Most convention reports are in Swedish and can be found here, but the following are in English:
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If you’re joining this years Swecon and visiting from abroad, it’s our responsibility as con-com and Swedish delegates to introduce you to the concept of Swedish fika. Frankly, the Finns have it too, but as they also add salmiakki to most things, I will ignore their input on all things edible and drinkable.
Swedish fika is a social institution, much akin to the Brits Afternoon tea. It’s an old slang word based on a former word for coffee (today it’s kaffe, it used to be kaffi). Fika-rast basically means coffee break, and Swedes (alright, the Finns as well) take coffee very, very seriously. Fika has evolved to mean and include many things: There is morgonkaffe (coffee break in the morning between breakfast and lunch), and eftermiddagskaffe (coffee break in the afternoon between lunch and dinner). Fika means coffee (sometimes substituted for tea or hot chocolate, or even cold beverages like lemonade) with pastries, cakes, a sandwich and sometimes even a lighter meal. When you go for a fika, it could be a simple cup of black coffee with a colleague, or a full out pastry-eating party with a friend or even a date (fika can creep up on you like that). Whether you like it or not (and why wouldn’t you?), there’s a coffee shop or three on almost every street in central Uppsala. You can’t avoid them if you tried. Within ten minutes walk from the convention venue you will find:
Landings Konditori – Not too exciting, but serves all the classics, like the Swedish “princessbakelse”, a spongecake with whipped cream and jam covered in green marzipan. Located in the mall St: Pers gallerian, next door from the con-venue.
Espresso House – Also located in St. Pers, it’s the closest to a Starbucks you’ll get in Sweden without going to an actual Starbucks. They have a long list of cold and hot drinks (you can get them vegan).
Kardemumma – A small, unassuming but nice café fused with the public library just around the corner.
Årummet – One of central towns largest cafés, on the eastern bank. If the weather allows for it, have your fika outdoors with a lovely view of the cathedral and creek. Has plenty alternatives for people with different dietary restrictions. Take to the left outside the con-venue, turn around the corner onto S:t Olofsgatan and walk to the end of the street.
Linné Hörnan – Ligher food and so, so many pastries. Round the corner unto S:t Olofsgatan, but when you reach the library, cross the street to your right and walk past the English Bookshop.
Linné Konstantina – One of towns older coffee shops, it’s cosy and old-fashioned, with a nice assortment of pastries, sandwiches and soups for lunch guests. It’s just next door to Linné Hörnan.
I recommend Linnébullen (a cinnamonroll the size of a childs face) at Linné Konstantina for an old-school fika, the passionfruit cheesecake at Årummet and the rich American chocolate cake at Linné Hörnan. Don’t forget to re-upp your coffee cup, or as we say “påtår”. For more useful info, watch two young men get super intense about fika.
Now, welcome to Uppsala. Have some fika.
The programme is online! Minor changes may still occur. To read the programme on your mobile you need an “event code”, which is KON2017.
For programme participants: check the dates and times for the programming so you know when you need to be on site. Let us know as quickly as possible if you are scheduled on a day when you are not present at the convention.
Are you bringing your kids to Kontur? A science fiction convention isn’t the best place for the youngest; panel discussions can be boring to listen to and the venue isn’t suited for running around.
Kontur will have an activity room for kids, where you can draw, read children’s books and play board games. Children should of course not be left unattended.
Still haven’t booked a hotel room for the duration of the convention? The designated con-hotel Clarion Hotel Gillet still has 30 of the dubble rooms they put aside for us left! The rate is 1194kr a night. To book a room, email firstname.lastname@example.org and make sure to mention booking code 120308. The rooms will be released to the public next week, so this is your last chance!
For more other hotel options, see travel and accommodation.