One more thing to say about the "one day shorter". . . If you went to a regular SCA event, one that was held every year at the same place, an event of which you were very fond, and the autocrat said: "This year, folks, instead of shutting down at 10 pm, we need to clear the hall at 9 pm," would you ask for a refund percentage of your gate fee back because it was not what you got for your dollar last year (despite the fact that they haven't raise rates for years even though the event costs went up)? Would you complain that the event staff opened the doors at 9 am when they should have given you your extra hour by opening at 8 am? Would you complain that you were being ripped off by the event staff, the site owners, or some ubiquitous "They"?
Pennsic, like every other annually recurring event in the SCA changes. Sometime the changes are more noticeable than others. We are fortunate in that we have many returning staff on an annual basis. We remember what we did last year, over the last 10 years, and even 2-3 decades ago. We always end up changing something every year to cope with the needs of the site, the needs of the attendees, and the needs of the staff. We consider all needs. We discuss them. And then we make decisions. Perhaps, if you are really concerned you should begin working regularly on Pennsic staff and see it from the inside.
It may be that a future Mayor will add that extra day back in down the road, but that will only happen if we do not find (on August 4th of this year) a huge mess. What can you do to help? Carry your trash to an appropriate dumpster, do not leave it piled on the corners of roads (no matter what your neighbors do). Make sure your tent/furniture rental people are going to pick up that cushy stuff you ordered. And it you bought it at the local Goodwill, don't abandon it, take it home; if you aren't prepared to take it home, don't buy it in the first place. But not just your site needs to be clean when you leave.
Will you be you on the Battlefield/Rapier list/Archery range for that last War Point? Will you be on the Battlefield for for Closing Court? Carry a few haybales to the hay bale pile on the edge of the field. Even if you are not able to do heavy lifting, you can pick up some empty water jugs and walk them to the recycling bins. Don't leave your own trash lying on the ground, and clean up litter and help strike your kingdom, baronial, household pavilions leaving those spots as clean as you found them. Give us an hour or two of your time to move tables and chairs from the A&S tents to stacks in the Great Hall. If you are not able to do physical labor at the end of War, do some time earlier in the War sitting at a Point as a volunteer. Encourage your more physically capable friends to help as well.
The SCA runs on the chivalric virtues, the courtesy, and honor of all of us--lets remember that. The good of the group, not the good of any one small segment of the group. Pennsic runs on the goodwill of about 100 Pennsic staffers who work year round to make it so. Rather than complain about why it is not what you want it to be, come work with us to make it better each year than it was the year before.
If every single person did just one hour of public area clean up at Pennsic, we wouldn't have enough work to go around. Consider that.