This weekend we hosted WordCamp Vancouver at the Museum of Vancouver. This is my second time co-organizing a WordCamp and it was a lot of fun to put together.
My company builds, develops and designs websites using the WordPress platform and by organizing these events, we have a way to give back to the community. Now although “Camps” in the social media realm usually mean unconferences, the WordCamp model hasn’t usually operated that way. We hosted a structured one-day conference all focused on WordPress operations and development — and it was a blast.
My co-organizer, Duane Storey, published the following on his blog:
There were a bunch of highlights for me throughout the weekend:
1) A couple of the sponsors came up afterwards, excited about the exposure they got and the contacts they made during the event. As an organizer, itâ€™s great to hear that your sponsors found real value in their sponsorship
2) A couple people came up to me and said they had initial misgivings about the event, but wanted to show up anyways. Everyone I talked to like that seemed to have been won over, learning something new during the conferences, or interacting with new people at the social
3) Quite a few people commented that the were surprised how much they got for their ticket. Thanks to sponsorship, we were able to provide day-long coffee, pop, muffins, cookies, a full Michi Sushi and sandwich lunch, a day long conference with 11 speakers, and a fully paid for social event in Granville Island. Pretty good value if you ask me.
4) Out of towners. Quite a few people were from out of town. A few people were from Seattle, at least one person from the Okanagan, two people from the Portland area, and my personal favourite, the guy who flew out from Malta (nearly 24 hours of traveling) to be at WordCamp Vancouver.
Those were highlights for me as well. I enjoyed meeting people from Vancouver, Portland, and Kelowna as well as hearing the feedback about the speakers, the quality of the sessions, and the gorgeous venue. There were bloggers, coders, business owners, designers and others from various professions all keen on talking WordPress. Being that I work for myself from home, it was great to get out and mingle with my industry peers.
It was really a pleasure to put together this WordCamp and to get help from volunteers including Justin Carlson (who took video of all sessions) and Mariska Richters who made sure we got our Ethical Bean coffee. My co-organizers were Duane, Dale, Tyler, John Biehler, Kulpreet, and my husband & business partner John Bollwitt.
Please feel free to contact WordCamp Vancouver should you have any feedback or suggestions for next time.