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Denver 2004 SVP remembrances
In no particular order of impact or importance...
A recorded fire alarm announcement kept going off during Greg Erickson's
talk (and someone else's--I don't remember whose). No one left, but it was
disconcerting to the speakers and the audience to have this broadcast over and
Ken Dial and a certain tyrant dinosaur worker shared the honor of having two
moderators standing behind them at the end of their talks, threatening a
virtual hook off the podium.
The auction raised $17,700, with generous bids not only on the signed
Dinosauria II and the men of SVP calendar but on an inflatable stegosaur, a
Archaeopteryx plaque, various casts of teeth, prints and other treasures.
The superhero theme was fun; the Batman logo and music gave a dramatic start
the program. Brent and Ralph and the others did a fine job of upping the
bidding and keeping the energy going. One thing that gave me an uncomfortable
feeling was the auctioning of the scientific illustration services of a young
lady, when one of the "bad guy characters" stood on the stage with her,
holding her arms behind her back.
Bill Stout was working on his sketch book during the proceedings, and it was
interesting to get a preview of those drawings. The dinosaur art show at
the museum was hard to find--logically placed in "Botswanaland." The signing
could have been much better, since the art was displayed in two rooms and I
only saw one, not knowing that there was another room to see. In other art
news, Gary Staab won a Lanzendorf Award for his model of an unnamed pterosaur.
A big thank you to Ken Carpenter and the host committee for the food at the
museum and the banquet. Delicious food and lots of it in various locations
during the welcome reception put everyone in a good mood. Similarly, for once
the banquet food was edible and not quivering.
The hotel setup for talks was extremely convenient, with a short elevator
ride down to the meeting rooms. The pedestrian mall outside the hotel gave us
easy access to new places to eat and shop, via free rides on the buses that
stopped at just about every corner. The weather in Denver was mild, and there
were only traces of snow on the ground on Tuesday.
The new president of SVP is Annalisa Berta, Professor and Associate Chair,
Department of Biology, at San Diego State University. Dr. Berta replaces Hans
Dieter Sues, who completed his term as president. I heard that 1100 people
attended the meeting this year, which will be held in Mesa next year and then