John Goss, president, of the Astronomical League, thanks NOVAC volunteers for their work supporting the 2016 conference. John is looking forward to listening to wide variety of speakers in the next few days. ALCon conferences such as this one are an amazing value compared to conferences you may have attended while at work.
John said that there are a variety of reasons for attending a conference such as hearing the talks, going on great tours, etc.. But the primary reason is to meet others and discuss how they operate their clubs, what new techniques and equipment they are using, and how they perform public outreach. You probably know about the challenges in your own club but Astronomical League conferences provide the opportunity to learn from each other and hear how others handle various issues.