East Kingdom Seneschal

How to submit a bid for Pennsic War Autocrat

The Crowns of the East Kingdom and Middle Kingdom select Pennsic War Mayor/Autocrats for the Pennsic Wars that they will be hosting. The selection process starts January 1 TWO YEARS in advance of the Hosting Kingdom's year.

The East Kingdom hosts Pennsic during even-numbered years (e.g., 2014, 2016), for odd-numbered Pennsic Wars (PW43, PW45, etc.). The Middle Kingdom hosts Pennsic during odd-numbered years (e.g., 2015, 2017), for even-numbered Pennsic Wars (PW44, PW46, etc.).

For example: for Pennsic 45 (held in 2016), the East Kingdom Seneschal called for bids beginning January 1, 2014. The bid process ended on May 1, 2014, and Royalty selected the Mayor by July 1, 2014.

The goal is to select from a qualified candidate pool, the best person for the position of Pennsic Mayor, regardless of the person's Kingdom of residence.

The Bid Process

In the Administrative Policies of the Pennsic War, Section C - The bid process states that "... Potential autocrats may request a bid packet from one of the three Kingdom Seneschals. The bid packet will include minimum bid requirements, submission deadlines, and budget actuals from previous Pennsics to assist bidders in developing a preliminary budget. The announcement calling for bids will be published in all three Kingdoms' newsletters four months prior to the bid deadline...."

Please consider this on-line document, and its related links to be the Bid Packet. If you would like a hard copy of this packet sent to you, please contact the appropriate Kingdom Seneschal and write to that person. Email requests of the described documents may also be sent upon request.

Before you begin you must be familiar with the following documents:

You might also want to look at "So, you want to be the Mayor of Pennsic?" While it is not an official document of Pennsic of the SCA, it is a useful resource from a former Mayor of Pennsic War and will give you an in-depth list of questions you must ask yourself to see if you are ready to try to take on the management of the largest SCA event.

As stated before, the Crowns of the Hosting Kingdom appoint the Mayors. This is done upon recommendation of the Seneschals of the East, Middle and Æthelmearc,

The Bid deadline is May 1 of any year. The Seneschals have 30 days to review the bids received and advise Their Majesties. Their Majesties have until July 1 to make a decision.

Your bid must contain the following, at a minimum:
[These requirements are from the Administrative Documents which govern how Pennsic War is administered.]

  1. SCA and modern name and contact information for the following:
    • Autocrat (Mayor)
    • Emergency Deputy
    • Key department heads,
    with descriptions of previous Pennsic staff experience and/or other relevant experience
  2. Resume (SCA and modern) of autocrat, including previous Pennsic staff experience and/or other relevant experience
  3. Statement of why you wish to organize Pennsic and what qualifications you bring to the project.
  4. Letters of intent from each key department head confirming their agreement to be on the autocrat's staff in that position.
  5. A draft preliminary budget, including proposed fee schedule, projected attendance, estimated gross revenue, estimated expenses, and any budget areas that are expected to change significantly (due to special projects, anniversary years, etc.). The hosting Kingdom Seneschal will help by providing budget actuals and non-cash asset inventories from previous Pennsics.
  6. Any new projects, activities, or changes in procedures/operations proposed for the war.

This may sound daunting, but let's explore each item.

  1. This is about you and your emergency deputy and any confirmed division or department heads you have.
    It is understood that it is difficult to ask over 100 people to commit to an event almost three years in advance. However for yourself and the person who will have to take over for you in an emergency it is needed. You and he/she must be willing to commit to this. Full information must be tendered as this will be used to create warrants, should you be successful in your bid.
    Please see below for more information about your Division and Department heads.

  2. Tell us who you are and what you have done in the SCA and in the Modern World.

  3. Yes... WHY? Why do you want to devote your life to this project?
    There is no right or wrong answer to this question, however writing "I think it would be really cool to ride around in a golf cart and tell people what to do", may not be your best choice of response.

  4. This is required because in the past people often found out they were on someone's bid and had not been asked if they were willing to be. This eliminates the surprise factor. It also eliminates a bidder from "just putting names down" to make their bids look good.

    The letter needs only contain the person's willingness to work for the bidder. It may be as simple as:
    "I [Name of person], agree to work for [Name of the Bidder] in any capacity needed, should [Name of Bidder] be successful in becoming the Autocrat/Mayor of Pennsic [insert Pennsic number].
    [Signed - Or - Email confirmation with full headers]

  5. The Budget for Pennsic War is formidable. At last look it was over $250,000.00. You, as Mayor, would be responsible for dealing with all aspects of the budget. You must work with the Pennsic Financial Committee. You must work with the Pennsic Exchequer. You must work with Division and Department heads to ensure the estimated expenses of each area are met. Items to help you:
    • The Pennsic Financial Policy. You must be familiar with this document and be willing to follow it to the letter.
    • As required by the Admin Policies, you must submit a sample budget with your bid. Here is a scaled down version of the Pennsic 35 Budget (Excel file).

    Copies of previous actual budgets for Pennsic Wars [missing files??]

    Please note that this is the approved layout of the budget used for the last 3 years and for the foreseeable future. As you can see it is extensive. If you have questions or need help in creating a sample budget, Viscount Edward Zifran of Gendy, has assisted previous and future Mayors in creating and maintaining their budgets. Email him at

  6. Here is where you are able to talk about any new concepts or plans you might have for "your war". This is where you may further explain why you feel you would be the right person for this position.

Submitting the Bid

Once you have created and assembled the information required for your bid you must submit it to:

Any bid that does not have the requisite material will be returned as incomplete and will not be considered in the review process. If there is time remaining, you may be allowed to resubmit before the deadline [i.e. - you submit your incomplete bid in February, there might be time to resubmit before the deadline of May 1. However if you submit May 1, and it is incomplete, there would be no time to resubmit].

On behalf of the Kingdom Seneschals' Group, I thank you for your interest in becoming the Mayor of Pennsic War.

Viscount Edward Zifran of Gendy

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