Thursday, March 26, 2009

Redoubt rumbles, J Week adjusts

The persistent burping from Mt. Redoubt Thursday has forced some adjustments in this weekend's Alaska Press Club J Week Conference. Several presenters traveling from Outside already were bumped off cancelled flights due to the volcano. We hang in the balance to see how atmospheric conditions unfold for Friday's travelers, and we'll keep you posted here and on the APC Web site.

So far, unable to attend:
Deborah Potter of NewsLab, William Drummond of NPR, and Lisa Margonelli, author of "Oil on the Brain," will not make it to the conference.

Waiting to hear on:
David Cohn, keynote speaker, is scheduled to travel Friday. So are Gregg and Judy Erickson, coming up from Juneau. We'll keep you posted on the status of their arrival.

In the meantime, tonight's opening reception (6-9:30 p.m.) and panel on blogging (7 p.m.) goes forward at the Senior Center.

Other highlights include the Saturday lunch with Anne Kilkenny, the Wasilla resident given special recognition by the Alaska Press Club board for an e-mail on Republican VP candidate Sarah Palin; Friday night pizza and a panel discussion on the Exxon Valdez (5:15-7:15 p.m.) and the party later at the Anchorage Press (7-9 p.m.); an audio slideshow workshop by Eric Hill of the Anchorage Daily News on Friday afternoon (2:30-3:45 p.m.), as well as a panel of Alaska photographers discussing how they do their job in bitter cold (Friday lunch).

You get the picture, there's still lots to do. Plus, given the fragile state of our journalistic institutions, it's a great time to come together and swap ideas and strategies for our future. If you've got some, please share!

Due to these developments, conference organizers decided Thursday afternoon to open the doors to all remaining conference workshops and panels. Press Club members enter free, after typically re-upping their membership when they submit their work to the club's annual journalism competition. Journalists and visitors not covered by this circumstance typically pay $30 a day to attend workshops. Not this year.

The banquet will still require tickets, which are $30 when ordered by noon Saturday, or $35 at the door of the banquet.

That's it for now, but updates will be posted here and at the blog as ash, ahem, settles.

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