Monday, May 2, 2011

Spring Weekend 2011 Part 4: The Comission

When a Knight's Weekend is over, everyone remembers the sessions they had and nobody remembers the people who made it all possible.  Still, when I look back on these, when I talk about them, I try to keep them in mind.

The commission has little control over the actual content of the sessions and this one, in particular, struggled to get enough GMs (one of the members of the commission had to buckle down and run a game).  Even so, they do control who ends up in one game, and that can matter a great deal. I heard no complaints about the games people ended up in.  Instead, everyone seemed satisfied, which means the commission did a great job with matchmaking.  Likewise, the LARP was well organized, with food available and scenery appropriately set.

Beyond the actual session, you need food and lodgings.  We stayed at the same place we've been the previous two times, so everyone already knew what to do and where to go, so that was an easy choice for the commission (And the sessions, in particular, didn't really interfere with one another as they had in previous weekends, which is good).  The food, in particular, was quite good.  Friday's dinner was kind of lame, but Saturday's dinner was delicious enough that I wouldn't mind having the recipe.  Xavier really knows his way around a kitchen, and I was pleased that they put me on cooking duty (in fact, most of the people who ended up cooking duty were people who actually loved cooking which is, once again, a sign for their eye to detail).

The organization was solid.  Erik sent out helpful suggestions and checklists for things to bring which certainly helped me, and while Xavier got lost in the way there, this was my first time riding my bike to a weekend and I thought it went well overall (well, at least on the way back).  The times for everything was clearly posted, as well as the locations for where people were gaming.  In fact, Marco wanted to ensure that he and I were running our games in the same room, since both of us were using the battlemaps and needed to share pens, and there was no struggle, no kerfuffle about changing who was where.

This list probably sounds unimpressive.  "Yeah, so, they didn't screw up."  But really, putting a weekend together is harder than it sounds, and "not screwing up" is a sign of excellence.  In particular, their skill was invisible and seamless.  People never stopped and marveled at the fact that there was enough food for everyone and that it tasted good, or that the sessions went off without a hitch and that there was something to do at all times as well as some free time for people to work on sessions and relax and just chat.  You couldn't see the work they did because they kept it behind the scenes and kept it out of the way of the players.  That right there is the sign of masterful organization, where you put something together so well that it seems perfectly natural that it goes without a hitch.

We haven't had two successful weekends in a year in a very long time.  And not only did both weekends go off with minimum problems, but they were both highly memorable, at least in my opinion.  Well done, guys.
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