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attending conferences

updated tue 18 jan 11


Zephyr Sherman on mon 17 jan 11

I am a Registered Nurse as well as a potter and attended a large nursing
conference (5000+ oncology nurses) many times before ever attending my 1st
NCECA. Things I learned over the years were-
-make up address labels with email to use on all the raffle tickets or info
request forms. Beats writing the same info over and over and over.....
-wear sneakers or whatever shoes are most comfortable. Blisters make the
rest of the conference a big pain.
-bring an extra bag so you have room for the goodies you both collect or
buy. Include some packing tape and a folded box in your suitcase so you
can send any books or paper home as parcel post (much cheaper than paying
overage for weight to the airlines). The square poster boxes are also
useful if you like to collect all the free posters in the vendors' room.
Many hotels have shipping services, if not there may be a post office near
-know what your local suppliers have before going shopping in the vendor
area. With shipping costs if might be cheaper to buy local and pay the
sales tax. Also you can look over equipment you might want to purchase
later and get spec info to take home. Might get a better deal elsewhere.
-find a local grocery store/market to buy fresh fruit, snacks, water, or
other beverages. Much cheaper than the convention center and more
selection. It may just be as matter of going around the block to pass by
one on the way to the convention center.
-wear a good backpack. The stuff gets heavy if you carry it around in
bags. I know some folks who plan on the time they go to the vendors' area
and bring a wheeled bag so they don't have to carry stuff.
-unless there is a compelling reason not to, stay at the main convention
hotel. It may cost more but you'll save time not having to wait for buses,
fewer taxi rides, and closer to the action in general. I do love staying
at the Clayart hotel when there is one and they have been close as well.
-take some small pots to show and trade. Don't know it there is going to
be a mug exchange this year but I also have traded with folks over the
-spend a few minutes the night before to plan the day. Have second choices
for presentations in case one is full or just not what you were expecting.
Buy lunch that day or bring snacks and splurge on dinner? Having some idea
will make the day go smoother and you have some idea where in the
convention center you need to be (they can be huge spaces).
-have fun. Catch up on sleep after you get home! Ybor City is a fun place
to go.

Marcey Sherman
Zephyr Pottery....1/2 way out Long Island.... foot+ snow on the
ground....not planning to go to Tampa for NCECA, even though it is my home