Camping in Waltham
Thanks to everyone who attended this weekend's New England Code Camp 7 - "Deer in Headlights!" We had a fantastic time at the Microsoft offices in Waltham and had an estimated crowd (people kept coming in through the day) of 250 on Saturday and 220 on Sunday.
Thanks to Cedric and Yvonne for staffing the registration and helping to field the random "things" that always come up at a Code Camp.
Surprisingly, very few shenanigans occurred on Sunday (April Fools Day) save my lame posting of fake sessions outside one of the chat rooms. Unfortunately, that was just too subtle for anyone to notice. Next time we just happen to hold Code Camp on April 1st, I'll take full advantage!
I'd like to extend very large thanks to our speakers - volunteers of time and skills without whom community events like Code Camps would not be possible:
- Andy Novick
- Bob Goodearl
- Bob Familiar
- Brian Berry
- Dan Krhla
- Dave Burke
- Desmond Nolan
- Don Sorcinelli
- Igor Moochnick
- Jason Haley
- Judy Carten
- Julie Lerman
- Mark Mullin
- Max Weber
- Nabil Benchekroun
- Phil Denoncourt
- Richard Hale Shaw
- Rob Daigneau
- Robert Holmes
- Robert Hope
- Robert Hurlbut
- Steve St. Jean
- Todd Mancini
- William Aboujaoude
Giving the over 40 sessions, we had a number of first-time speakers mixed in with the veterans of many events and conferences. I think Steve St. Jean was the most-prepared first-time speaker I've ever seen. Well done, everyone!
We're collecting links to all of the presentations which our speakers are able to host. Keep an eye on theDevCommunity.org site for links over the next week or so.
Slides from my talks (and Bob Familiar's) can be found here.
We had tons of magazines out for the taking, along with bags, pens, and discount vouchers. For raffles, we had contributed software, clothing, and a bunch of books, hats, and mugs I pulled from my "DE Treasure Trove". The end results of which were happy attendees and a happy wife who has fewer boxes of stuff to deal with at our home.
I'd like to call out special thanks to two people who contributed food and drink beyond what I was able to provide.
First, thanks to Jason Haley (pictured at left) for coordinating a campaign to raise funds from various user groups for coffee and doughnuts on Saturday morning (including my favorite, the french cruller.) Along with the food, Jason produced a summary list of the region's user groups, their sites and meeting times. We put copies of these lists next to the coffee & doughnuts to help raise awareness.
Jason also wins the award for traveling farthest for Camp (from Seattle!)
Second, a thank you to the Richard Hale Shaw Group for the humorous (and tasty) contribution of Kool-Aid for each day's consumption! At right is a picture of us raising a sugary toast together. Richard also volunteered his expertise to run three well-attended sessions on Sunday.
I probably gained a few pounds from Saturday alone.
Saturday Night Geek Event
A group of speakers and attendees meandered over to the Waltham Westin hotel's lounge for some pretty good food and drink. Final Four basketball was on the televisions, but nobody seemed interested as the outrageous stories flew.
Todd Mancini piqued my curiosity by ordering a Campari and soda. Having never heard of this Campari thing (which looks like the Kool-Aid we had earlier in the day,) I made the mistake of actually ordering one. Not to be repeated.
Dave Burke (of the "Vermont Contingent") has a nice writeup with some rather kind words about the Camp and the evening's gathering. I think he cut me some slack since I'm a former Vermonter. 🙂
Summary and Next Time...
We received lots of great feedback about the event and it seems people were pleased with the weekend. I'm still going through the evaluations, but it looks like the speakers did a fantastic job of satisfying the audience and I've received some interesting new ideas to make the next Camp even better.
So stay tuned later over the summer for the dates of Code Camp 8! We're going to need a new subtitle, so get thinking...
Thanks again to everyone!