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Better Late Than Never… Wrap-Up of SharePoint Saturday Boston 2/27/10


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It has been an absolute whirlwind since a few weeks before the SharePoint Saturday Boston, and still is going on as such, not a bad thing mind you, what is it they say about idle hands? In any event, I am finally getting around to pushing out a blog post about this event… so here goes.

First off, I would like to extend thanks to Talbott Crowell and his wife, Pradeepa Siva, of ThirdM, and Chris Bowen of Microsoft for helping organize this event. I took on most of the duties for organizing this event up front, but, it was a team effort all of the way, securing the facility (Microsoft office in Waltham), securing speakers and sponsors, handling registration, and day of planning. They were a HUGE help, and also helped me maintain some semblance of sanity during the event.

Next – Mother Nature. Yes. You. After months of planning and tireless effort, you had to go and dump an entire [insert any large home improvement store here] of wrenches into our gears. Thanks. A week or so before the event, with well over 300 attendees, speakers, and sponsors registered, you had to drop in one heck of a week of weather across the entire eastern seaboard. Rain, snow, sleet, hail, flooding – you name it, Ms. Mother Nature played it. None-the-less, excluding speakers and sponsors who we had register the event to get an accurate count, we had well over 225 people attend. WELL OVER. Minus the 29 speakers and associated entourages, the 21 sponsors and their people as well, we still had over 225 people attend. That is impressive! Even with Ms. Mother Nature bearing down on us like helpless cattle, we still had a tremendous turnout.

Speaking of the weather – our speakers. With only a few minor conflicts, and last minute schedule shifts, 28 of our 29 speakers made it. Both which had coverage. More than half of the speakers we had here at SharePoint Saturday Boston, came from out of town. Either they drove in the horrid weather on Friday night, or they came in early on flights over Friday and Saturday to make it here. Thank you all so much.

Let’s have a round of applause for our speakers again, who were not paid a dime to attend, they came out of their own pocket, or, out of their respective companies’ pockets – to share the joys and triumphs of SharePoint with fellow Bostonians and New Englanders – (sorry in advance if some of the speakers below did not have their company listed in their speaker forms, or, had their current employer listed on LinkedIn – shoot me an email, tweet, or message via carrier pigeon and I’ll update accordingly!)

Adam Macaulay – CorasWorks
Nate Buell – Metalogix
Bob German – Microsoft
Chris Bortlik – Microsoft
Chris Geier – K2
Chris McNulty – KMA
Christian Buckley – echoTechnology
Christina Wheeler – Summit 7 Systems
David J. Pileggi Jr. – Insight
Florin Muntean – Phillips
G. Scott Singleton – i3solutions
Geoff Varosky – Grace-Hunt
Jacob Lauzier – Atalasoft
Jeff Willinger – RightPoint
Jerry Hughes – Grace-Hunt
Jose M. Colon – MicroLink
Linc Williams – i3solutions
Mark Rackley – UNFI
Rebecca Isserman – B&R Solutions
Richard Harbridge – Cosma International Group of Magna International
Russ Edelman – Corridor Consulting
Ryan Tacy – AvePoint
Sadalit Van Buren – Burntsand
Srini Sistla – ComSys
Steven Fowler – Corridor Consulting
Supriyo “SB” Chatterjee – KeyTech LLC
Tom Miller – BlueThread Technologies
Tracey Klein – MindSHIFT
Virgil Carroll – High Monkey Consulting

And our sponsors, not only does the content drive these events from our speakers, but, our sponsors take care of everything else. Without both speakers and sponsors, these events would not be possible. Sponsors took care of everything from raffle items, speaker dinner, speaker shirts, attendee shirts, venue, lunch, breakfast, afternoon snacks, pens, pads, bags (they’ll be here for the next event, I swear! They arrived the night AFTER the event!), and everything in between.

Event Sponsors
Microsoft – Facility
Grace-Hunt – Host, Event Organizer, Attendee Pads and Pens
ThirdM – Host, Event Organizer
AvePoint – Lunch Sponsor
Quest Software – Breakfast Sponsor
RepliWeb – Drinks and Snacks
K2 – Speaker Dinner Social
echoTechnology – Attendee Bags
RackSpace – Schedule and Evaluation Printing
Bluethread – Speaker Shirts
CorasWorks – Attendee Shirts

Raffle Sponsors
CorasWorks – CorasWorks AppEngine
KMA – SharePoint Health Check 2-Day Services
PluralSight – PluralSight On-Demand 1-Year Standard Subscription
MetaLogix – Garmin Nuvi 855 Portable GPS
echoTechnology – Zune HD
Source Consulting – $225 American Express Gift Card
Burntsand – 2 Red Sox Tickets
Edgewater Technology – $200 Legal Seafoods Gift Certificate
Slalom Consulting – XBox 360
Innovative-e – 1 seat to Delivering SharePoint Success Mentoring Workshop
O’Reilly – Books
Cengage Technology – Books
Pearson Education – Books

And last, but, certainly not least, the attendees. Who made it out, on a Saturday, in the winter, during some horrific weather, on a Saturday, in horrific weather, on a Saturday, in horrific weather (ok, so the sun came out for a very brief period!) This is an entirely community focused event. Without you, our attendees, there really would be no event to speak of. We as speakers and organizers LOVE to speak at, and organize these events (our sponsors love them too!). I’ve said it before, and I will say it again, and others have done the same, the SharePoint community is one like no other. I’ve had the privilege to work in most aspects of the IT world – from a network engineer, to dial-up support technician, to systems administrator, to web designer, and just about everything in between. There truly is no community that I am aware of like the SharePoint community, and I am truly grateful to be a part of it.

Thank you ALL for attending, sponsoring, and speaking, to make SharePoint Saturday Boston a SMASHING SUCCESS!

On that note, two things.

1.) I’m planning another one already for later this year. I’d like to do them on a 6-ish month cycle. Stay tuned.

2.) Most of the attendees noted in their SPS Boston evaluations, that they do not attend a local SharePoint Users Group. Well – that is about to change. I’ve had it in mind for a while, and am collaborating with several other like minded people, that Boston (and the surrounding area) needs a new Users Group.

BASPUG_whitebg

Ryan Tacy of AvePoint, Eugene Rosenfeld of Black Blade, Talbott Crowell of ThirdM, and myself of Grace-Hunt, are starting up the Boston Area SharePoint Users Group. We’re still working on an online home for ourselves, which should hopefully grow legs within the next week, but, we have a venue, a speaker, and a date and time laid down in stone already.

Please, if you are in the Boston Area, join is, on the same date of the official launch of Office 2010 and SharePoint 2010, for the first meeting of the Boston Area SharePoint Users Group, at the Microsoft New England Research and Development (N.E.R.D.!) Center on May 12, 2010, from 6PM to 8PM. Chris Bortlik will be presenting “Introducing SharePoint 2010”.

Follow the BASPUG on twitter at @BASPUG and via the hashtag #BASPUG

Now, back to our regularly scheduled programming…

Please visit http://www.sharepointsaturday.org/boston for copies of session decks (including my own, under sessions – you’ll see a familiar list view web part with sessions we have available), sponsor, and speaker information from the event.

Thank you ALL again. This was a great event to see old friends, and make many new ones, and I look forward to our next SPS Boston event!

Follow SharePoint Saturday Boston on twitter at @SPSBoston and via the hashtag #SPSBos

 

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About Geoff Varosky
Geoff Varosky is a Senior Architect for BlueMetal Architects, based out of Watertown, MA. He has been architecting and developing web based applications his entire career, and has been working with SharePoint for the past 13 years. Geoff is an active member of the SharePoint community, Co-Founder and Co-Organizer of the Boston Area SharePoint Users Group, co-founder for the Boston Office 365 Users Group, co-organizer for SharePoint Saturday Boston and speaks regularly at SharePoint events and user groups.

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