A regional convention usually held in Boston, Massachusetts, named for the anti-Civilization culture of E. E. Smith’s Lensmen saga. It has also been held in Springfield, Framingham, and other locations within the state. Run by NESFA, it grew so much in the 1980s it came to be called the "Winter Worldcon", then it imploded. (See Rise and Fall of the Giant Boskones.)
There were actually two Boston conventions named "Boskone". The first, run by The Stranger Club ran 1941-1945. The current series of Boskones was started in 1965 by the Boston Science Fiction Society (BoSFS) as part of its bidding strategy for Boston in '67. BoSFS ran Boskone 1, Boskone 2, and Boskone 4. Boskone 3 was actually run by Erwin S. Strauss but, because of its venue, it was officially sponsored by the Massachusetts Institute of Technology Science Fiction Club (MITSFS). The New England Science Fiction Association (NESFA) has run all Boskones starting with Boskone 5.
Along with its gohs, Boskone usually features a Special Guest, a Hal Clement Science Speaker, a NESFA Press Guest and a Featured Filker. It never has a Fan Goh. Fie!
Official Artist is the title Boskone gives to its Art GoH. It originated in a theory that there was but a single GoH at Boskone and the artist being honored was in some sense a functionary of the convention, doing its official art. This theory seems never to have been real and Official Artists should always be considered to have been Guests of Honor.
|From Fancyclopedia 1, ca. 1944|
|(Smith) - Originally, the anti-Civilization culture of the Lensman stories, which the Michelists insisted was superior to Smith's future capitalistic society -- hence the expression "Wollheim, speaking for Boskone". The word now means Boston Conference, the anniversary meetings of the Stranger Club, Boskone I being in 1941.|
With a convention in the snowiest time of a New England winter, Boskone committees traditionally fret over the possibility of a major blizzard closing Boskone down. While there have been some close calls, none has -- so far -- succeeded.
|Boskone 15||February 6-7, 1978||This was one of the worst blizzards in Boston history, closing the whole eastern part of the state for most of a week. Luckily for Boskone, restrictions were lifted before the convention began.|
|Boskone 33||February 16 and 18, 1996||Heavy snowfalls on both Friday and Sunday|
|Boskone 37||February 18, 2000||8" of snow on Friday|
|Boskone 40||February 16-17, 2003||There was 27" of snow starting late Sunday and continuing all Monday. Around fifty out-of-town members were stranded at the hotel and held their own convention, Snokone.|
Starting in the earliest years, NESFA sold life memberships in Boskone to raise capital to publish anticipated NESFA Indexes, though as it turned out, that project went into a hiatus soon after.
A Life Membership is not transferable or refundable and entitles the Life Member to an automatic membership in all future Boskones. Additionally, NESFA gives a Life Membership to each of its Boskone Guests of Honor. At present, about 120 Life Memberships have been purchased.
The rate has varied over the years:.
Boskone 1-14: Life Memberships unavailable Boskone 15-16: 10 x current prereg rate Boskone 17-19: unavailable Boskone 20-24: 20 x current prereg rate Boskone 25-present: 14 x lowest prereg rate
- = Died before the convention.
|This is a convention page. Please extend it by adding information about the convention, including dates, GoHs, convention chairman, locale, sponsoring organization, external links to convention pages, awards given, the program, notable events, anecdotes, pictures, scans of publications, pictures of T-shirts, con reports, etc.|