Registration for the American Booksellers Association's Fifth Winter Institute (Wi5), to be held from Wednesday through Friday, February 3 - 5, 2010, in San Jose, California, began last week. The annual education event, exclusively for ABA bookstore and provisional members, is sponsored by Ingram Book Company/Ingram Publisher Services.
The Wi 5 program, at the San Jose Doubletree, includes 25-plus education sessions on topics such as children's bookselling, graphic novels, health care reform, gift cards, the IndieBound movement, and more. Wednesday, February 3, will be a special Technology Day, with tracks for booksellers new to the digital phenomenon as well as for those more experienced.
Registration for Wi5 is capped at 500, and spaces will be filled on a first-come, first-served basis. There is a $50 nonrefundable meal fee for the three-day event that will help offset some of the food and beverage costs. ABA members can also register for a single-day pass; the meal fee for a single-day pass is $25 (booksellers will need to identify the day they are planning to attend when registering). ABA added the meal fee this year to help keep the education program free to all members. Since it is not logistically possible for ABA to track who will be attending the meal functions at this time, the meal fee is mandatory and due upon registration.
Past Winter Institutes have been sellouts, so ABA is encouraging members to register for the education program as soon as possible. The Wi5 event registration deadline is December 1. Register now.
ABA has reserved a block of rooms at Wi5's host hotel, the Doubletree San Jose, for Tuesday, February 2, through Saturday, February 6, 2010. The special room rate of $115/night for ABA bookseller and provisional members and participating publisher sponsors only will be available until Friday, January 8, 2010, or until the group block is sold out, whichever comes first. This year's hotel cancellation policy is different from previous years: To avoid being charged one night's rate plus tax, cancellations must be made prior to Friday, January 8. Any cancellations after that date will be subject to a charge of one night's rate plus tax. Registration is via the Doubletree's dedicated Wi5 registration page. Any questions regarding Wi5 hotel reservations should be addressed directly to the hotel at (408) 453-4000. Overnight self-parking is available at $5.00 per night. Reserve a room now.
ABA Publisher Partners are sponsoring more than two-dozen Wi5 bookseller scholarships. Scholarship winners will be selected from among all ABA bookseller members, with booksellers dropping off a business card at the ABA booth at the fall regional trade shows earning an extra entry in the scholarship drawings. Scholarships will cover the cost of reasonable airfare, up to a four-night hotel stay at the Doubletree San Jose, and the Wi5 meal fee. Scholarship winners will be drawn at the end of October, after the last regional trade show.
Watch for updates on the complete Wi5 program in upcoming editions of BTW.