CAN-CON History


CAN•CON, or more completely CAN•CON: The Conference on Canadian Content in Speculative Arts and Literature, is a periodic science fiction and fantasy convention in Ottawa put on by The Society for Canadian Content in Speculative Arts and Literature.

In 1991, James Botte and Farrell McGovern founded CAN•CON in response to a perception that there were no dedicated public venues that featured primarily Canadian speculative fiction writers, editors, and artists.

In addition to the focus on Canadian content, it was also an attempt to bring a focus on the book back to Ottawa science fiction and fantasy events.

CAN•CON ran from 1992 through 1997, again in 2001, and was relaunched in 2010 after a long hiatus. It has had some of the most diverse programming SF conventions have ever had, while retaining a focus on Canada, its writing environment, and uniqueness. Its current chairs are Derek Künsken (co-chair programming) and Marie Bilodeau (co-chair corporate), two published SF writers from the Ottawa region.

CAN•CON has hosted events such as book launches, Canvention with its Aurora Awards, the Boréal Congress, a private label CAN•CON Wine, Virtual Reality gaming, and Co-Hosting the launch with the National Library of Canada of their exhibition “Visions of Other Worlds”, Hosting Canada Post’s Canadian Superhero Stamp Series Unveiling, to name a few of the notable events.

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