Starting Friday October 2, 2015, a two-day WASHCon (Washington Area Secular Humanists) “Freethought Renaissance” conference was held at the Lynchburg Holiday Inn–Downtown. Humanists gathered to advocate for progressive values, support the development and advancement of humanist thought, support the separation of government and religion, encourage rational thought and scientific inquiry, and provide a safe environment where humanists, other non-theists and those who are open to the values of humanism can work together to move society forward with a firm reliance on reason and humanity.

WHO: Featured speakers for the event were:

– John Davidson—well known for hosting That’s Incredible, The New Hollywood Squares, One Hundred Thousand Dollar Pyramid, and The Tonight Show.
– Margaret Downey—event MC and founder of the Freethought Society (www.ftsociety.org/).
– Justus Cade—graduate of Liberty University and member of Washington Area Secular Humanists.
– Tom Flynn—Executive Director of the Council for Secular Humanists (www.secularhumanism.org).
– UnitedCoR’s Executive Director—Executive Director of the United Coalition of Reason (www.unitedcor.org).
– Linda LaScola—author and co-founder of The Clergy Project (www.clergyproject.org).
– Ron Lindsay—President and CEO of the Center for Inquiry (www.centerforinquiry.net).
– Julien Musolino—author and scholar from Rutgers University.
– Dr. Andy Thomson—psychiatrist and author.

WHERE: Lynchburg Downtown Holiday Inn, 601 Main Street, Lynchburg, VA 24505, (434) 528-2500.

WHEN: Friday, October 2nd from 5:30pm through Saturday, October 3rd at 10:00pm.

WHY: The conference was about realizing that our society, the world and our universe is a bigger, brighter and a more amazing place than ever imagined when viewed through the lens of humanism and non-theism. The conference provides an opportunity for non-believers to stand together and gives us a public voice, allowing us to reach out and connect with even more people who share our philosophy, and helps us continue the journey of building a strong and vibrant humanist community. When we discover that we’re not alone, we are encouraged to enthusiastically live lives in a way that reflects our values. What makes life for humanists, atheists and other non-believers so exciting is the infinite discoveries, unbounded by supernatural beliefs, that await to be revealed through reason, logic and open-minded curiosity.