Awesome Icons. I had the chance to meet both Preston Bailey and David Tutera last year—and so did many other attendees. It was, quite frankly, a hoot to see how down-to-earth and human these celebrity designers are in person. I actually was there when one nervous, excited planner spilled red wine on Preston’s white shirt at a meet-and-greet. I learned a huge lesson in how to be gracious from the way Preston handled this awkward situation. Who knows what may happen this year?
2. Pure Eye Candy. Like anyone in this industry, I am drawn to visual delights. This conference and tradeshow is stuffed with them, from the gorgeous tabletop display contest, to the glittering fabrics in exhibitor booths, to the inspiring images that seem to abound everywhere you look.
I can’t wait to get that familiar rush of joy and admiration while I soak in all the new sights.
3. Food Food Food. I love food. Looking at it, tasting it, preparing it and displaying it. How many shows do you know of where event planners can get up and close to the greatest caterers in the world, and their awesome suppliers? ‘Nuf said.
4. Friends. I actually got to meet people I’ve only heard about, talked to or emailed, face-to-face. People like King Dahl, Nico Cervantes, Howard Givner. I also met planners and suppliers that I’ve interviewed for stories, and photographers whose work I’ve used in the magazine. It adds a whole new dimension to “networking” and I’m really looking forward to doing a lot more of it this year. How about you?
5. It’s Vegas, Baby. Whether you love it or hate it, there’s nothing quite like it. You know you’re alive, and there’s an adventure around every corner. Just like there is at the Idea Factory. Will I see you there?