I spent the last three days attending ASAE’s Annual Meeting in Los Angeles. The event included its usual array of educational sessions, exhibit floor, and social activities. I attended two of the three general sessions (I was traveling home during the third session) and attended several breakout sessions. Here are my thoughts, in no particular order:

  • The exhibit hours were reduced to two days, and extended to overlap with afternoon educational sessions. My unscientific polling of the technology exhibitors showed overwhelming support for just two days of exhibiting, but a much weaker response to the overlapping hours. I’ll be curious to know what ASAE learns directly from the exhibitors, especially the destination exhibitors (as I believe their take may be very different from the technology vendors).
  • More unscientific polling: show floor traffic was VERY good. My personal sense is that associations were sitting on their hands in 2009 trying to figure out what was going to happen in this “new economy.” Well, here we are, one year later, and the new economy is not going anywhere so now it’s time to get back to business. Hopefully this is what the technology vendors are seeing (I know that’s what I’m seeing in my work).
  • The funniest part about the “Guilt by Association” sitcom was the laugh track. I don’t know if it was intentional or not, but the laugh track played at some of the most inappropriate times, which gave me a chuckle.
  • Velma Hart was funnier than Joy Behar. (And I mean that as a compliment to Velma.)
  • Perhaps the funniest line of the event was from one of the new CAE recipients, who in response to Joy Behar’s question of “What are you wearing?” replied “TJ Maxx!”
As usual, the Annual Meeting proved to be a great place to connect and re-connect. I saw many old friends (I’ve been at this for 20 years now!) and made some new acquaintances as well. My only disappointment (or should I say my five year old daughter’s disappointment) was that I was not able to (in her words) find Jonas while I was in LA. Maybe next time.