May 24-27, 2002
Presented by the Baltimore Science Fiction Society, Balticon celebrated its 36th year Memorial Day weekend in Baltimore’s Inner Harbor. Balticon is truly an “elder statesman” of the East Coast Con scene. When Cons can claim to be older than their average guest, you can bet your last drachma that the list of rules for that Con is longer than the autograph line for Phil Foglio. The rule that seemed to most impact Balticon festivities was the enforcement of “no alcohol on site.” Not that the staff of Nth Degree requires a drink in every hand and a bottle on ice but, well, we enjoy hosting social events and inviting our readers to come by for a “sip or two.” Rather than alcohol, we decided to abuse another compound element—HE2. We held our first Heliympics and, quite honestly, we believe it will be our last. We’re still woozy. That said, Balticon has a loyal and significant following. Other, newer Cons have much to learn from the organizers of Balticon. Sometimes rules help keep a reputation intact. Balticon 37 will be held May 23-26, 2003.