Arisia wants you to be able to throw an awesome party (actual awe optional). The rules and guidelines below are to outline your rights and responsibilities as a party host, and to reduce the likelihood that the hotel will interfere with your awesomeness.
The Really Big Rules
These are the Arisia 2022 policies about COVID. Since this is an evolving situation, there probably will be changes for Arisia 2023.
All parties must follow these rules. Failure to do so can get you shut down immediately.
- Party hosts and attendees must follow the Code of Conduct and Arisia's COVID policies
- This applies to both Open and Closed parties.
- Additional COVID Policies:
- Open parties in hotel rooms should follow the same rules as Arisia spaces. All party-goers must be vaccinated. Masks must be worn at all times, which means no food and drink outside of the limitations above. We encourage folks to be creative with their planning! For example, beverages in bottles can be consumed in the same way that water bottles can be used, without removing a mask entirely, but only while actively drinking. Food can be provided, but taken to private spaces to eat.
- Closed parties need not follow Arisia rules for mask wearing, but signage must be clearly posted that the party is a closed party, by invitation only, and that Arisia COVID policies do not apply in that space. In general, doors to closed parties should remain closed unless someone is entering or leaving. Those throwing closed parties are responsible for ensuring that their guests are only those who are invited and have consented to being in a space where Arisia COVID policies are not enforced.
- You may not have a cover charge
- You can't sell tickets, nor charge for entry to the party. There also cannot be a "pay to enter" portion of the party. Having a tip or donation jar is fine (but not near the alcohol, if such exists at your party).
- No smoking
- The hotel forbids smoking of any substance except in designated outdoor areas. This includes e-cigarettes, vaping, and similar.
- Flyers must be only on Arisia-approved sign-boards
- This includes the use of "blue tape" and other "safe" hanging methods. This includes in hallways, in elevators, in elevator lobbies, etc.
- Party hosts and attendees must follow the alcohol rules
- See the list of alcohol rules under "Closed Party Rules", below.
A Couple of Definitions
Parties at Arisia are defined as either "open" or "closed". Anyone can show up to an open party (see below); a closed party is by invitation only.
Open Party Rules
- No alcohol.
- All ages.
- You can advertise it in con space.
- Arisia will do its best to advertise it in the con newsletter.
- The door must stay open (i.e. not closed and not locked).
"Anyone can show up" does not mean you have to let everyone in. Your room is your room. You have the right to deny entry to anyone for any reason, but you should have a reason.
Closed Party Rules
- The door must stay closed as much as possible.
- Can be age-limited.
- No advertisements in con space; you can hand invitations to people directly.
- Can serve alcohol, but must follow the rules below.
The Alcohol Rules
- You may not sell alcohol; you may give it away.
- Any party tip or donation jar must be well away from the alcohol.
- You must check ID. The person checking ID must be sober
- Government-issued photo ID, not just Con badge. The legal drinking age in Massachusetts is 21.
- Alcohol cannot leave the party room.
- This includes the doorway, areas outside where IDs and invites may be checked, or areas of the hotel where guests may have moved.
- You may not serve alcohol to anyone who appears drunk
- If in doubt, don't. In Massachusetts, serving alcohol to a person who appears drunk - even at a private event - creates liability you don't want.
Anyone running a party must be a registered member of Arisia. The reason these parties can happen at all is due to Arisia’s relationship with the hotel. Your registration with the convention is what makes you part of that relationship. If you do not have a membership, you can get one online.
Now, The Guidelines
Arisia's guidelines for before, during, and after parties are based on 30+ years of running convention parties. Please follow these guidelines to help us have the best and smoothest parties every year.
Before the party
- Read the Code of Conduct
- Your guests will have read it, and so should you. Make sure you have the contact number for The Watch if you need help. You can get this number in Operations (Ops) if you need it at the con.
- Create buffer rooms
- Putting your friends in adjoining rooms to the party room will help reduce the likelihood of noise complaints. The Arisia Party Team can help with moving around existing room reservations to get that set up.
- Reservation Deadline
- The deadline for applying for a suite or party room is November 13, 2021 (to get your name into the system, you must first make a reservation for a normal hotel room).
- If you need to cancel
- Life happens. Send mail to the Arisia Party Team (firstname.lastname@example.org), and we’ll help unwind things. Keep in mind that there’s a one room-night penalty if you cancel your hotel reservation after December 11, 2021.
- Advertise your party
- We’ll do what we can to get you your party room number as soon as practical, so you can print up posters, cards, etc. Remember that only Open Parties can put up signage in hotel space.
- Make hotel food and drink orders
- In the event that you want to order catering from the hotel, send the Arisia Party Team mail, and we’ll get you introduced to the right people.
- Plan for ice
- We’re pretty sure you’ll need some, and you can either bring in your own or indicate that you'd like ice delivery on the Party Host Form. In general, we’ve found that 30 lbs of ice is a good start.
- Visit nearby supermarkets
- If you need to purchase supplies during the con, there is a Roche Bros supermarket at Downtown Crossing. You can get there by subway, a ~20 minute walk, or by taxi or shared ride service.
- Be discreet when transporting supplies
- You’ll likely be carting all of your party supplies through the hotel lobby. In order to avoid unnecessary attention from all types of people, we recommend covering up party supplies as you move them through the lobby.
- Share these rules with all party hosts
- Please don’t make us explain this one.
During the party
- Control food and drink
- You can serve food and drink only inside the room. Your guests can take it outside the room if they want, except for alcohol which must stay inside the party room. Serving anything at all outside the room is not allowed.
- Use sensible crowd control
- Make sure that you have people on your party staff who can keep people from blocking the hallway outside your room. Overcrowding a party room is also not a great plan nor fun for many guests.
- Be aware of your noise level
- Noise complaints are the top reason that parties get shut down. We'll make every effort to make sure your party is on a floor where there are other parties, but the bottom line is that your party is happening in a hotel, and people tend to sleep in hotels.
After the party
- Clean the hallway outside the party room
- Pick up the random trash that will inevitably end up on the floor while people are going in and out. We strongly recommend you clean as you go. It makes the next morning much more pleasant. Trust us on this one.
- Tip the housekeeping staff
- A good guideline is at least $20/night per party room. Housekeeping staff are responsible for making sure that your room looks like no one was ever there, and nothing happened. Do the right thing.
Thank you for reading through these rules and guidelines. We look forward to helping you have the best possible party at Arisia. If you have any questions that aren't answered here please email them to @email.