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Day of DotNetNuke, a weekend in review

By Rich Campbell

So Dang and I headed off to Tampa Florida on Thursday to get ready for the Day of DNN event, as well as teach a few of our DotNetNuke Workshops. We flew down Thursday morning, picked up our rental car (after an upgrade to a full size that worked out well, more on that later). Once we made our way over to the hotel we checked in and began working on our presentations for Saturday, there’s nothing like leaving it to the last minute right? When we checked in we picked up two packages, one with the materials for our workshops on Friday/Sunday, and one from Wrox with three freshly printed copies of my new book, the first copies I’d actually seen in print so I was pretty excited about that.

Thursday evening we headed down to the manager’s social, free drinks and snacks. We hung out there working on our sessions until we met up with some fellow DNN’rs and hung out with them for a few hours, BSing, and providing product support the whole time! :)

Friday morning we got up and about to deliver our DotNetNuke Essentials workshop. We had a good turnout, despite a minor bit of confusion about the location of our training. Reminder, put your locations online, don’t assume that people will read the emails you send them telling them where to go. ;) The class went well, and we followed that up with a speakers and volunteers social later that evening as part of Day of DNN. We had a good time meeting new faces, and catching up with old friends from past conferences. Here’s a photo of me and Strohl having a little tweet off competition.

We ended up heading off from the social with Joe Brinkman from DNN Corp, Ryan Arrow (+wife and intern) from www.ArrowNuke.com, and Paul Scarlett www.Tressleworks.ca around 10pm and had dinner out at Bahama Breeze. Even at 10pm on a Friday night the place was packed, though we didn’t have to wait too long for a table.

Saturday morning started out early. I was going to be presenting my first session at 8:30am, the first slot after the keynote, so we headed over to the Tampa Microsoft offices around 7am. We had a full load of guys with us, providing taxi services to Mitchel Sellers, Paul Scarlett and Antony Slater. We got into the building, registered for the event and started to setup our vendor table for the event. We didn’t bring our full booth setup (video from that setup) that we had an OpenForce last year, but we did bring a sign and some brochures for the event.

My sessions went well, I gave out all three of the books I received, one at each of the sessions. I got to do my first book signing, and thanks for the photo Don! I’ll have my session materials posted here on the website early next week. Dang’s sessions went great as well, so much that the last one ran long and delayed the raffle at the end of the day. We stuck around to see if we won anything, nothing to be had, but we did have a good time watching everyone else win the prizes. Especially the guy on the motorcycle who won a Zune from K-Force, and then won a 32” LCD TV. I don’t think he took that one home with him that night.

I managed to sit down with Joe Brinkman from the DNN Corp during the final sessions for Day of DNN and got an interview for the latest (Show#9) DNNVoice podcast. Check it out if you get a chance. Here’s a picture Paul took of me and Joe.

Saturday night we had the event social, DNN After Dark at the Green Iguana. It was another great evening of socializing with members of the DNN community. We hauled ourselves out of there around midnight, only because we had to teach a workshop on Sunday. There was still a party going on when we left. Sunday’s workshop went very well, lots of great questions and discussions about DNN. So much so that we ran long, and are finishing up our final portion of the class with a webinar today.

After our session on Sunday Dang and I headed back to the airport to begin our journey home to St. Louis. For some reason we didn’t get direct flights for either leg of our trip, so we flew home through Washington DC Sunday night, the flights weren’t horrible, but nothing special by any means. We landed in St. Louis around 11:30pm.

Overall Summary of the Event: Will Strohl and his pack of merry men (volunteers) did an great job with this event. The Day of DNN event was EXCELLENT, best bang for the buck (it was free, but worth a hefty price), and a lot of people even mentioned that they thought it was better than attending OpenForce. I don’t know if I can go that far, OpenForce is a whole experience in itself, but I must say, if you can’t swing the $$$ to go to Vegas in November be sure to check out when the next Day of DNN event is. I’ll hopefully be there, wherever and whenever it is.

The DotNetNuke Community is excellent, I thoroughly enjoy the time I get to spend talking to everyone I meet at these events (OpenForce, Tulsa Tech Fest, Day of DNN). I don’t know what it is about DNN, but it attracts the most interesting people and generates some excellent conversations, and excellent parties!

I have some photos from the event which I’ll get posted tonight in the Day of DNN flickr set.

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