Tag Archive: connect13

The Blogger Open, There Might be Life in this Thing Yet

I delivered the bad news last month that the Blogger Open would not be back for IBM Connect 2013.  I appreciated all the feedback, and it is clear that there is interest in a post Closing Session event so I followed up on some suggestions. I have good news and bad news.

The Good news

The new bowling alley at Downtown Disney is the perfect location to hold and event, they will reserve a section of the bowling alley, and serve food.  While it is a bus ride away from the Swan & Dolphin, there is a free shuttle so transportation is not a problem.  Logistically it is better than mini-golf as we won’t have the chaos of getting everyone out on the course.   Sounds great right? Keep Reading

The Bad News

It is not cheap.  The Blogger Open has ranged anywhere from 50-75 people over the years.  To reserve 6 Bowling lanes, and feed 75 people (alcohol would be ‘cash bar’)  is approximately $6000 which is substantially more than it cost in the past for mini-golf.

I throw this out there to let the community know there are options, if anyone is interested in sponsoring the event, please get in touch with me, if I find enough sponsors I will run the event.

Farewell Blogger Open… Thanks for the Memories

For the past four years following the Lotusphere Closing General Session, the Blogger Open has taken place at the Disney Fantasia Gardens Miniature Golf Course.  If you are not sure what the Blogger Open is was you can find out all about it here.

I am sorry to announce that the Blogger Open is done, history, finished. Why you may ask? Simply put I can not come to an agreement with the folks at Disney to run the event this year,

The facts are as follows:

  • Disney will not (for any price) grant us exclusive use of the course
  • Disney insists on interspersing families among our group
  • Disney loves the beer sales generated by the Blogger Open (they sell in a few hours what they usually sell in month)
  • Disney receives complaints from the families they insist on putting out on the course among us

The fact is 75 geeks, sleep deprived for a week, drinking beer, having fun after a week attending a conference, while meaning no harm, simply does not mix well with families vacation at Disney.

As a father of 3 small children I can appreciate that, and while I can not understand why Disney refuses to rent us the course, I will not make commitments to the Disney folks that are unrealistic.

Big thanks to all those who helped make this even fun and successful over the last number of years. Warren Elsmore who along with me came up with the idea and helped launch it.  Mike McGarel for developing the Blogger Open site (and contributing the code to OpenNTF) and Joe Hoetzl for providing the site graphics.  Thanks to the event sponsors throughout the years, Corey Davis and Conxsys, GSX, Andrew Pollack and Northern Collaborative Technologies, Chris Miller and Spiked Studios, and David Leedy and Notes In 9.

All that is left to do now is to figure out what I should do after the Closing General Session of Connect 2013.