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Special Events

We have several fun and meaningful activities planned for you throughout the week!

Some require a ticket or RSVP. You can add these options to your registration, along with lunches, workshops, and field trips, in the AFE Portal. Click here for directions on adding tickets or RSVP to your registration

Monday, Dec 4

Regency Foyer and Terrace, 5 to 7pm
Join us to meet and socialize with conference attendees and pick up your registration materials. Poster presenters, you can set up during this time as well. A no-host bar will be available.

Tuesday, Dec 5

8:00am to 8:30am, Monterey Ballroom
The Esselen Tribe of Monterey County is planning a special opening ceremony for the congress with elders and members from many local tribes participating. Please arrive on time if you plan to attend.

12:00pm to 4:00pm, Regency Foyer
We are very excited to feature members and vendors of several local tribes to share information, art, and culture throughout the afternoon on Tuesday.

5:30pm to 7:00pm, 1st Floor Conference Center
Join Maura O’Connor, author of “Ignition: Lighting Fires in a Burning World” in a book signing, Tuesday Dec 5, 5:30-6:00pm on the 1st floor of the conference center.
Books will be available for purchase at the signing. They make great gifts for your fire-loving friends! Maura will kick off the FUSEE Info Meeting starting at 6:00pm in Spyglass I on the 1st floor conference center. Come meet Board members and learn about FUSEE’s exciting programs and projects in 2024.

6:00pm to 8:00pm, Bar at Sea Root (near Hyatt Lobby)
Join us for happy hour to connect with Prescribed Burn Association (PBA) members and enthusiasts. This will be a fun and informal opportunity to meet and learn about
other PBAs across the country.

8:00pm to 11:00pm, Monterey Ballroom
Don’t miss the 1st ever AFE Dance Party, being hosted and DJ’d by several of your AFE friends!

Wednesday, Dec 6

AFE Community and Member Lunch
11:45am-12:45pm, Regency Ballroom
The AFE Membership and Engagement Committee invites you to join us for lunch. Pick up your pre-purchased boxed lunch in the exhibit hall or bring your own. Each table will be staffed by leaders of different AFE committees–Journal, Diversity Equity and Inclusion, Mentoring, and more. Besides catching up with old friends and making new ones, this is also an opportunity to learn more about the inner workings of AFE and perhaps share ideas for how to make the organization even better.

11:45am-12:45pm, Monterey Ballroom
The Student Association for Fire Ecology and FireGeneration Collaborative are hosting a lunch to bring together students and early career professionals. Come hear from the leadership of both groups! If you are a student that RSVP’d for free lunch, you will pick it up outside Monterey Ballroom before the meeting begins.

12:45pm-2:15pm, Monterey Ballroom
Join us to explore career options, connect with experts across a range of career stages and professions, and gain exposure to programs, fellowships, and other resources that are geared toward the new generation of fire professionals.

Celebration of Life for Jan van Wagtendonk
6:00pm to 7:30pm, Regency Foyer and Terrace
Friends, family, and colleagues will gather to celebrate the life and career of Jan van Wagtendonk. We will share memories and reflections of Jan and his career, and have time to enjoy each other’s company with appetizers and a no-host bar.

Thursday, Dec 7

AFE Awards Luncheon
12:00pm-2:00pm, Monterey Ballroom
The awards luncheon will honor AFE’s 2022 and 2023 award winners. We will be recognizing lifetime achievement awards, early career, students, and more! If you have not already purchased a ticket, you can check at registration to see if we have any available. 

Closing Ceremony and Bonfire, RSVP required
Asilomar Conference Grounds
6:00pm for Pre-purchased dinner tickets
7:00pm Ceremony and Bonfire
The Esselen Tribe of Monterey County is planning a closing ceremony on Thursday evening at Asilomar Conference Grounds, in Pacific Grove, at what is known to tribal communities as Achastawhich. The location is about 5 miles from the Hyatt, and we will help coordinate carpools to and from the location.

There will be a talking stick ceremony with tribal elders, members of local and neighboring tribes, and congress attendees. This ceremony will reflect on the congress and provide a space for connection, healing, and learning. There will be a traditional ceremonial fire, smudging, blessings, and a chance to share stories around the fire. All walks of life are welcome.

It is free to attend but RSVP is required as space is limited. The ceremony will begin at 7pm. If you bought a dinner ticket for the Asilomar Dining Hall, please plan to arrive at 6pm.