Introducing Camp Autostraddle

click for more on a-camp

In July 2010, I woke up at 3am and wrote “CAMP – THIS WILL BE OUR THING” on a notepad I keep by my bed for nocturnal moments of genius. I can’t remember precisely what thoughts I was thinking before I thought the thought about camp, but I remember all the thoughts we’ve had since as the project has expanded and become a team effort.

 ++

What Would Autostraddle Look Like in 3-D?

Here’s the idea: a few hundred of you, 20 of us, and a beautiful group retreat site in the mountains. We’ve cherry picked the things we like about other queer women’s events and vacations — hilarious comedy, diverse panels, the occasional dance party and the chance to revel in one another’s awesomeness — added heaps of our own original ideas, and found a way to serve it to you for a fraction of what those other events cost.

It’s an opportunity for you to discover new things about yourself, enhance your relationships within the international queer community, make new friends forever, support Autostraddle, and, you know — get away from your laptop for three days!

+

A-Camp: A Place Where You Can Be Yourself

We feel like there’s a void out there for awesome queer women who desperately wanna meet each other and experience the magic of communing with like minds, but aren’t into beer-soaked pool parties and can’t swing cruises to the Bahamas. Our original idea was to hold Camp a few times a year, for 4-7 days each time, in different locations, but that seemed like a huge thing to dive into, thus . . .

The First Ever A-Camp Weekend was born!! It’s a pilot run that gives all of us a chance to determine the website’s future!

+

Details:

When: Thursday April 26th – Sunday April 29th, 2012

Where: Alpine Meadows Retreat Center in Angelus Oaks, California. It’s 1.5 hours from Palm Springs, 2 hours from Los Angeles, 2.5 hours from San Diego, 4 hours from Las Vegas, 5 hours from Phoenix and 8 hours from San Francisco. We’ll be running shuttles from LAX to the campsite all day on April 26th and shuttles back to LAX on April 29th.

Lodging: You’ll be having the bestest biggest surprise slumber party of your life in fully insulated, carpeted & heated cabins with private bathroom/showers/baths and generously-sized bunk beds.

Just $50 down reserves your spot!

Cost: $300

Your Cost Includes:

* 3 nights lodging
* 3 meals a day and snacks (with vegan, vegetarian, gluten-free and kosher options)
* Full access to a variety of daytime programming situations, including typical camp stuff like crafts and sports as well as workshops and panels with AS Teamasters
* World-Class Night-time Entertainment: The entire event will be MC’ed by world’s funniest duo, Julie Goldman and Brandy Howard
* Gift bag with exclusive Camp-Only Autostraddle T-shirt you can sell on ebay in ~4 years

Also:

* Memories that will last a lifetime, probably longer
* Staff dedicated to all of your feelings or lack thereof
Be an active part of the group that determines the future of A-Camp

Who: You guys! You guys are really gonna like each other! All ages welcome/encouraged! ALSO:

Also — Camp TeaMasters will be Robin & Marni/bcw, and your “counselors” and workshop leaders presently include, confirmed: comediennes/actresses/writers Julie Goldman & Brandy Howard, actress/singer Haviland Stillwell, actress/producer Sarah Croce, actress/writer Ashley Reed, Internet Superstar Chef Hannah Hart of My Drunk Kitchen, Stylist Sara Medd, DJ/filmmaker Carlytron, Fashion Icon Fitforafemme and world famous photographer Robin Roemer as well as Riese, Laneia, Crystal, Annika, Taylor, Katrina, Emily, Whitney, Intern Hot Laura, Alex, Lizz, Brittani, Bren, Gabby, Jess S., Intern Grace, Carmen, Kelsey and Stef.

In addition to having life-changing conversations around a campfire with some of the coolest girls you’ll ever meet, you’ll have tons of activities, workshops, groups and panel discussions to choose from every day.

We’re here, you’re queer, it’s family.

We’ll roll out information and take requests regarding programming over the next several weeks, but rest assured there will be so many fun things to do if you wanna do stuff, like:

 Lesbian Feminist Jeopardy

Writing workshops with Rachel & Riese

Basketball! Hiking! Arts & Crafts! Cooking! Yoga! Speed-Dating!

Photography with Robin

High Ropes Course, Climbing Tower and Zip Line

Unicorn Plan-It Hollywood Show

Queer Women of Color Panel

 Formspring LIVE! with Riese, Laneia, Rachel, Crystal, Taylor, Lizz and Alex

The diversity in our programming will reflect the diversity of our content — shit that makes you laugh, shit that makes you think, and shit that makes you wanna change the world.

YES I’M IN. WHAT DO I DO?

1. Put down a $50 deposit and/or put down the entire $300 to secure your spot ASAP. There’s limited space, and we expect this’ll fill up quickly. Deposits are non-refundable, but they are transferrable. (This also makes a great last minute Valentine’s Day present!)

2. You’ll provide us with some basic information while making your deposit or payment this week. In two weeks, you’ll be asked for a lot more information about things like your t-shirt size, flight times and bunking needs/concerns/requests (cabins sleep between 6 and 20 people). Then all kinds of updates will keep happening until you arrive!

3. Start making travel arrangements!

If you’re flying, we recommend flying into LAX, because we will be running shuttles from there, but arrangements could also be made from the Palm Springs or Ontario airport, depending on demand. We will request flight information from you before camp begins.

If you are flying and will need transportation, please  fly in on Thursday April 26th before 6pm and book your return flight for Sunday, April 29th (we recommend flying out after noon, but can make other arrangements if necessary)

If you’re driving, then sweet! If you’re looking to carpool or caravan, you can coordinate with other campers via the ASS Camp group or Facebook Page (both will go up this week.)

4. You’ll also have access to the event website after making your payment, and can enjoy updates there.

FAQ:

Q: But I’m really socially awkward! What if I go there alone and don’t make any friends?!
A: Oh girl, we ALL feel you, which’s why we’re committed to 100% social comfort. I can tell you who doesn’t make that claim and her name is Dinah Shore. Firstly, Autostraddlers are the most amazing, kind, inclusive people in the world and Secondly, we’ll be prepared for Shystraddlers and the team will be prepped on how to ensure nobody will feel weird or awkward at camp. This is our top priority. You have my promise and honestly I rarely promise things. We got this shit on eight kinds of lock.

Q: I’m really super poor but I want to go so bad!
A: Firstly, this is a once-in-a-lifetime Utopia-esque situation, I recommend getting your emergency funds out. But we get that hard times are here for some of you, and that’s why we’ve set up a “pay it later” system. Let us know when you put down your deposit that you’ll need to pay via installment plan. No fees, no gimmicks, no credit checks. We’ll work with you to get you there. That’s just how much we want you to come.

Q: Is there Wi-Fi?
A: NOPE! I know it’s scary!

Q: Will there be any free time?
A: Yup! I mean you don’t have to do anything you don’t want to do. Go read by the river or go videotape your friend hiding in a tree like a monkey or just lie on the grass or in your bed. You can do whatever you wanna do, you’re a grown-up!

Q: Are there extra charges for any activities?
A: Yes, there is a $15 fee for those requiring transportation to/from LAX, $20 fee for the Ropes Course or Climbing Tower, $25 for a private voice lesson with Haviland and $10 for a private writing tutorial with Riese.

Q: Do you need any more speakers/activity leaders?
A: If you’re either famous, internet-famous or have a strong background in queer activism/social justice issues and experience talking to groups about that, we could use some more of both of those kinds of people. Hit us up – robin [at] autostraddle [dot] com & autostraddle.merch [at] gmail [dot] com.

Q: Me and all my friends want to go together, can we stay in the same cabin?
A: Yes.

Q: I got so inspired by your State of the Union yesterday that I donated my last 50 bucks!
A: Shoot us an email and we’ll work out a transfer.

+

You guys, this is the closest thing you’ll ever get to magic.

Register Now. You Don’t Wanna Miss This.


Before you go! Autostraddle runs on the reader support of our A+ Members. If this article meant something to you today — if it informed you or made you smile or feel seen, will you consider joining A+ and supporting the people who make this indie queer media site possible?

Join A+!

Riese

Riese is the 41-year-old Co-Founder of Autostraddle.com as well as an award-winning writer, video-maker, LGBTQ+ Marketing consultant and aspiring cyber-performance artist who grew up in Michigan, lost her mind in New York and now lives in Los Angeles. Her work has appeared in nine books, magazines including Marie Claire and Curve, and all over the web including Nylon, Queerty, Nerve, Bitch, Emily Books and Jezebel. She had a very popular personal blog once upon a time, and then she recapped The L Word, and then she had the idea to make this place, and now here we all are! In 2016, she was nominated for a GLAAD Award for Outstanding Digital Journalism. She's Jewish and has a cute dog named Carol. Follow her on twitter and instagram.

Riese has written 3116 articles for us.

780 Comments

    • Same here… Montréal-LAX for 2, plus babysitter for the kids, plus we fees = impossible to gather up. :-( Too bad, we would have loved it, but I’m still glad some of you will have so many nice stories to tell us when they get back. :-)

      • I’m thinking about the idea of an Autostraddle Traveling Pants Circus for the future.. we’ll see. I’ll have to run it by Riese.

  1. oh my god. oh my god.
    you know what. I so hope this is going to be the biggest success of forever so that there can be a camp no. 2.
    I mean. I would come from Germany if my final exams wouldn’t start around may 3rd. it’s breaking my heart a little bit. because from june to whenever, I have all the time in the world cause I’ll be unemployed and travelling around.

    also, I’d really like to thank Gabby in person for her sweet words after my grandma died. really.

  2. Um… I’ve been looking into going back to Cali in April as a mean to get away from here, this might just be the winner for me.

  3. Okay. Here’s the plan: I’m a finalist for National Merit, which would give me a $2500 scholarship. This only costs 300 + a plane ticket. So, my parents (who are paying for my college, bless their hearts) still come out on top?

  4. Brava for some originality, Autostraddle!

    It warms my soul to know that you ladies are attempting something of this magnitude, ESPECIALLY an event that is so reasonable priced. If I wasn’t deep in the heart of Indiana, I would put down $100 today and sign my girlfriend and I up for this magnificent event. And a million thank yous for actually addressing the notion that some ladies are just a little shy at first and take some time and energy to open them up. You’re on the right track, babies. (Err…that babies part sounded weird, didn’t it? Sh*t).

      • If it wasn’t right before my written exams (PhD program) I would also road trip with you guys from Indiana.

        HEY WHO IS FROM INDIANA WE SHOULD BE FRIENDS I GO TO NOTRE DAME

        • HEY I DON’T GO TO NOTRE DAME BUT I LIVE RRRREAL CLOSE AND WORK EVEN CLOSER WHERE HAVE YOU BEEN ALL MY LIFE.

          What’s the lesbo population of ND like? I heard it’s the sixth most gay unfriendly university in the US. So maybe that means you’re making a positive impact on the school. Or maybe it’s just really difficult to attend. What’s it like for you?

  5. I have attempted to write out this comment about a dozen times and I’m so excited I can’t really pick out a clear thought except, “Welp, I know what I’m doing when I get paid tomorrow.”

  6. Alright, as soon as my paycheck clears I’m reserving a spot. I want to reserve one for my boyfriend too. Is this a safe space for trans men, or is this a camp just for queer female-identified folks?

  7. At some point in my life, I might live in America. Until then, this is the sort of thing I will dream about in my little pansexual heart. Everyone who goes has to have a magically fun time on my behalf NOT LIKE YOU WOULDN’T ALREADY THOUGH

  8. Blargh, despite being a continent and a lot of money away, this is alarmingly tempting.

    Can I make an advance request that while you are all in the woods, you enable image posting on here so those left behind can amuse themselves by posting a million animated gifs and take the whole site down? It will be theraputic for us.

  9. Varsity Barbecue Team did it first. Probably not this well though. We did not tolerate vegetarians though so I guess we had that going for us

  10. I am really excited it’s called CAMP because I feel like I am going to attend Childish Gambino’s album in real life except with hot women and not as sad.

  11. Whyyyyyyy do all the nice things happen on the other side of the planet? Alternatively, I hope this speeds up you plans for world domination so we can have Camp Autostralia next.

      • I would come too! I could probably even convince the wife. What can we do to make this happen? <- dead serious

          • I also am dead serious. But event planning isn’t my strong point. Anyone have any ideas??

            We could try for some lower key meetups first and then see if there is momentum for a bigger thing…

          • Yeah, if planning my wedding was any indication I am not the best event planner ever.

            BUT SURELY WE COULD HIRE ONE RIGHT

            Blue Mountains or Hunter Valley come to mind as obvious options. (Latter comes with BONUS WINE)

          • Sounds good you guys! I feel like there is plenty of cabin-style accommodation out there that could be hired at affordable prices.

            Robin below made a good point that AS saved a lot of money by making a reservation just outside peak season, this might also be something for us to consider.

            If Dee-Anne Smith will still be in Australia we should totally see if she would do a performance for us.

      • oh man, i kind of wanna smack all of you who are like ‘oh no! i’m in [insert US state here] it’s too farrrrrr’ WHAT ARE YOU SERIOUS this is CAMP AUTOSTRADDLE! you’re in the correct nation! you’re on the correct side of the world! go do that effin’ thing!
        intense frustration at living on the asshole of the world is makin’ me a bit crazy. i’m sorry. BUT SERIOUSLY.

  12. This sounds fantastic.
    What is the lodging situation like? How many people per cabin? And will these be shared with strangers?

    • cabins can sleep between 6 and 20 people, depending on the cabin. it’s a site used for corporate retreats and so forth, so it’s nice (we’re secretly way too high-maintenance to actually camp, so).

      we’ll be asking you all kinds of fun questions and taking requests and fielding concerns regarding your sleeping arrangements prior to arrival. I understand many of you will have special needs in this regard so we’ll be doing all we can to ensure y’all feel comfortable and safe.

      if you travel with somebody/ies you’d like to lodge with, then let us know and we’ll make it happen. but yes, you probably will be sharing with strangers WHICH IS PART OF THE FUN!!!! seriously it is! after filling all requests, tentatively we’ll be grouping cabins by age, i think? but like everything here, we’re listening to you!

    • the 14 hour flight and airfare will be totally worth it.

      i really want another Australian to go, partly so i won’t have to suffer through jetlag alone.

      • hey Crystal, how much do you think flights (departing Sydney) would be?

        I have some friends I’ve been wanting to visit in California and some time to spare. It’s feeling like a crazy dream right now, but you know, it could be a thing.

        • Hey Im in aus and thinking of going. You can get reasonable return flights from sydney to la for 1300/1400 you just have to do some searching. It could be a thing!

          • sta travel appears to have flight deals for around $1000… HMMM. probably life will stop me, but maybe, just maybe it could be a thing.

            hope you get to go :)

        • petra is right, you can pick up a return flight for about $1300. the prices can change every hour and so you have to be fairly on top of it to get the lowest fare.

          a few weeks ago i thought attending camp was also this crazy dream but now look! my face is up there on that wall of attendees. i believe in you both, and in this.

          • hmm Crystal, this could be a thing. I am owed $1300 in outstanding scholarship moniez from my uni and this seems like a good thing to use it for.

            the only thing stopping me is that i am pretty close to having a full-time grown up career-path-y job, and i should know by the end of next week whether that is also a thing. if i have a job then i can’t make it. but if i don’t, then there’s very little stopping me, i have been wanting to travel california for a few weeks anyway :)

    • If I go to the airport and kindly explain that I can’t pay for my flights like ever, but that doesn’t matter because it’s for AUTOSTRADDLE, do you think they’ll understand!?

    • i want to turn Australia into a giant continental ship so we can sail around the world visiting wherever and whoever we like. One week Autostraddle camp, the next week vacationing in the islands of Greece…

      • It would be worth it indeed, and I would be happily jet lagged. However, due to my moving interstate to Melbourne town a short while after it is not feasible. This better fucking happen again because I will be on that like cheese on vegemite!!!!!!!
        Dizzy: Boatship Australia is the best idea ever (A-camp is the other best idea ever)

  13. Airline tickets make this unreasonable for me. Sigh.
    This sounds so awesome. Please come to the Mid West. We have so much camp space!

  14. I may have to ask my parents/grandparents/siblings/friends/pets/harry potter for financial aid for 600$ plane tickets SO I CAN GO TO THIS AWESOME, AWESOME EVENT.

  15. Oh. So. Tempting.

    There should be an open mic for songs and spoken word and hot jams.

    Ummm and a chocolate whiskey fountain.

    And clothes-optional events slash glow-in-the-dark-body-paint parties.

  16. Omfg why can’t you do this in the summer?! I work at a camp and April is insanely busy!!! Wahhhhhh I wanna go!

  17. WHATTTTTTT, I’m going to be at Airborne School then! So the Army is, at once, being awesome and shitty? Pretty par for the course, actually…:(

  18. despite my social awkwardness, i was so going to do this! i was going to go alone and it was going to be scary but i was going to make friends! and i was super excited! and then i got to the registration page and realized that it’s the weekend of my best friend’s wedding and i’m in her wedding party.

    so.

    blarggg. Y’ALL BETTER MAKE IT SUPER SUCCESSFUL SO THAT I HAVE ANOTHER OPPORTUNITY. :P

  19. I want to I want to I want to go!!!
    Is it weird if I’m a high schooler and everyone else is way older and I feel odd and out of place? I’m 18!! That makes it legal right? Will I feel young and sad? Can I convince my parents to let me? These are important questions!!

    • it’s not weird at all! you won’t feel sad and no one will pick on you. maybe tell your parents that it’s a 3-day personal growth and fort-building workshop. parents love personal growth.

    • Same dilemma. If only I graduated just a little bit sooner! And didn’t live at home still… once I start college my parents can’t really say no to a 3 day lesbian camping extravaganza (they have an strong aversion to ok-ing anything that could end up with me in a sexual situation…), so I am SO there next time this happens.

  20. um this is my dream. I don’t think it is realistic for me to go, though, since I live on the East coast and don’t have my own income, and this is too cool to actually happen. HOWEVER, I hope there are Autostraddlers going to IvyQ at Brown in a couple days! It’s the next best thing, I guess!

      • CONGRATS
        (my crush on lizz grows and grows)
        (wait is this going to be awkward if/when we actually meet at camp?)
        (ugh lizz i am totally jk i mean not really but i promise i’m not creepy please don’t be weirded out when we meet)
        (i need to stop)
        (stopping now…)

  21. Eeeee I am working a temporary job that will end shortly after that, so I feel weird taking a couple of days off…especially when I’ve already taken off a day for Coachella. But I will talk to my boss today and figure out the situation.

    I am not sure if I can overcome my embarrassment/awkward feelings about being a queer girl who has never had a real queer relationship and is currently in a straight one. :/ Would that bother people?

    • re: the last part of your comment. that describes me exactly, and i’m pretty sure as loves us anyway. at least i hope so.

      unfortunately i can’t afford to go to a-camp. i’m so broke can’t even afford to visit my boyfriend at this point in time (he lives in the states, i live in canada) and i have so many angsty feelings.

    • I’m going to Coachella too and workin out how to do both. Also, in trying to make “queers at coachella” a thing cause it should be.

  22. I could not be more thrilled that this is happening and that I get to help plan all of these amazing activities for you guys!! I love your ideas and your comments.. keep em coming!! And spread the word!! xo

  23. Oooh, camp activities.

    Two words: Starcraft Tournament!
    Three Other Words: Doctor Who Marathon! Oooh, you could have panel discussion on which companion is the cutest (Spoiler Alert: It’s Amy Pond)

    Well, if I still lived in Cali, I would certainly consider it. I hope it goes well! ^_^

  24. You have no idea (OK actually lots of you probably do) how insanely jealous I am of everyone who ends up going to this.

    I wish tons o’ success on this magical fairy adventure so that it can happen again and again, preferably in many locations state-and-worldwide. :)

  25. LRTICU83LIRHXQ2LU3RNOV24THXOI4HRSL23RBNAERILUGHQLIWURBFL I CAN’T THINK I CAN’T BREATHE HOLY SHIT HOW THE FUCK AM I GONNA MAKE IT TO CALIFORNIA

  26. What terrible, amoral things I would do for this adventure opportunity and included Camp Mona swag bag.

    I pray for an east coast occasion next time.

    • “exploded into glitter”

      I LOVE that…I think I might have to use that at some point (with your permission lol)

      On a sadder note, I can’t go even though I really, really, REALLY want to. Being in the army means you have to take leave and it’s a whole process. Plus, we are deploying soon and I want to save my leave and my money so that I can go home before we head out. I hope it goes well so that it can happen again!

  27. Huge tax return, you specifically say you’ll try to make it ok for socially awful of us…its like the universe wants me to go. FUCKING FINALS.

    • I am seriously challenged at being a grown up. Please explain to me what you mean by “huge tax return” and how this is relevant to my life. Usually I email my dad with tax questions but this is something I would rather not email him about. Genuine plea for help??

      • If you made ~$7,000 or less, you don’t have to even file your taxes. Otherwise, get thy ass to an H&R Block or Liberty Tax with your W-2s (which will set you back about $150), and any relative tax docs from your school. I got a lot back this year because I borrowed a lot for school.

  28. YOU GUYS. this is what dreams are made of.
    I’m always creepin’ on Autostraddle, but this just made me finally join. I WANT TO GO!

  29. ok just to let you guys know i made a deposit but have NO IDEA if this will actually be able to happen so in case it doesn’t, i got a spot for one of y’all.

  30. Of course this is during my university’s reading days. I hate you all.

    And by “hate” I mean “love,” but still…

  31. aw man! tht sounds so awesome! but i have a tourney and school then. the next one should be a summer camp! :]

  32. Nooooo! I’m graduating on the 29th!! If only it could’ve been moved up like 2 days, then it would’ve landed during the week’s break I have between the end of the classes and graduation day. Sigh!

    This sounds absolutely amazing though!

  33. holy fuck this sounds like magical fantasyland i want to CRY

    i’m in the uk but just knowing this is a thing that exists is making my heart swell up

  34. This looks amazing…if only I could justify spending $600 on a plane ticket…um, maybe you should consider having one in Hawaii? Just saying. We have a lot of beaches. And rainbows.

    • I’m going to offer my assurance anyway. We will be doing lots of ice breaker type things the first night that will help everyone get to know each other better. Plus, we’ll have lots of interns on hand to help integrate you and talk to you and be your friends like an RA in college. Also… think of how proud you’ll be of yourself, getting totally out of your comfort zone. By the end of the weekend, we’ll all have lots of new friends!

  35. The thought of just how awesome this is definitely going to be is making my brain have seizures. A few more of those and then maybe I’ll be fully convinced to use all my money to just fly over from Europe, already. YOU GUYS I WANT TO COME SO BADLY, why is the Atlantic so big/expensive to cross?

  36. NOOOOOOOOO I mean YESSSSSSSS but also nooooo I go to school in LA but I’m abroad in Paris this semester :[

    By which I mean :] because Paris, but also :[ because I want so so so badly to be a part of A-Camp v1.0. Pinky swear there’ll be another?

  37. I’d love to go, but I’m a Midwesterner on a travel budget. I’ll be in California in early April to visit 3 grad schools, but the official visit dates all end about 2 weeks before A-Camp starts. I can’t afford to squat in Cali until then.

    The only way I can go to A-Camp is if I’m accepted to Stanford – its admitted students weekend ends just a few days before A-Camp, so I could just drive down from SF. Stanford’s decision just got more crucial…

    Addenda:
    Brilliant plan ladies. Whomever came up with this deserves a raise/promotion/benevolent glitter bomb.

    I also vote for an East Coast version of A-Camp.

  38. It would cost me $800 just for plane tickets so that’s not going to happen. BUT I think there should be Canada camp at some point! Everyone can get married, it’s perfect.

      • Hey! I live in Thunder Bay! I’ll road-trip with you. Or fly with you. I might even live in the same house as you. Maybe you’re cooking me breakfast as we speak?

  39. This better be super duper successful. $300 is only £191 which would be totally do-able. UNFORTUNATELY the airfare is the killer and totally unaffordable so here’s what I’m going to do Autostraddle. I’ll donate a bunch of money this year. At the end of June I’ll hand in my PhD thesis, I’ll graduate and then get a real job. Then next year I’ll fly over and join youse all. That’s what I’ll do. Unless I win the lottery or come into a lot of money. Then I’ll be there.

  40. So I was gonna go to Dinah Shore this year, haha FUCK THAT!

    OH MY GAYS, I am so excited! I’ll be coming aaaaaaaall the way from the UK and it’s going to be so. fucking. worth. it.

    But please don’t have Harto as the secret guest. I will queen out so bad on her, it will be traumatizing for all parties.

    Also, there needs to be a five a side soccer tournament. And touch rugby. I’m happy to do coaching for touch rugby. I’m certified!

    • Where will you be flying from, currently looking at flying from Manc or Birmingham International… I’m pretty sure my student loan wasn’t intended for a queer vacation to California, but i think i can deal with being homeless and starving for three months. Although i’m not sure i could cope with being unable to afford cigarettes and whiskey for three months.

  41. well i could go to this or to russia and croatia for two weeks this summer…. agggg two once in a lifetime opportunities in the same year when i have no money ever. ima just go rob a 1%er or something. womp womp

  42. I am so ridiculously excited for this that I am seriously contemplating registering and flying out all the way from Nebraska :)

    like really my heart fell out of my chest when I saw it on the home screen
    omg

  43. when you said there was something exciting happening in april, i did not imagine anything close to this amazing.

  44. Oh my god, it’s like gay girl scout camp.

    I’ve never wished I lived in California more than I do right now.

  45. Sitting in a cafe (where no homos play) in this broken down citae, annotating my literature review draft, I’ve written in the column –

    1) oh my lordy AS CAMP!!
    2) writing/knowing how to write –> important
    3) i need to buy a plant

    I hope everyone who goes has the time of their lives! How amaze

  46. [I will not be a downer. I will not whine. I will not be a whining downer.]

    A-Camp is a fantastic idea. I predict it will also be a fantastic reality and a wild success. Hope everyone has a great time (mellow and groovy vibes sent, especially to the socially awkward peoples—aka my variety of peoples).

    [Remarkable job, self. Being happy for others is nice. Four for me.]

    • Don’t even get me started, I know how to make the butterfly, the box and the Chinese staircase…

      Omg, I still can’t.

      I CAN’T PROCESS ALL THIS AWESOME!!!! IT’S LIKE I’M BACKED UP, CONSTIPATED, OMFG TOO MUCH AWESOME, AS, TOO MUCH.

      • omg you can do square? i could never do square. i was the crafts instructor one year and i had to get other female counsellors to teach their kids square for me. bra you have to show me.

  47. Wow. Just wow! Way to come up with all of the ideas!!! Now I just need to come up with monies! This is probably the most awesome event evar!!!!! I don’t even feel like missing Dinah matters at all because this exists! Yay for nerds and social awkwardness ;)

  48. This sounds absolutely amazing. I hope it is a ROUSING success so there can be more and maybe if its on the East Coast next time I can go!

    Also please post lots and lots of pictures and stories and things after its over so those of us who can’t go can live vicariously through all of the lucky mofos who do go.

  49. Damnit, it’s times like this I curse living in Australia.

    If I had a spare $1500 I’d so book a plane right now, but alas I am poor. :(

  50. Is there any way for those of us that can’t go to “sponsor” or have some sort of scholarship for someone that can’t go for financial reasons?

    • okay, i love this idea so so so much (and someone else suggested it below) and we’d actually discussed something similar, but i’m wondering how we would be able to pull it off w/r/t who would be the recipient of said sponsorship funds? like how would we decide who got them? would we do a lottery? ideas?

      • Maybe half/half. Total amt. donated/sponsored to be split into two groups: one for full free rides (maybe selected at random or voted on based by most compelling story, I don’t know) and one to be divided up among everyone else who requested financial support to help subsidize their cost?

        Probably those are horrible ideas but I want everyone to be able to come and Ellen should basically sponsor like 200 Autostraddlers in need, so…

      • I actually think FFAF has a good idea there. I also think it depends highly on the amount of money that is donated. If you only get enough for two full camp fees, then perhaps just do a lottery for two lucky winners. If you get enough for four or five full camp fees, perhaps split it into two full scholarships and several partial scholarships. I like the idea of a random drawing over some kind of write in process, but that’s just me.

      • Perhaps do a week long Autostraddle-is-fucking-awesome A-Camp Scholarship funds drive, see how much you get, and go from there. And I am totally down for donating some $$ to help fellow ASers get to camp!

  51. Justin Bieber? Hahah JK.

    Sounds like a blast too bad I have class that thursday. – – I cud go friday- Sunday though!

  52. Hey ladies! This sounds fantastic. I’m going to try to make it work, but on the off chance I can’t get away from work to fly out Thursday, can people arrive late? Like on Friday? I assume we’d have to arrange our own transportation, but it might be my best shot at actually getting there.

    • Also, if I get to go I’m totally digging the idea of a writer’s tutorial. Any chance at an acting or comedy workshop or something similar? That would be fantastic!

      • yes there will be an acting/comedy workshop or something similar with the u planit grrls or with julie & brandy — pending! and wheeee re: writing!

        and yup, you could arrive late. unfortunately we have to pay the site for the entire weekend, so you’d have to still pay the full cost, but it’s def ok to come late!

        • Oh, I figured I’d have to pay the full price to reserve my spot. It’d be worth it. Seriously, I know it’s a lot of money, but $300 for four days and three nights is an *incredibly* good price. And $10-$30 for workshops and tutorials from pros? And a freakin’ payment plan?! Seriously, you guys pulled out all the stops making this as doable for people as possible. You didn’t have to do that. But you’re fantastic, so you did. Thank you!

          Yay about acting! Just got my first comedy acting job (was just a producer and screenwriter before, so acting is new) and want to take it further. It’d be great fun!

          And wheeee right back at ya to writing! I mostly write and publish fiction, but I want to bust into more informative/personal/blog-friendly writing and who better to learn from? :D

  53. omg so many comments…

    YOU GUYS. If thousands of lesbians can converge for Dinah every year just to drink their faces off with other lesbians, LOTS OF YOU CAN MAKE IT TO AUTO-CAMP.

    I believe in you.

    I am also so so excited and overwhelmed with happiness — we had talked about doing this since the very beginning and now it’s finally happening. We’re finally doing this. WOOOOO!

  54. One of the best parts of this post has been seeing everyone completely lose their shit in the comments. Look what you’ve done, Riese.
    I love it.

  55. I would totally overcome my shyness and the Rocky Mountains to be there if I wasn’t going to be in boot-camp in April!

    Totally different kind of camp…

  56. THIS IS MADE OF SO MUCH FUCKING GLITTERY AWESOMENESS AND A PARK.

    ALSO I WOULD JUST LIKE TO SAY THAT I WAS WOKEN WITH A CRAZED TEXT MESSAGE FROM A FRIEND ASKING IF SHE SHOULD FLY ACROSS THE ATLANTIC BEFORE HER SCHOOL TERM ENDED FOR THIS.

    you see what you make people do, autostraddle?! -mad wistful sigh

    • please let autostraddle be awesome and glittery and full of strangers i’d love to hang out with when i get out of school and have an income. i would bring said friend with me ALL THE WAY FROM SINGAPORE (or we can hitch a ride from the traveling Australian island) to wherever it was at and my life, it would be complete, you guys.

    • If you take one of the tutorials, use it as an excuse. For example, if you take the writing tutorial say it’s a writing retreat. Or you could just default to it being a networking event. Or hey! How about a “family reunion.” We’re all sisters, after all ;D

  57. Oh man, if only I wasn’t halfway around the world! And it’s on my birthday! Anyone got a spare 2k lying around for flights?

    SO JEALOUS.

  58. Not to sound like a boozer but what’s the alcohol policy for this event?
    Not Allowed?
    BYOB?
    Sold by AS?

    Only ask because definitely a Shystraddler here but this sounds exciting and I want to try something “beyond my comfort zone” and go. A bit of booze would be helpful in making this shystraddler less shy around the masses.

  59. so if anyone wants to donate frequent flyer miles to a straddler who’s about to become underemployed, let me know lol.

    i’ve been freaking out about this all day, so exciting!!

    • I’m very tempted to just study beforehand and leave early for my test monday, but I doubt jetlag and a pharmacology final go well together.

  60. This looks phenomenal. I just reserved my spot!

    Also, my dear shy/hesitant straddlers I have been repeatedly compared to a lovable Labrador and was voted “Friendliest” in high school. I promise I will come talk to you if you’re standing by yourself. So, no excuses!

  61. If this wouldn’t cost me over $700 including flights, I would have already reserved my spot. Sounds amazing. Have fun, autostraddlers!