My First Conference: EVO ’10

by Jessica on July 2, 2010

in Events

Early last week, I was fortunate enough to attend the EVO Conference at The Canyons Resort in Park City, Utah. I had heard some buzzing about it on the internet in the previous weeks, but hadn’t put any thought into actually attending due to finances and, well, leaving my family. The stars aligned just so, however, and I was able to go to my first blogging and social media conference.

I cannot emphasize enough how much social media has changed my life for the better. Just as we were embarking on the biggest adventure of our lives, I decided to get on Twitter and start this blog. I wanted to chronicle our move and the ways in which we have changed individually and as a family over the years. I had no idea that through these forums I would make lifelong friends, cry on virtual shoulders, and feel a community bound in arms around me when I felt (and was in life) the most alone.

Attending this conference only solidified these feelings. Around three hundred people attended and of those some of the most passionate and inspiring speakers I have ever seen. It was an intimate group of bloggers and social media gurus, so much so that it was conducive to actually getting around to speaking to almost everyone.  I found some old friends and some beautiful fast friends, and times that I could never duplicate no matter how hard I try.

(Video of our ZipRide courtesy of Dawn )

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Heather, Heather’s Mom, Dawn, Me, Victoria, and Leslie

I even learned a lot.  The panelists were smart and motivating, willing and wanting to share everything they know as experts in their field.
Blogging happened to me by accident, more or less.  I wasn’t out to start a powerhouse business or get the most readers. I don’t do it for the “fame” or the “freebies”.  For me this was a way to express myself and has blossomed into something that I could never have predicted or expected.  This conference was the perfect venue for me to act as a sponge-it wasn’t overwhelming, there weren’t business cards flying around like snow. I was able to attend and digest all that I wanted and needed to-and I need a lot, being green behind the ears.  And to no surprise, the main message that I heard over and over was to be authenticBe inspiredBe REAL.

PhotobucketThe gondola ride to the Photography workshop.  The altitude sickness was the only downside to beautiful Utah. Well, that and the lack of readily available wine.

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Me and the glorious Room704 girls.

I had the most fantastic roomie around.  I was a little nervous about sharing a room or a bed with someone I don’t know, but Kristin (of Dine and Dish) was so great, I was actually wishing we had had more time to talk. I also got to spend a couple of evenings with some of my favorite bloggers and their babies- which was nice on all counts, as well as making me miss my own babies even more.

I left the conference fulfilled and inspired, and very grateful to Rachel, Jyl. and my sponsor Melaleuca, and looking forward to next year at Evo ’11.

I don’t know where blogging will take me, but I love where we’ve gone so far.  I accredit social media to be one of the number one ways that helped me get acclimated to this city in this new life of ours, and for helping me find something that allows me to be social in a very creative way.  I can’t wait to meet all of the rest of my friends at BlogHer ’10 in August!

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{ 11 comments… read them below or add one }

DaDa Rocks! July 2, 2010 at 2:17 am

It was awesome getting to hang a bit outside the city. It was really great chatting with you. Look forward to more adventures in blogging with you soon.

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jen July 2, 2010 at 2:21 am

It was so great to meet you last weekend! I can't wait to see you in NYC.

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Abra July 2, 2010 at 2:41 am

Thanks for sharing about the conference– I am so glad you were able to go and meet so many neat bloggers. I love the blogging world, I just wish I could meet more of the people behind the words! (Like you, of course!)

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Jyl Johnson Pattee July 2, 2010 at 4:47 am

Beautiful pics and awesome post. So glad you had such a great time at evo'10! Hope to see you back next year :).

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Heather Whaling July 2, 2010 at 3:28 pm

Hey lady! I'm SO glad we met in the elevator … yay for new #EVOConf friends! Next time I come to NY/NJ, we'll have to get together. Plus, I'd love to meet your adorable kids! :)

Heather
@prTini

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Rachael July 2, 2010 at 3:40 pm

So glad you were able to pull it off! I'll see you at BlogHer in August! As for the wine – I wish I would have known what room you were in! We ended up with so much extra I could have started a side business! :D

Great pics!

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Park City July 2, 2010 at 9:14 pm

That stinks you got altitude sickness, but I'm glad you loved Park City! Come back anytime!

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Aimee Greeblemonkey July 3, 2010 at 2:18 am

Hey, it's my new BFF, whose name I actually remember now! ;) Thanks for the love. It was great meeting you too!

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dusty earth mother July 3, 2010 at 3:41 am

Yay, Jessica! So cool that you got to go. BlogHer is going to be my first conference (with way more than 300 people :-) Hope I can see you there!

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Nicole Feliciano July 6, 2010 at 4:21 am

So glad you loved it. The community is awesome and you are a vital part of it now.

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nycgirl0501 July 6, 2010 at 2:58 pm

What a wonderful experience! I know what you mean I also stumbled into blogging and still feel very new at it. I've gotten back so much more in the relationships I've formed with people that there are no words to describe it.

I look forward to meeting you at Blogher 10 :)

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