Back at the live bait shop after seven weeks of intensive travel, and I am now packing and prepping for leaving Sunday for Las Vegas and DSE next week.
A quick look at the EventBrite page says there are 396 registrants for the mixer – between sign-ups and sponsor invites – and I have added more based on personal invites and responses to particularly talented grovelling. That means more than 400 people will, in theory, show up Tuesday night for the mixer. Experience tells me about 75% of those will actually show. We always have leftover badges – and understand that things come up … flights get delayed, booths aren’t ready, better offers for splashy, expensive but early dinners come in.
For those attending, the setup is almost identical to the last couple of years. Hard Rock on the strip, NOT the hotel/casino well off the strip. The right place is across from New York, New York and just down from the MGM Grand. The event is on the 3rd floor. There’s an outdoor patio for smokers and people who’ve had a rough, snowy winter.
When you show up, 4″ by 2.5″ Dymo name labels will be laid out on tables in somewhat alphabetical order. Find yours, take it to the reception table where Mrs. Sixteen-Nine and/or her sister Sue, back for a second year as our Celebrity Greeter, will give you a badge and lanyard. The label goes on the obvious white blank space on the front of the badge.
That badge has the two drink tickets attached, and all you need to do is tear them away and hand them to a bartender. We did that as a way to ensure if you got a badge, you did indeed get your drink tickets, as well. If you want to have a third, or really get your Vegas on, the bartenders will happily take your cash or credit cards. The drink selection is top-shelf – not super-super primo, but quality stuff.
There will be lots and lots of nibblies – from fine cheeses to chips and salsa. It’s not a full meal, but will tide you over. Or if you have been run off your ass all day, it’s lunch.
Make sure you thank the sponsors, who put in the funds to make this happen.
The event starts at 5:30, though there are usually some eager and ever-thirsty Canadians there and ready to go by 5(looking at you Mantha). The event runs until 8:30. We keep the music down to background levels so people can chat comfortably, and feel no need to shout and steadily ask, “What???”
A look at the list shows there are lots of familiar names, but also quite a few unfamiliar ones – as well people from end-user companies.
I will be hanging around the lobby the whole time, so you will very likely see me. If you walk up and say Hi, and I SHOULD know you but am blanking out, don’t feel bad. I get overwhelmed by the evening, and my names-to-faces skills slip badly as the night wears on. If you see me fading, bring me a Belgian white.
Safe travels, and see you very soon.
PS – There are TopGolf events here and there through the week (big Chief one on Wednesday evening). An industry friend and I are wildly slapping at balls mid afternoon Monday, and perhaps having a beer(s). Let me know if you want to hit a few and hang out before the DSE maelstrom kicks in.
Dave Haynes is the founder and editor of Sixteen:Nine, an online publication that has followed the digital signage industry for some 14 years. Dave does strategic advisory consulting work for many end-users and vendors, and also writes for many of them. He’s based near Halifax, Nova Scotia, on Canada’s east coast.