SolidWorks World 2011 – Sunday

Sunday was relatively open for us to spend some more time exploring San Antonio – nothing on “the schedule” until the early evening Opening Reception at the Partner Pavilion.  I wasn’t signed up for any of the certification testing, I was not participating in the alpha testing, and for the first time in several years I was not attending the AE Workshops (These are for the Application Engineers that work for SolidWorks resellers.)  My only immediate plan was to hit registration first thing in the morning (word to the wise, get it out of the way as early as possible to avoid waiting in lines.)

As predicted, registration was a breeze, no lines whatsoever.  I picked up all of my “goodies”, and I dig the backpack – quite compact, yet it holds a ton of stuff.  I had a chance to chat with Richard Doyle (User Group Head Honcho) for a little bit.  It is always great to see Richard – I worked with him a lot when I was starting the SolidWorks User Group of Nebraska (SwugONE) – He is definitely one of the people that helps bring the SolidWorks Community closer together and feel more like a big family.  (Richard was also one of the first recipients of my “business card/keychain/bottle openers” – If you got one, you know what I’m talking about, if not, look for me at SolidWorks World 2012 – I’ll have a new variation.)  Wayne Tiffany was also milling about the registration area, always good to see him and catch up on all things SolidWorks.  (Wayne is a User Group leader from KC, and a perennial SolidWorks World presenter.)

After wandering around all day, it was time to go to the Opening Reception.  The Partner Pavilion was jam packed with vendors, attendees, and all kinds of cool products that were designed in SolidWorks.  The opening reception is a great time to mingle, chat up the various vendors, and see all of the new technology.  I left the opening reception a little early to head off to the tweetup.

This year the tweetup was held in conjunction with a User Group leader gathering, so there were a lot of familiar faces.  It was nice to finally meet some of the people behind the tweets.  It might be because I’m watching the Oscars, but I feel the need to name just a handful of them;  Josh Mings (SolidSmack) – Had to chase him down for some of the sweet new SolidSmack stickers, Lou Gallo (SolidWorks Heard) and Jeff Mirisola – was “stuck” between these two at a DriveWorks certification event years ago, always good to see these guys, Ed Gebo – user group leader and all around cool guy, Charles Culp – actually grew up very close to where I now live (it is indeed a small world, but I wouldn’t want to paint it), Anna Wood (SolidMuse) – benchmarking guru and Red Wings fan, Phil Sluder – King of the Tips & Tricks presentations, Scott Baugh – It was very interesting talking to another person that used to work for a reseller and is now back on the user side of the fence,  and Matthew West (SolidWorks) – we have him to thank for putting together the tweetup, he did an awesome job – here’s hoping for many more!

After a crazy long day it was time to catch a few hours of sleep before the first General Session of SWW11.

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