The Capital of Texas Conference had its beginnings in April 2012. A discussion had come up at the Board Meeting of the Hill Country Intergroup asking the question: “Why in the world does Austin not have its own AA Conference?” That has been asked many times over the years. Well, Intergroup decided to take it one step further and launched an informal investigation into the feasibility of starting a new conference. The result was: “it was possible, yet very difficult.” Amongst many hurdles was the issue of seed money. The men and women of that board decided to have faith in a small number of dedicated AA members and faith that this community and the state of Texas would support such a conference. Hill Country Intergroup supplied the necessary seed money to put the dream into action! With much hard work by many individuals and home groups, The Capital of Texas Conference was able to satisfy its commitment to Hill Country Intergroup after the 1st Annual Conference and in the spirit of Tradition 7, is now a self-supporting entity. The Capital of Texas Conference was conceived, and still conducts itself according to AA’s Traditions, Concepts, recommended guidelines, and singleness of purpose. The first annual Capital of Texas Conference was held August 15-17, 2014 after over two years of planning, organizing, and hard work. The conference was an overwhelming success confirming what many people had predicted: That the Central Texas Area was, indeed, in need of, and could support this conference.
One of the most astounding elements that have been produced in the first couple years of the conference is the spirit of unity and cooperation between several other entities. Of course, the event would not be here without the help of the Hill Country Intergroup. It was also discovered early in 2013 that the conference would fall on the 3rd Saturday of August, creating a possible conflict with a long standing monthly tradition of Austin Citywide. Instead of competition, the two entities showed what the spirit of AA is all about and The Capital of Texas Conference (CTC) played host to Citywide in August for 2014 and 2015. Both Citywide and CTC maintained their autonomy and brought an environment of recovery and fellowship to the community that was electric! [starting in 2016, CTC will be held on the 2nd Saturday of the month in August] CTC has also had the opportunity and fortune to share this same kind of cooperation with other groups such as TXCSYPAA 35 Host Committee and the 70th Annual Texas State Convention. Where these two regional rotating conferences have landed here in Austin within a few months of August, the community has demonstrated time and again that multiple conferences can be supported within a couple months of one another. And that committed members of AA, working on the committees, can share in the vision and primary purpose of “carrying the message to the alcoholic who still suffers.”
At CTC, we are also fortunate enough to have the participation of Al-Anon Family Groups at the conference. We are continually amazed by the devotion of their members to the personal and community recovery effort. Al-Anon has been involved from the beginning in planning and organizing their own workshops, meetings, and family speakers at the conference every year. The Al-Anon participation has been an imperative aspect of the conference – reminding all of us that Alcoholism is a family disease and a real opportunity for family recovery.
There are so many others to thank for their participation and support: conference volunteers, musicians, entertainers, artists, workshop facilitators, speakers, fundraiser attendees, hospitality room host groups, and many more. This is conference has truly been built on the spirit of service – An event for the community, by the community. Most of all, none of this would be possible without the participation and support of the AA / Al-Anon community as a whole. We, at The Capital of Texas Conference, know that the success of the conference is a direct reflection of the fervor that this community has for recovery. The Capital of Texas Committee wishes to say “Thank You!!” to everyone that has supported this event and to those of you who are attending for the first time this year.
Thank you to everyone that has supported and attended the first 4 years of this conference. We look forward to seeing you in 2018 for the 5th Annual Capital of Texas Conference, August 10-12!