GeekGirlCon donate a TARDIS full of toys to Seattle Children’s Hospital.
Happy Hour will be happening all night!
See you there,
Special Events/Community Outreach