Have you ever attended an AA International convention? They take place every five years and alternate between the East and West coasts, and between the United States and Canada. The dates are always the same July 2 to 5. Next summer it will take place in Atlanta, Georgia July 2 to 5 2015.
I attended my first International ten years ago in Toronto and was blown away. You will hear this from everyone who has been to one but it's true: it's an extraordinary experience to see an entire city taken over by recovering people. And we do take over the entire city: the streets, stores, restaurants, public transportation, museums and parks. And the bars. Yes, the conference cities even prepare their pubs and bars to be welcoming and accommodating. There are signs of welcome and many jokes and always special non-alcoholic drinks.
Five years ago we went to San Antonio and again, an extraordinary experience of meetings, talks, showcases, special topic forums and shopping. Yes, even recovery shopping extravaganza's. Twelve-step brings out the top speakers and podium super-stars (tho we never admit to super-star status --we must maintain at least a semblance of humility.) But it's true. You will hear amazing presenters and super stories of recovery.
And there is something for everyone. While the International producer is AA there is also plenty of support and programming from Alanon and NA, OA, DA etc. So friends and family are very welcome.
A tip I learned ten years ago: register early. Registration will stay open thru the conference but hotel rooms go fast. If you want a room near the convention center and big event sites you must book your room now. Right now.
Here is the link to the AA International main site. Go here to register and after you have registered you'll have a number to begin your hotel search.
This is kind of a Mecca situation. If you are in recovery you should experience an International conference at least once. But once you go you will always want to go again. Alas--what a luxury problem.