It's hard to believe the TPT Vegas conference has already come and gone. I knew that it was going to be quite the experience, but I don't think I could have imagined what a blast it was! I'm pretty sure that my husband knows, without me even having said anything to him, that I plan on attending next year.
I'll be honest - I was a bit nervous going into this experience. I was going by myself and didn't know anyone else going too well. There were a few Chicago bloggers that I'd met once or twice, but that's about it! I'm so grateful to Marie from Once Upon A Classroom and some others for hosting a Chicago meetup a few weeks before Vegas because meeting a few people beforehand was super helpful!
Here are a few tips for those of you who weren't able to make it last year, but are hoping to in the future!
Tip #1: Put Yourself Out There!
I generally consider myself an introverted person. Being a teacher helps with that a little bit, but no matter what, I'm always nervous meeting new people. If you're someone who gets nervous too, don't let that stop you! It was so great meeting other people in the same TPT boat as me and getting to spend a few days with them! Everyone is so nice, whether you come across them at a meetup or get pulled to their table at lunch because you lost your group! #truestory #thatreallyhappened
Tip #2: Bring Business Cards
Going into Vegas, I was kind of nervous if I'd actually end up using my business cards. I'd heard many people didn't have much success passing them out last year, and I was on the fence over whether I should buy them. I'm glad I did though. While I didn't go through anywhere near as many as I bought, I probably was able to pass out 75 or so. The business cards were also super helpful later in the evening or when I got home and was finally able to add people to Instagram or check out their blog!
Seriously, that pile was only half of the business cards I received! Be sure to bring a button, too! Those were great at helping identify people.
Tip #3: Attend Some Meetups
I ended up going to four different meetups while I was there! This may have been overkill. My absolute favorite meetup was the pool party hosted by Lindsey from It's Elementary My Dear and Ashlyn from The Creative Classroom. Their meetup was quite a bit smaller than the others I went to, so it was nice to be able to talk to so many people who were there. Don't forget to plan things for your evenings, whether it's meetups or dinner with friends!
Tip #4: Get Ready for Some Awesome Goodies!
Let's just start off by saying that I got SIX new canvas bags while in Vegas! What?! It seemed like everywhere I turned, someone was handing out more bags. My school teacher friends are going to be super confused where I got all these bags from!
Now, don't get me wrong. The bags were cool and all, but there were some other really cool items that I got as well! Some were from sessions, like the awesome planner from Erin Cobb or the CD full of free clip art! Some were from meetups like the cool key chain from The Cool Kids Meet and Greet! Some were from raffles that I won like another planner that I won! That's not even mentioning all the the pens, candy, hair ties, and other fun that people were creative enough to attach to their business cards!
Tip #5: Stay Connected!
Once you meet all these fabulous new blogger friends, try to stay connected. Don't fall off the planet until the following year's TPT Vegas! Some bloggers from my area have already decided to get together more often, and I know that I'll be heading over to other's blogs to keep in touch. It'll make next year's trip even more fun!
Bonus Tip: Ask for a room close to the elevators!
This one is a bit of a joke, but for real, you might want to! My room was gorgeous! I felt guilty having it all to myself. Who needs two queen beds, a sunken living room with a pull-out and a full bathroom suite to themselves? Was it nice, though? You bet! The worst part was getting there! I had to walk to the very end of the hallway, past thirty other rooms (#icounted) to get to mine! Let me tell you - it's not so fun when you're pregnant!
If you're thinking of going next year, let me know! I'm always happy to meet new blogging friends! And be sure to check in with The Elementary Entourage (click their button below!) to learn more from other TPT Vegas bloggers!