I’m excited to be attending the R-Squared conference in Telluride! I have been trying to write about my expectations for this conference but while I am excited, I also don’t have any expectations so I’m going to write about what I’m excited about.
This will be my first visit to Telluride and my first visit to Colorado altogether but I heard it’s very pretty. My good friend Andrea Davis is already there as I write this and her pictures on Facebook have been gorgeous. She is scouting the area for fun things to do, see, and experience while in that area so I’m excited about picking her brain when I get there. She usually finds some great things wherever she goes and I have to credit her for some of my most memorable conference experiences.
I have to admit that I wasn’t going to attend this conference at all. I wanted to stay in branch more this year and I already have a couple of conferences that I’m planning on attending. I was even about to pass up the scholarship opportunity for us Eurekans by InfoPeople! The problem is that there are going to be so many amazing people there who inspire just about all my work. This was my biggest inspiration to take this opportunity and submit my application. I thought about listing all of those people here who really inspired me to attend, but really, there are just way to many great people going. You can see who’s going by looking at the roster listed here-http://rsquaredconference.org/attendees
I’m really excited that there are going to be so few librarians presenting at R-Squared. One of the things that I’ve complained about before at conferences is that we tend to get locked in an echo chamber. When we write our blogs only other librarians read them, our friends on FB and Twitter are also librarians, and this doesn’t lend itself to a lot of outside influence or inspiration. I’m hoping that the presenters at this conference will infuse our profession with some outside knowledge, skills, and inspiration.
I think that having to choose an entire experience that we immerse ourselves in throughout the conference is an excellent way to gain a greater depth and breadth of knowledge. I personally chose the Creative Spaces Experience because we have a need to creatively enhance the space in my library. I also have some experience from a library construction project and I learned more about libraries during that then I ever did anywhere else.
I’m not sure if many people are aware but there a bunch of rumors of announcements happening throughout R-Squared. I’ve only heard whispers and rumors of most of them, but the one that I do know about is the development of a Library PAC! This is a huge development put together by John Chrastka and there will be a fantastic official Launch Party on Tuesday Night. We’ll see what else is in store from all the other amazing people there.
Ok, yes, for most conferences I often find that socializing with other librarians is one of the most beneficial parts of my conference experience. At the networking events and afterparties I always learn so much from other people’s experience at a conference, but also I get to talk directly to the people who inspire me who tell me all the new great things they’re working on right now! We get to come together and celebrate working in the best profession on the planet. I’ve also made professional friendships and met and been mentored by people who are doing amazing things. Plus, I like to dance. For this conference I had the opportunity to help organize the R-Squared Afterparty on Monday which is going to be epic. You get to pick your own music!
I do this at just about every conference but I wanted to give you a fair warning. I might come find you with my video camera and interview you for some of my short 1-2 minute conference videos. JP Porcaro and I do quite a few of these at conferences, but since I’m on my own for this one, I’m going to have get in front of the camera. I hope I live up to his standard! You can see our conference videos here.
I could probably write a bunch more about what I’m excited about but I think I’ll leave it at that and just be surprised by anything else that happens while I’m there. If you’re going, I hope to see you there!
PC Sweeney is Branch Manager at the East Palo Alto Library in the San Mateo County Library System and previous Eurekan! He Loves to meet new people and you can find him online here