Conference Registration and Acceptance FAQ

All-Star II is often oversubscribed, requiring many people, including long-standing and valued members of the community, to be on the wait list. If you are not accepted initially, take heart! Many people also get accepted from the wait list! The following answers to typical questions will help you understand the process and your chances to attend.

How does the wait list work?

If you are wait-listed, it means that you may get in if we have cancellations. We will (sorrowfully) notify you if you are wait-listed. As long as you don't cancel your application, we will notify you when a space arises that fits your family size. There is no definite "order" or "position in line" on the wait list, because the family filling the canceled applications must fit the spaces made available. We do considerable juggling to make things balance.

Why have we been wait-listed?

Most likely because of conference demographics. The chairs must balance many variables. For example the total number of children needs to be approximately 90 and each individual children's group must be approximately the same size.
This process of balancing is most likely what caused you to be waitlisted. Consequently, the wait list can include people who have been valuable and much-loved attendees in past years!

Does the conference accept new people?

All Star II has a policy of striving for 15% "New Shoalers". However, the definition of New Shoaler has varied from year to year, and is determined by the current chairs. It is generally interpreted to mean, "has never attended a Star Island conference as an adult." It is sometimes difficult to get your foot in the door on Star. If you are a New Shoaler, and don't get in this year, please try again next year!

If I was wait-listed last year, am I automatically accepted this year?

This is a common belief, but is in fact not quite true. Being "wait-listed" alone does not assure you preference for admission this year. If you have been formally wait-listed and never accepted you will be given special consideration. However even with special consideration acceptance cannot be automatic due to the many other factors involved. And of course you must still submit your application on time for the current year.

Is acceptance determined by a strict set of rules?

No. The chairs of All-Star II theoretically have complete discretion. The only guidelines the conference has chosen are those relating to 15% new shoalers, former chairpeople, staff, and consideration of formerly wait-listed applicants. Past chairs and their dependent children living at home are always accepted, if they apply on time. In addition, staff and their families are assured acceptance. Once those groups have been accepted, the emphasis focuses on adjusting the groups in the children's program.

What other factors are considered for acceptance besides balancing the children's program?

  • applications postmarked by March 10
  • geographic diversity
  • continuity for children who have been in the program for years
  • offers to help the conference with volunteer jobs
  • accepting and performing assigned volunteer jobs
  • parents who adequately supervise their own children and offer to help with others
  • individuals interested in giving of themselves to the whole community
  • people who do not isolate themselves within one segment of the community but integrate freely throughout
  • Unitarian Universalist or involvement in a UU congregation or organization

If someone is waitlisted, is it advisable to "lobby" the chairs for a special position on that list?

In general, that would be counterproductive. Chairs will work hard to be fair and accommodate any special situations or hardships of which they are made aware. Certainly you should share any important information so the chairs are more aware of a specific circumstance. However as chairs do work very hard to be fair, pressuring them in any way, or failing to show respect for the work that has taken place, is not advisable.


Can one have a special understanding with previous years' chairs about admission?

Chairs cannot promise admissions for any year other than their own. Admission is entirely the responsibility of the current chairs.

Are extended or related families preferred over unrelated families?

Each year's chairs establish their own priorities, but relatedness between families is not a prime consideration for most chairpeople. We do not favor the idea of ASII as a reunion opportunity for extended families, as the practice tends, over time, to work to the exclusion of others. ASII is intended to be a diverse and larger community.

Are partnered parents preferred over single parents?

Single parents and their children are fully as welcome as any other families. ASII also welcomes same-sex couples and their children.

If one takes a year off, does one receive priority for attendance the next year?

No. That is a policy practiced by some other conferences but is not a policy of AS II. It is, in any event, a nice thing to do as it allows some other family the joy you have experienced on Star!

If waitlisted, what are my chances of getting accepted?

Your chances are good but certainly not guaranteed. Many of the people wait-listed who do not withdraw are ultimately accepted.