2017 Convention Survey Results

This data was collected from 49 respondents that attended the 2017 LPF Convention in Cocoa Beach.

Additional Comments About Convention

The one speaker I wish I attended was Larry Sharpe. The rest, although excellent people, just don’t draw a crowd.
Larry Sharpe is always amazing. He is the next voice of the party.
Great themed and content filled speakers. I missed many, but half of them I could have been able to attend, but the information and schedule was not in my hand until Saturday. 200 attendees X $3 in printing and postage = getting the key information in the attendees hands 2 weeks prior to the weekend. Event a $0.65 letter to the attendees could have made a big difference.
Part of our particular issue is that we don’t eat the food, and we were not depended on the schedule to feed ourselves. Phone text reminders would have also been great to move the attendees en-mass to the destinations.
I thought all the speakers I attended did a great job, and the topics were great
Larry Sharpe is an amazing motivator. The speakers were all very interesting.
I understand, that the main goal of any party is to attract new and strong supporters. Nothing was said at the convention about that by speakers. Larry Sharpe made a good speech, but he spoke about the organizing things as candidate, but this is not my level. I did not understand why Mr. Welch talked about Vazlav Havel instead of, for example, Mr. Trump and Mr. DiLorenzo talked about the mess in Universities instead of economics and its connection to the politics in USA. It seems the topics (and these speakers too) were chosen randomly, so it was not interesting.

Unfortunately, I wasnt able to attend all the sessions.

For next year – Can we get Trey Parker?

Was disappointed that Austin Petersen cancelled.
Sharpe is outstanding. If he’s willing to come, we should have him. Welch also.
Really enjoyed Larry Sharpe’s presentation.
This is the first time I heard Larry Sharpe. I earnestly hope it will not be the last. Larry for Prez !!
Enjoyed Larry and Matt the most.
Scheetz was not given enough time. Either he did not know how much time he was allotted or he was short changed.
There was some confusion as to where some of the speakers were speaking.
We were missing one speaker. Where was Austin Petersen, yall?! Probably not your fault, but try to keep ALL of the speakers next time, or advertise them closer to convention date so I don’t assume they’re still speaking, but aren’t 🙂
Larry Sharpe was amazing.
Some speakers at the meals could have used a slide projector.
I especially enjoyed DiLorenzo and Sharpe.
Have a half day of workshops.
Everyone we met was very welcoming, approachable, and interactive.
Think in the future booking a few bigger names and assuring photo ops may be helpful


LPF Business Meeting Logistics

Comments about dropping paper:

Too much room for delegates not having information or for having the wrong information.
is everyone ready for that? Many of us are note takers, paper makes that very convenient.
Helps to have a print out for making some notes.
So long as the access set-up is made known months ahead, and that the actual documents can be out-out to paper easily for self or service provider printing. LPFCON might consider, for a fee, pre-printing the documents to a book form and delivering them to interested parties. This can be a fund-raiser opportunity, plus you can add additional collateral documents, like the year’s schedule of affiliate events, to the book.
Hard copies easy to share and highlite and correct underneath change
Convenient paper in hand can be marked up with notes relevant to the motions and the business meeting.
I believe that not everyone would be in completely for digital. I think it needs to be mixed.
Some members have trouble with technology and would feel left out.
Paper notepads don’t need a power cord 😀
Following along on paper was important for me as going online to view the information wasn’t an option and is tedious on a smartphone.
Having a paper copy is less confusing than trying to follow online. I would like both. Projecting current motions on the screen is very useful. It was often very confusing what we were voting on.
The paper stuff works everywhere and always.
reading complex documents like that on phones is not ideal. Putting the text up on a large screen was a good idea, especially as real time motions to amend were made.
I spend enough time in my day reading emails and texting and all else. Official functions should have official papers on paper. Not all of us are millennials.
It was very hard to read the screen at convention this year from only half way back in the chairs.
I was taking notes on the printed copies.
I always find hard copy is easier to read and I am able to make comments directly onto the sections that I have additional questions or concerns with.
Viewing online is kinda difficult sometimes.
It’s nice to have paper copies for my aging eyes. Plus devices run out of power when you least expect it.
We should primarily go digital; however, we need to have a small number of hardcopies available for those without laptops or digital devices.
My phone is not reliable for this kind of thing. I prefer having paper in my hand.

Comments about the printed program:

It allowed scheduling for the weekend’s activities
it helped me manage my time and expectations
Must have been useful, I had to get a set three times, maybe four. People kept snatching mine.
Proper information – Too Late. Yes, the inform is in there, but to accustom oneself to the layout and the details does take time, and most are battered around when at convention. The printing, colors and layout were beautiful, I am really speaking of the process and experience of the attendee that does not have the program in hand until Saturday.
doesn’t rely on batteries easy to share with fellow libertarians.
I could write notes on it as things came up
It’s good as a keep sake and gives you solid background info while providing sponsorship opportunities.
Having a printed copy on hand allowed quick reference to the itinerary
I went through it when I arrived and referred to it during the meeting. It’s easier than trying to look at it on my phone.
I referred to it as needed. The event locations werent specific enough (at first).
It had information I would not have seen otherwise. If it was on the internet, I didn’t know.
This was the nicest printed booklet and had a ton of great info on the events of the weekend. It is also a nice souvenir.
The organization of information wasn’t the best
The booklet was convenient. I used the printed program to keep track of the different breakout sections.
One comment: There should be additional information as to the location of the hospitality suites – especially if break-out sessions will occur there.
I actually was missing it from my delegate packet, but got one later on. Since this was my first event like this, it was helpful.
I liked the ads from sponsors. Nice to have program with agenda to refer to w/o relying on a device.
I know they’re expensive, but they are nice.
I like to have something to refer to.
Platform and Rules proposals should be distributed to delegates a week before the convention. Those who want amendments should post them in Slack ahead of the convention.
Although I had the program, agenda, etc available on my laptop & phone, there were times I referenced the physical program.
The visualization of the changes to the platform and Constitution were very helpful in evaluating them.
It was easier to search things on my phone.
I don’t remember where I put it. Please make it bright yellow and put it in the folder next time so I don’t lose it.
Didn’t need to use it
I never got a printed program.

Comments about the organization of convention:

Things happened at the time and place indicated
Due to the open campus layout of the facility and hotel, LPFCON would have been communicating more effectively to our embers onsite by having a couple strategically located schedule signs and placards on the sidewalks and in the intersections of the campus. Details like schedule, agenda, food and hospitality rooms, with a map showing where these places are. Even the non LPF visitors could have dropped in to meet some of us. True, some of these details are not confirmed until onsite, but this would have been very valuable.
business meeting should be organized by region with easel holding number and counties represented. During region rep elections the candidates name should also be listed.
Marc did an excellent job and connecting everyone.
As the Region 2 Director for the National Organization of Libertarian Women I am interested in connecting these two groups for the next convention. Perhaps NOLW can be a sponsor/speaker with a woman presenter and have an “existing place” on the schedule to better reach out to all Libertarian Women.
It was difficult to figure out what was going on and where at times.
Char-Lez did a great job of keeping things going, but there was too much wasted time. I wanted to hear more from the candidates before voting.
All the needed staff and stuff were at the proper places in proper time.
Every year we have the same problem of the by-laws/platform/etc. discussions going on for hours, and the elections are always up in the air because of it. Everyone goes to the Convention for the elections: not everyone gives a damn about the bylaws and whatever else. If you want more focused involvement, the schedule should prioritize the elections and relegate the other business to a place where it doesn’t derail everything else. Seriously, every. single. year. we have this same problem, and no one thinks it might be a scheduling problem.
There was always something to do and very little overlapping events.
Sign-in wasn’t ready/organized on Friday. Black lanyards were missing on Friday, etc.
There was no way we were going to get through all the items on the business agenda
everything went pretty smooth.
Having everything in a central area there was no questions on where to be. Not much down time (which is a good thing) didn’t feel like i was waiting around for the next event to start.
We need to have a system to keep track of delegates leaving the room and returning. Maybe a table in back of the room to collect badges and returns them to delegate upon return.
Events were laid out in an orderly manner.
Marc and the committee did an outstanding job.
Everything went as expected
The last couple years especially, the convention seems to have been better organized.
I found everything I wanted to do easily. The meetings were on time and had plenty of time to mingle with the other delegates and guests.
Seemed smooth, especially given its size.
If you could just tape a speaker and food schedule to the wall outside of the convention door, I would have shown up to everything. The book I lost on the first night. The business meetings were great though. My gripes are mostly about not knowing the time schedule for food and speakers.
well scheduled
Official events went smoothly so far as I could tell. Just wish I could have attended more.
The common area space was cramped, making it difficult to get in and out of the banquet hall. The “registration” times weren’t convenient, especially if all you were doing was picking up a badge.
Not on time
We got our registration late and our badges had to be changed, the secretary ♡ fixed it quickly and had all the answers us newbies had.
Given the fact that people have a difficult time with compromise the event went smoothly.
Organization wise it was good

Comments about the venue:

Old hotel, little to do in the area, no outside advertising of the event at or near the hotel, media was not apparent
many amenities to enjoy, the beach, pool area, mambos no need for offsite distraction
Great beachfront. Meeting room comfortable. Internet didn’t work well in the room.
I thought the facility was great.
The venue was to dominated by excessive committee change to by laws and especially platform. EC should limit changes.
It would have been great if we could have reserved two sections of rooms plus the lofts. Because the venue was so large there were several people who had difficulty getting to all the places. We, for example we so far from the LPF hospitality suite – we never really had much of a chance to network there. But we did a bunch of networking on our side of the hotel.
Think about the layout and set it up like a trade show to maximize the opportunities for sponsors and supporters.
The venue and meeting spaces allowed for a fun and productive weekend.
It was just ok. I would have preferred a more business-like setting, but I understand people bring families who need something else to do. The meeting space was fine. The meals weren’t very good.
Put in the program/booklet the location of the things like hospitality suit. A few people, including me, couldn’t find it.
The resort had several shortcomings. It was cheap, which I understand was important, but overall, for what I had to stay in, it wasnt worth what I paid. Bathroom sink falling off the wall. Keycards never worked. musty smell, wet carpet, a doorknob that fell off when the bathroom door got stuck, the bathroom shower water knob wouldnt adjust temperature, no extra pillows or blankets.
I realize that there is an issue of cost, but if we are competing with the Republicans and Democrats for money and members, we need to act like it. Continually hosting our annual convention in dumpy motels is a surefire way of continuing the public’s perception that we are a party of irrelevant pot smokers.
The venue didn’t look that nice and had some issues with the hotel doors but the inside of the rooms and meeting locations was nice.
It was hard to find specific rooms; the hotel was like a maze.
It’s a very worn out property. Parking was constantly an issue, the room had a constant smell of mildew, room keys rarely worked and we had to go back to get other keys that also had issues. Obviously the location of the property was fantastic, with beach access etc. The on site bar and grille was great too.
A little tight outside of the business meeting (hallway). Noise intruded.
The hotel was so-so. However the price point for the cheap rooms were great. If I would have known now I would have upgraded to a better room it was just not very nice. Never having to drive to get anything, being a ‘all in one resort’ was perfect.
Overall the venue and meeting space convention was a very good choice. Staff was friendly and effective. Convention ran very smoothly due to the efforts of the convention committee and numerous volunteers.
I personally like to pay a little more for a more up to date and better kept hotel room. I realize some might be on a tight budget. But for others the hotels have been typically less than thrilling in the 3 years I have attended.
If you have to pay for the hospitality suite, do not have one next time.
Although I know why there were no tables in the meeting room, it needs to be a priority at future conventions. People need to use their laptops and have a place to put their things, write things down, etc.
The hotel was nothing special. Really didn’t matter to me. It met minimum standards no problem.
The layout wasn’t particularly intuitive. I spent a lot of time having to help people find things.
Venue was great, somewhat of a maze, but they accommodated us very very well.
old hotel, no local advertising of the convention
Can’t complain. I spent a lot of time walking due to being lost but that’s mostly my own fault I suppose.
It was too spread out, missing a lobby restaurant.
The hotel was a mess, the rooms were not clean and uncomfortable. It was a bad motel with a conference room. The meeting room was fine.
I thought it was great, I wish we’d all had more time to hang out but that’s not really the point. 🙂
Things seemed very spread out and far apart at times

Overall, what changes would you suggest to organizers for next year?

Must be done in another venue. The convention will come to my county next year…
maintain the feel of convention, lots of opportunities and spots for small impromptu gatherings, I guess that would happen organically anywhere but it seemed easier there than say last year in Broward
Maybe go to three days and work the training type sessions into the schedule.
SMS app to flood the details out to those onsite. Yes, Slack exists, but when one is working the daylight hours at a convention, at present the LPF Slack app is not set up to support delivering the basic details, so as not to have to hunt for it. It just wont work as a means to PROMPT the attendee to go there, do this.
Do an outreach and sign waving outside the convention for a couple of hours. Have an hour reserved for outreach discussion and regional outreach calendar development .
Include the NOLW.
Coordinate and Advertise the SOCIALs where we can all attend – so we know what to expect and not conflict with each other.

I know that takes others providing info sooner rather than later and that is difficult at best for us sometimes.

The vendor table layout was poor as opposed to the year before. The tables were off to the side out of site / out of mind and provided next to zero value to the sponsors.
The layout of the convention was not bad, perhaps more social events may be in order?
There was not enough time to consider all the proposals. The EC worked so hard to revise the platform and there wasn’t time to vote on it all. I think it would be helpful to correspond with delegates ahead of time stressing that they need to review the agenda and proposals before coming and be prepared with questions or revisions.
Choose a speakers and their topics, taking into consideration the structure of participants and the questions they may have.
We should hold the convention where the density of registered voters is greatest to accommodate the greatest likelihood of attendees/delegates. Fort Walton Beach doesnt meet that criteria. Its practically the farthest distance to drive for the entire state, except those in the western panhandle.
– Prioritize the elections; better scheduling of the business that doesn’t interest the whole body
– More professional venue
Maybe make the convention a little longer. We didn’t have enough time tonfet through all the platform motions.
Let me run the sign-in desk. I didn’t appreciate the Char-lez lanyard being pushed on me on Friday because the black lanyards were conveniently missing. I have nothing against him, but it seemed biased and pushy when it should have been neutral. They could have independently passed those out to supporters from their own table. I would have liked to see the candidates actually man their promotional tables before the events started on Friday and Saturday in an area where I could find them/see them.
Aim higher with the location, and make it centralized. I personally think Fort Walton Beach is a bad idea and it’s going to hurt attendance next year. It’s a 9 hour drive for those in South Florida.
There needs to be a more thought-out and reasonable business agenda
Place registration further away from Business Meeting room. Request a “quiet area” within 20 feet of the entrance so that noise does not intrude into the Business Meeting – it was annoying.
Cash bar available during dinner. It would help people open their wallets during auction items too.
Better food. Some of the dinner selections were inedible. Powdered eggs for breakfast were ify, too.
A check in/out table in back of room as well as a credential table out in reception area.
Nicer accomodations.

Consider open floor microphone event. Libertarians love to share opinions and it might be fun to have an evening where people can go up and speak for 4 minutes max (otherwise people will be throwing things at the speaker)

Platform and Rules proposals should be distributed to delegates a week before the convention, and be available on the website. Those who want amendments should post them in Slack ahead of the convention. Those who will be nominated for office should be listed on the website as early as possible. Maybe these things were done, and I just did not know.
Better audio visual interaction would be nice for the business meetings. More organization for the voting would also seem to be needed.
Not to be mean but less “Paul Stanton, Volusia County” would be a plus also.
Got to fix the student sponsorship setup.
The food. I made it to one meeting and there was food, but it was sandwiches. If possible could you wrap a few sandwiches for people who aren’t sure about the speaker so we can wander and chat outside of the luncheon room?
Also please make sure we don’t run out of coffee or coffee creamer. That was horrible, but probably not your fault.

It would also be great if people who paid for food packages could have had an option for no food, but substitute an energy drink. I can’t eat that early in the morning so I skipped every breakfast 🙁

Hospitality suites: I only found one Promenade Suite. Is this the suite you are talking about or were there more?

Not have it located so far away from where I live lol
More focus on training/breakouts. Either the biz meeting agenda was unrealistic or the meeting was time-managed poorly.

I’m a
concerned about attendance given the remote location for 2018. Will there reliable options for anyone who wants to attend remotely?

I really can’t think of a single thing other than the lack of time which you have absolutely no control over. We can’t have absolutely week long convention cause I miss my far away friends.
Ditch the plant location and have it more centrally located in counties which have strong LP voter numbers

How did you become a party member?

Personal convictions, a desire to act to elect people to office to change public policy, the desire to effectively compete with the power structure
I had libertarian leanings for decades and got used to being ‘that guy’ but in March 2009 DHS published a memo identifying among others, 3rd party members as anti establishment govt supporters and a possible criteria for identifying “militia members”. In April I became a card carrying LPN & LPF member and started working to getting a local Brevard affiliate started, which happened in 2012. I just wanted the govt to know their problem just got bigger by I
Ed Clark, Ron Paul, and Harry Browne were the candidates. (LP though, not LPF until later)
Connecticut and National GOP pissed me off into a disaffected voter status. 2014 Adrian Wylie was my impetus to formally sign on as LPF.
the yippies disbanded, and norml recommended the libertaians in early 80s.
We found this party when Adrian Wyllie showed up at our March Against Monsanto when he was running for Gov.
I could no longer remain apolitical and watch the destruction of our society by state abuse.
I have been a Libertarian for several years
Ron Paul 2008.
I came to the LP by seeing Gary Johnson at Paul Fest in Tampa while the city was under lockdown for the Republican National Convention. (Black helicopters, APC’s, thousands of police officers combing the streets, metal fences everywhere) The dichotomy was striking, and the discovery of the LP solidified for me.
I married into it.
I share the Libertarian Principles and wanted to see and listen to the people involved. For those, who may read this feedback, which is unlikely – I marked “bad” for the overall experience of the convention, because I didn’t get the answers to my questions. At the same time I understand, that the convention is basically held for the people, which are more deeply and longer involved, and not for newcomers. That’s why some subjects were not covered. Maybe I’ll find the answers at local level.
years of not feeling like I had a place, then finding out about the local affiliate and attending a meeting.
An officer of my county affiliate
I have been libertarian for a long time, was refistered NPA in highschool because I didn’t fit either party. Austin Peterson’s campaign caught my attention and a live stream he did on being the change you want to see motivated me to actually get involved.
I’ve been a Libertarian forever, but last year’s crazy election inspired me to get more involved. It wasn’t easy defending Gary Johnson, but I did my best. I was able to drum up votes for Paul Stanton even though I hadn’t met him yet (and he lives in my town, haha).
Former Republican. Was worn out with the bad options for leadership and probably have been a Libertarian my whole life.
The government got too big.
After years of sitting back and being an non-affiliated voter, I thought it was time to take a stand on principles.
Research into the party, its platforms, and being fed up with the ‘status-quo’ Presidential election cycle really hit it home with me and changed my party affiliation from none to Libertarian before the primary.
It’s what I do!
Ben Bachrach offered to drive. I was gonna go anyway.
Disturbed by general movemement in our society where freedoms are being taken right before our eyes.
Heard interview with local Libertarian leaders on a radio talk show in 1979. Then got involved with Ed Clark campaign
Last years election
Saw Harry Browne, 1996 presidential nominee on C-Span. Changed party registration 3 weeks later.
Ron Paul. He is who got me interested. I have been hanging out with libertarians for years though.
Alex Snitker campaign
Austin Petersen is awesome!
He’s why I left the D’s and registered LPF. LPOrange is why I’m still involved post election. The convention solidified my membership. Libertarians are amazing! I’m here to stay!
The opportunity to put people, money and candidates together to elect them to office
Disappointment from the two big parties. A friend told me about Ron Paul in 08. I voted Gary Johnson in 12 and 16. Online political quizzes helped convince me. Registered L after several years of NPA libertarian because I was pissed at duopoly.
Less Gary Johnson and more repulsion by the Rs and Ds.
Had always been a libertarian in my thoughts and actions but didn’t actual take the leap until the 2008 election.
Ron Paul and Audit the Fed brought me to the party.
This was my first attendance to a LPF Convention. I wanted to get involved more directly with the State Party.
I want to change the world.
I want Americans, especially my children, to know what it truly means to be free. I want them to feel it. I know the only way to truly change what’s wrong is to get in there and make it happen so we joined the party that above everything else wants all humans to be truly free. I can feel their want for freedom when we’re together. It’s where I belong.
When the Republican Congress passed (at the time) an omnibus spending bill in January 2016, that was the nail in the coffin.
Vern Buchanan (REP)
The party wants to move the country in a direction I want to see for my children and want to be a part of that transition.
Been registered L for a long time and just decided that I wanted to get involved. The state of our country and of our state are in great peril and I do not want to see us fall. You cannot expect change if you are not make a move.
Always labeled as libertarian just got sick of trying in GOP