Another SQL Saturday has come and gone, but for me this one was the best by far. I’ve now had the pleasure of attending 3 SQL Saturday events but this was the first one I’ve had a hand in planning. It was a great experience and I can’t wait until next year!
On Friday I spent the day at Brent Ozar’s (blog | twitter) super-awesome FreeCon (I’ll post about that soon!) From there I headed to the event site, DeVry University in Addison (thank you for letting us use your building!), where I joined a group already hard at work doing things like stuffing goody bags, moving tables and sorting registration info. From there we headed to the speaker dinner at Home Run Inn, which was sponsored by the great folks at SQL Sentry. There I got to meet some wonderful people I had previously known only from twitter including Allen White (blog | twitter), Hope Foley (blog | twitter), Jose Chinchilla (blog | twitter) and Nicholas Cain (blog | twitter).
Saturday started bright and early with setting up breakfast and hauling in water and pop for 400. We were fortunate to have many great volunteers willing to help, which made the day go very smoothly. There’s too many of them to list here, but if you helped out with anything, please know that we really do appreciate it!
Helping to plan and run the event is a wonderful thing, and I can’t wait to do it again. That being said, probably the biggest downside to being on staff is that you really can’t attend all of the sessions. I only made it to one of them: Allen White’s (blog | twitter) talk on automating Policy-Based Management using PowerShell. The rest of my day was spent helping out, getting stuff ready, setting up and tearing down lunch, and preparing for my presentation.
Lunch was very well-received and I heard many complements about the food. A big thanks to Chef Phillip Foss of The Meatyballs Mobile for working with us and delivering our sandwiches on time. We were able to get everyone fed in about 15 to 20 minutes, which I thought was excellent. With pizza it takes time to cut and scoop slices onto your plate, and often people will stop to take from more than one pie. Having pre-wrapped sandwiches seemed much more efficient because everyone could just grab one and go.
The presentation I gave on Backup and Restore internals seemed to go very well. I had an acceptable audience size for the last timeslot of the day and got many excellent questions. Hopefully my review cards will agree with this once I get them back. The only real snag I had was that the projector wasn’t displaying my VM window quite right, so the entire SSMS window wasn’t visible at the same time. I’ll have to figure out how to remedy this problem for the future.
No SQL Saturday would be complete without an afterparty. This one was a great time with much karaoke and merriment had by all. Unfortunately what happens at the afterparty stays at the afterparty, so if you’d like to see how much fun they really are, you’ll have to join us next time!
If you still haven’t made it to an SQL Saturday event, I emplore you to look over the schedule for one in your area. Even if you arent a DBA per se, there’s still a lot of information there that can benefit developers, sysadmins, and other IT folk alike. They also offer incredible opportunities for networking which can help anyone. Thank you so much to our generous sponsors for making this event possible as well as to the members of the community who made it a success. Hope to see you all next year!