Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Space: Going Where Only This Blogger Has Gone Before …

Today I'm winging my way across the United States from D.C. to Las Vegas for the 2009 Space Allocation Meeting. We go LIVE from Caesars Palace tomorrow morning at 8 a.m. Pacific Standard Time, and I'll be there for every minute over the course of a two-day IAAPA Attractions Expolooza.

This will be my second consecutive year going on this little adventure my IAAPA colleagues and I refer to simply as "Space." It's tempting to go back and read my posts from last year, but I'm resisting; no reruns here. Any similarities you may find between this year's coverage and last year will be simply because the same brain is trying to process all that goes on over the course of a hectic 36 hours.

I'm hopeful my brain has a bit better perspective on the proceedings this time around, since I certainly can't be considered a newbie after a trial by fire in 2008. But there are plenty of things to keep everyone in the room busy this year, most notably, of course, a new hall in a new city (Vegas, baby!). To get yourself prepared, be sure to check out IAAPA's home page for links to all the information you'll need relative to this year's meeting. And, don't forget: If for some reason you can't get to the blog as much as you want tomorrow, you can also follow IAAPA's new twitter feed on Wednesday, provided by my colleague Julie Parsons.

So, is everyone ready to go at this again? For some that may be wondering what all the fuss is about, I'll leave you with this little story, related to me by another colleague, Pete Barto, who heads up the exhibit sales team:

Last week, he had a visitor to our headquarters in Alexandria, Virginia: Don Stinson, president of Stinson Band Organ Co. in Ohio. Stinson and his wife drove through a snowstorm and took a major detour on his way to Hagerstown, Maryland, so he could hand-deliver his signed booth contract and ensure he'd be eligible for Space. Pete told me later it was "perhaps the best story of a contract I've ever heard."

That's how important this process is, and that's why we're covering it on In the Queue. See you tomorrow!

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