Our featured events are the tentpoles of the convention, around which our Program and Exhibits are woven. The largest – the Hugo Awards Ceremony on Sunday night – is expected to draw up to 2,000 people, but don’t worry, there will be room for everyone in the Hyatt’s Grand Ballroom!

Grand Ballroom at the Hyatt Regency

And now an introduction to our major events. See also the Convention Highlights page.

Opening Ceremonies

Thursday 8:00 p.m., Grand Ballroom

Welcome to the convention!  Opening Ceremonies mark the official start of Chicon 8. Our toastmasters, Charlie Jane Anders and Annalee Newitz, host this first chance for the membership to meet the Guests of Honor and Featured Guests, to hear from the chairman and committee, and to get an overview of the convention. We will also be revealing this year’s designs for the Hugo Award trophy base and the Lodestar Award for Best Young Adult Book.

CoNZealand 2020 Tooooo!

Feel like you missed the in-person experience of CoNZealand? Join the CoNZealand team in Grand Ballroom A and B on Friday afternoon from 1 p.m. to 9 p.m. for a taste of the in-person convention that should have been.

CoNZealand 2020 Tooooo will include activities, panels, exhibits, and award winners. 8 hours, 1 room; a Worldcon in miniature!

Friday Night Theatre

Never have enough time for live theatre? Does local live theatre fail to provide you with great science fiction, fantasy, or horror productions? Now you can get satisfy both questions in one place: Chicon 8’s Friday Night Theatre.

Moebius Theatre

Friday 6:00 p.m. – 7:00 p.m. Grand Ballroom D

Moebius Theatre is a Chicago-area acting/writing troupe with no permanent home, specializing in science fiction-oriented theatre, and often leaning toward the comedic. For Chicon 8, they will be performing two new plays based on “De Profundis” (also known as “The Visitor”), by Henry Kuttner and C. L. Moore, and “Help! I Am Doctor Morris Goldpepper,” by Avram Davidson. (See the Theatre page for more details).

Improvised Star Trek

Friday 9:00 p.m. – 10:00 p.m. Grand Ballroom D

Need a new Star Trek Episode?  Come experience one being created right before your eyes.  What will it be about?  No one knows until it begins. Improvised Star Trek explores strange new worlds of comedy within the universe of Star Trek, following the adventures of the USS Sisyphus. Started as a live show in 2009, Improvised Star Trek later expanded to include 226 podcast episodes. (See the Theatre page for more details).

The Chicon 8 Masquerade

Saturday 8:00 p.m., Grand Ballroom

Highlights from the Dublin 2019 Worldcon (c) Locus Magazine
The Game of Pawns, The Kelly Freas Fashion Parade, Best in Show Presentation: From the Dark (by Dave Clark)

The Worldcon Masquerade has always been a premier event in the costumers’ calendar year and we expect yet another amazing year on stage. Costumers will have the opportunity to creatively present their designs and workmanship to the judges and audience.

The Masquerade will be held on Saturday, September 3, 2022 in the evening and we’re happy to have the Chicagoland Costumers’ Guild overseeing the event.


Chicon will host music throughout the day and evening, with concerts and more informal filk circles open to everyone, from fans who just like to sing to professionals. Covering filk, nerdcore, wizard rock, chip tunes, trad, Ren Faire, and many other styles, Chicon will have something for every musical taste. See our music page for more information about the Chicon Music performances and events.

The Hugo Award Ceremony

Sunday 8:00 p.m., Grand Ballroom

The premier event of any Worldcon is the presentation of the World Science Fiction Society’s Hugo Awards. The Hugo Awards honor the best of science fiction and fantasy of the previous year in literature, non-fiction, dramatic presentations, art, and fan-driven works.

Chicon 7 Hugo Award Winners, (c) Keith Stokes

For Chicon 8, the Hugo Awards Ceremony will be held the evening of Sunday, September 4, 2022. The evening will be hosted by our amazing toastmasters Annalee Newitz and Charlie Jane Anders.

Closing Ceremonies

Monday 2:30 p.m., Crystal B.

All good things must come to and end, and the Closing Ceremony will mark the official end of Chicon 8: The 80th World Science Fiction Convention.

A chance to get in a final word about the convention. A chance to thank the guests and the hard working volunteers without whom the convention couldn’t exist. And of course, a chance to thank all of you, the attendees and volunteers, for joining us in Chicago.

This also marks the official hand off to the 81st World Science Fiction Convention committee, who will be hosting the Worldcon in Chengdu, China in August, 2023!