This year’s Pennsylvania AFG Convention offers what Rich M. calls “a great opportunity.”

For newcomers, the weekend Convention is “a great opportunity to get a real good understanding of what Al-Anon really is,” the Convention chair said.

For those making a repeat visit, he said, “There’s a lot of recovery.”

“Change is the Key to Recovery” is the theme of the 46th annual Convention, held June 1-3 at Susquehanna University in Selinsgrove.

The Convention features speakers and workshops, fun and fellowship. Workshops are: Change is the Key to Recovery, Forgiveness is Freedom, The Power of Sponsorship, Expressing Recovery through Creativity, The Tools of Recovery, Detach with Love, Acceptance, the Beginning of Recovery, and an Alateen Informational Workshop.

Rich first came to Al-Anon about nine years ago in the Pittsburgh area. He attended his first Al-Anon weekend event in Greensburg, Pa. “It was awesome as far as I was concerned,” he said, “I was really impressed at how deeply people care about their recovery and the Al-Anon program.”

A few years later he attended his first Convention and has been returning ever since. For newcomers, he said, the Convention weekend “should provide a great incentive for them to keep coming back.”

The campus “is absolutely gorgeous and the facility is beautiful,” he said, adding, “The food has always been excellent and the dormitory accommodations are very comfortable.” (Those attending are advised to bring their own pillow and an extra blanket.) “Once settled in, there’s no need to leave the university if you don’t want to,” he said.

The Convention also offers participants the opportunity to connect with other Al-Anon family members. Since attending his first Assembly in Harrisburg as a GR, Rich said, “I’ve met so many wonderful people and I’ve heard many wonderful stories of recovery and hope. Being last year’s Convention co-chair and this year’s chair, I’ve learned the real value of service, teamwork, and effective communications, much to the credit of Ruth H., last year’s Convention chair.”

This year’s event has not been without its challenges. The 2018 Al-Anon International Convention on July 6-8 in Baltimore, Md., is expected to pull attendance from the Convention. “We’ll just have to accept that fact and realize that it’s out of our control and move forward,” he said.

The Pennsylvania AFG Convention should prove to be a weekend of sharing, recovery, and fellowship. “It’s very inexpensive,” Rich said. For those sharing a room, the per-person cost, with four meals, is $135.

The weekend includes a basket raffle, a 50-50 drawing, and a popular dance with a DJ Saturday night. Those attending are asked to consider donating a basket from their group or district; proceeds help support the PA Assembly and World Service Organization.

“There are good speakers, good workshops, and a lot of recovery,” Rich said. “There’s something in it for every for everybody.”

More information and registration is available by visiting the Convention Online Registration page; emailing: penna.alanon.convention@gmail.com; or calling 717-745-5204. The deadline for registration is Thursday, May 24.