A Summit newbie’s plans

Only a few more days until my first PASS Summit! Time to print out the session materials and stress over what to pack, and realize that I never got around to replacing my suitcase after the vacation two years ago when the zipper broke.


As a SQLPASS newbie, I’m rightfully paranoid that I’m going to miss out on something important, either because I don’t know about it or am paralyzed with too many choices at the same time in my schedule. I’ve never been to an event this big before. I’m arriving in Seattle on Sunday afternoon, and staying at the Sheraton, so if anyone has plans for Sunday evening, I’d love to hear about them!

I’ve put together my session list with at least two options per time frame so that I have an alternate picked out if my first choice is too full. I am giving myself permission to not go to sessions if a more valuable networking opportunity presents itself. Can anyone tell me if *all* sessions are being recorded? The DVD says technical….

Then there’s all of the extracurricular activities. I plan to attend pre- and post-conference sessions, but I’ve not yet signed up for any (dratted Canadian dollar dropped in value in the past week). I think I’ll keep my options open for now, just in case I hear of something else that piques my interest, like a photowalk? I won’t have much opportunity to see Seattle with such full days.


Arriving at 1550, cab sharing anyone? If not, I’ll see how easy it is to make it by public transit. This is when packing light is ideal. Anyone getting together Sunday evening for a bite?


Pre-conference session (optional).
Getting together with EDMPASS veterans to get the lay of the land for the Summit.
Networking to Build Business Contacts.
Welcome Reception and Quiz Bowl.
Also SQLServerCentral party.


Birds of a Feature Lunch oh which to pick…

6-8pm Exhibitor reception.


Quest breakfast.
Women in Technology Lunch.

7-10pm Microsoft Gameworks at 7th and Pike.


Chapter lunch.


Post-conference session (optional)
Any suggestions for what to do on a Friday night? I have to fit the Sci Fi Museum in somewhere.


Whew! Departing 0950.

General to do, before and during

  • Put together a list of questions to ask people who know more than I do.
  • Print out session material.
  • Get a SQLServerCentral sticker from Steve Jones.
  • Pick up my FREE copy of Microsoft SQL Server 2008 Standard Edition at the Microsoft Product Pavilion (while supplies last).
  • Collect DevBucks by asking SQL Server developers technical questions (closes Wednesday at 4:30).
  • Get PASS to Prizes card stamped by participating Expo vendors.
  • Pick up Deep Dives book and get signed by as many MVPs as possible.
  • Meet people!


The last thing I want is to end up like this guy and leave the Summit despairing at lost opportunities for networking. I am ridiculously shy and find it very difficult to insert myself into conversations, and that’s a big part of the reason why I signed up to be a square in SQLBingo! What could be a better way to meet people than to have them come looking for you? And though I can’t enter the contest, I still plan on searching out the SQL experts on my cards and handing out my new business cards to everyone I meet.

My greatest concern is the lack of a portable communication device. I do have a cell phone, but it’s not one of these fancy data plan things that everyone seems to have these days, and my roaming/texting charges outside of Canada are an arm and a leg, neither of which I have to spare. My laptop weighs about 10 pounds and only has about 30 minutes of battery life, so it’s not very practical to lug outside of a hotel room. I hope to figure out a means of staying tuned in by Sunday!



I’m a Square in a SQL World

bingoAre you going to the 2009 PASS Summit in Seattle in two weeks? If so, then you really should go to the SQLServerPedia Bingo page and print out three bingo cards to bring along! Just refresh the page to change the squares. Read the rules and come ask for my code word!

This is my first time going to PASS, and I am so looking forward to meeting all of the other squares. As you can see from the list below, I’ve only met one of the other squares in person, but I’m guaranteed to meet at least Wendy, as we’re sharing a room at the Sheraton.

As one of the squares, I’m not able to enter the contest, but just meeting some of these SQL Server experts will be a prize alone. Only 9 more days until PASS!

The list of squares:

Square SquareUserName
Andy Leonard AndyLeonard
Aaron Bertrand AaronBertrand
Aaron Nelson SQLvariant
Adam Machanic AdamMachanic
Allen Kinsel sqlinsaneo
Andy Warren sqlAndy
Arlene Gray whimsql
Bill Fellows billinkc
Bill Graziano billgraziano
Blythe Morrow blythemorrow
Brent Ozar brento
Brian Kelley kbriankelley
Colin Stasiuk BenchmarkIT (hey, I know you! you’re from Edmonton)
Denny Cherry mrdenny
Eric Humphrey lotsahelp
Geoff Hiten SQLCraftsman
Grant Fritchey GFritchey
Jeff Rush JeffRush
Jeremiah Peschka peschkaj
Joe Webb JoeWebb
Ken Simmons kensimmons
Kendal Van Dyke SQLDBA
Lee Anne Pedersen leeannepedersen (that’s me!!)
Lori Edwards loriedwards
Mike Walsh Mike_Walsh
Mike Wells SarasotaSQL
Pat Wright SQLAsylum
Peter Schott paschott
Peter Shire Peter_Shire
Ross Mistry RossMistry
Rushabh Mehta rushabhmehta
Steve Jones way0utwest
Stuart Ainsworth stuarta
Tim Benninghoff bugboi
Tim Ford sqlagentman
Tim Mitchell Tim_Mitchell
TJay Belt tjaybelt
Todd McDermid Todd_McDermid
Tom LaRock SQLRockstar
Trevor Barkhouse SQLServerSleuth
Wendy Pastrick wendy_dance (this one’s a freebie, she’s my roomie)
Wesley Brown WesBrownSQL
William McKnight williammcknight