This past weekend was the Fourth Street Fantasy Convention/Conversation, held in the nearby suburb of St. Louis Park. It was, as always, amazing and wonderful. We had additional excitement when a major thunderstorm passed through early Friday evening, leaving the hotel (and over a half-million other homes and business in the Twin Cities) without power. We went on, however, for a full day before power was restored around 7:45 pm on Saturday. People were amazingly helpful and resourceful. Power is still out in a number of homes today (I heard about 42,000 on the radio this morning). I took a walk around Lake Calhoun a while ago, and saw at least a dozen trees down, and the dock on the southeast corner of the lake had been pulled from its mooring (although it's tied up now, it can't be used yet). The convention was invigorating; writers present included Elizabeth Bear, Steven Brust, Scott Lynch, Skyler White, Patricia Wrede, Pamela Dean, Lois McMaster Bujold, Pete Hautman, Ellen Klages; editors included Beth Meacham (Tor) and Lynne Thomas (Apex Magazine). Lots of other writers and readers as well. The panels were great and I learned a lot as always. Got to touch base with some old friends and meet some new ones. Everyone made a special effort to welcome newcomers, of whom there were quite a few. Now it's back to rehearsals for Camino Real, library volunteering, and other fun. Bob and I may take a long weekend to visit my siblings and cousin in Milwaukee sometime this month, and it looks like daughter Jane and her special guy Steven will visit for a week in early August (happily in time for the opening of the Minnesota Fringe Festival).