Recap: WordCamp Northeast Ohio 2016 and Announcing WordCamp Kent 2017

The dust has settled on WCNEO, and for a first-time WordCamp, we’re happy to report it was a huge success!

With over 100 tickets sold to this two-day event, the WordCamp Northeast Ohio organization team is thrilled that the event went off without a hitch.

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Speakers & Sponsors

At WordCamp NEO we included a full lineup of great speakers spanning a variety of topics to ensure we had something for everyone. We skipped the tracks and let our attendees select their schedules based on their personal interests.

We kicked off each day with our keynotes, Eric Meyer (Saturday) and Chris Lema (Sunday) followed by three simultaneous sessions at a time, offering a wide-range of topics for designers, developers, and beginners alike, leaving no WordPresser behind! If you missed any of our sessions, be sure to tune into WordPress.tv and check us out. You’ll find the speakers slides there, too (if they shared them).

Of course WordCamp NEO wouldn’t have been possible without our sponsors. Their funding and in-kind contributions made this event a great success, and we couldn’t have done it without them! Everyone was grateful to have their awesome swag, too, and we were thrilled to have the awesome folks from A2 Hosting and SiteGround on-site, sharing some insight into their services during the hallway track and between sessions, too.

Venues

One of the toughest parts of planning a WordCamp is finding the right venue. Well, we knocked it out of the park with the Kent State Hotel and Conference Center. This boutique hotel in the heart of Kent was the perfect location for our event. The staff was phenomenal, attending to our every need, and we were just steps away from the many artisan shops and restaurants in downtown Kent, which made breaking for lunch on Saturday an easy and seamless escape to explore the area. The conference rooms were comfortable, easy to navigate, and situated close to one another, allowing ample time for hallway conversations between sessions. And on Sunday, the catered Taco and Burrito bar was a big hit with all our fellow WordCampers.

Our After Party venue, Kent Lanes – 11th Frame, was another perfect find. Our party-goers had plenty of positive feedback about the event, letting us know the staff, food, and festivities were a hit a hit all the way around.

What’s Next?

WordCamp Kent 2017
Our team of organizers have already started planning to make next year’s event even better! And we’re really excited to announce we’ll be hosting WordCamp Kent 2017 in the same location next year! Don’t let the name fool you, same camp, same location, we’re just following the new naming conventions in place by our governing body, WordCamp Central.

So save the date June 24th & June 25th 2017 to join us at the Kent State Hotel & Conference Center for another great WordCamp next year at WCKENT2017!

Be sure to check out our new site, WordCamp Kent 2017, and subscribe for updates to stay in the loop as details unfold throughout the year, or follow us on Twitter @WordCampKent.

Monthly Meetups
Can’t wait until next year? Then drop into one of our Northeast Ohio WordPress Meetups near you!

Join the Conversation in Slack
Stay connected and join in on the conversation at our Slack Channel. As things get moving, we’ll keep the conversation flowing here. You can get a Slack invitation here.

Thank You!
A big THANK YOU to everyone who made WordCamp NEO such a special event this year. Our community of Attendees, Speakers, Sponsors, and Volunteers are what make these events possible each year and we look forward to seeing you again next year!

 

 

Venue, Parking, Registration & More…

Hard to believe WordCamp Northeast Ohio is just days away, Saturday, June 11th!

In order to ensure your weekend goes as smooth as possible, we’re sharing all the nitty gritty details before you get there…

VENUE
Kent State University Hotel and Conference Center
215 South Depeyster Street
Kent, Ohio 44240
Phone: 855-353-4031 or 330-346-0100

Enter the venue from the front (Main Entrance) or rear of the building. WordCamp Sessions will be located on the first floor in the rear Conference Center rooms.

For more info on our venue, or to reserve a last minute room, check out our previous post.

PARKING
We recommend parking at the Kent Central Gateway Parking Deck located across from the hotel & conference center on South Depeyster Street

$10 Total – for Registered Hotel Guests
(in-and-out privileges all weekend)
$5 per/day  – for Non-Registered Guests                               (no in-and-out privileges)

Click here for additional parking locations & details.

REGISTRATION
Saturday & Sunday at 8 AM

Registration tables will be located on the first floor at the rear of the conference center just outside our session rooms.

FOOD & BEVERAGE
Breakfast: Bagels, cream cheese and muffins
Lunch: 12:00-1:30 each day
 – Saturday: Stretch your legs and visit one of the nearby restaurants in downtown Kent
 – Sunday: Taco bar at the venue

Coffee, tea, and Coke products will be available throughout the weekend!

ATTIRE
WordCamps are casual events. Dress comfortably and plan for air conditioning indoors and humid/low 80’s with possible thunderstorms outside.

AFTER PARTY
Saturday 6PM
Kent Lanes – 11th Frame
1524 S Water St, Kent, OH 44240
(330) 673-1448

Be sure to checkout our recent post for more After Party details.

TICKETS
Tickets are still available. If you haven’t bought yours yet, get one today!

For more information on what to expect if this is your first WordCamp, check out our earlier post.

Pack Your Bags for WordCamp Northeast Ohio (No Tent Needed!)

If you’re new to WordCamp, or just visiting from outside the area, you may wonder what to bring to WordCamp Northeast Ohio. Here’s the things we most recommend you include when packing.

Umbrella – Northeast Ohio can have some pretty unpredictable weather and this weekend is no exception! You can expect some scattered showers and thunderstorms in the forecast, so come prepared.

The venue is walking distance from the downtown area, so you’ll want to stay dry, especially on your stroll to lunch Saturday afternoon. We’re expecting temps in the low-to-mid 80’s with some humidity as well, but fear not, our venue is air-conditioned! (Unfortunately, outside is not.)

Pen and Notepad – Unless you have an eidetic memory, you’ll most likely want to take some notes. And with our fantastic lineup of speakers, you’ll certainly want to capture a lot of their thoughts and inspirations as you go!

Laptop (optional) – If the machine is mightier than the sword (or pen) for you, then we recommend you bring a laptop to capture whatever inspires you most. Plus, you’ll have the advantage of looking things up on the fly (and if the opportunity arises, sharing your code or site). We’ll have free WIFI and charging stations at the venue, so you can recharge and limit your personal data usage during your stay, too.

VPN (optional) – If you’re suspicious about using the WIFI at our venue, we won’t judge you. Feel free to tap into your own secured VPN (Virtual Private Network) during the event. A VPN is inexpensive, and gives you the added security a public WIFI just can’t deliver alone.

Mobile Phone/Smart Watches – We encourage you to Tweet, Facebook, Instagram, Snapchat, Slack and do whatever else it is you do these days to stay connected (#WCNEO). We just ask that you do it quietly, and keep your devices silenced during all presentations (because interrupting our awesome speakers with your social media shenanigans is just not cool!)

Device Chargers – We’ll supply the power at our charging stations, but come prepared with your own cables. Also, realize tech can be unreliable, so it never hurts to carry a travel charger or battery backup source. (Sharing your personal power source is a great way to connect with new friends, too).

Your Curiosity – Get the most bang for your buck and come prepared to ask questions. You’ll have access to great WordPress community resources during WordCamp Northeast Ohio, all touting a variety of skills and experiences to interest you.

And keep in mind, like at all WordCamps, our speakers, volunteers and organizers are donating their personal time and expertise to you. They pay all their own travel expenses and present to you for free.

So, take advantage and make the most of their time and yours, by picking their brains about all things WordPress while you’re there!

We look forward to seeing you soon.

If you haven’t purchased your tickets yet, there’s still time to buy your ticket now!

Attending WordCamp Northeast Ohio? Get Your After Party Info Here!

All WordCamp Northeast Ohio attendees are invited to the WCNEO After Party Saturday at 6PM.

Kent Lanes – 11th Frame
1524 S Water St.
Kent, OH 44240
(330) 673-1448

Your WordCamp NEO Badge gets you free access to bowling, cornhole, drink tickets, unlimited non-alcoholic beverages, and heavy appetizers!

So don’t miss out on this great opportunity to have some fun and hang out with your fellow WordCampers, speakers, organizers and volunteers this Saturday night.

Kent Lanes has plenty of free parking and we’ve reserved the bar and patio areas for our event.

When you pass through the first set of doors, just take a quick left to get this party started!

See you then and don’t forget to bring your WordCamp NEO Badge for entry.

In-Kind Sponsor Spotlight: StickerGiant

A big thank you to StickerGiant for joining us as an In-Kind Level sponsor.

More About Our Sponsor:
StickerGiant prints high-quality stickers and labels. They have the best customer service, quick turnaround times and free custom shapes using state of the art laser cutting. Every sticker has a story. Want to share your story today? They’re waiting to hear from you.
stickergiant.com

Thank you to the StickerGiant team for helping to make WordCamp Northeast Ohio extra special!

Akron Level Sponsor Spotlight: Gravity Forms

A big thank you to Gravity Forms for joining us as an Akron Level sponsor.

More About Our Sponsor:
Gravity Forms, from Rocketgenius, are being used in over a million websites, and there are plenty of reasons why. Contact and ordering forms can be customized almost endlessly, to fit every possible need. They’re simple and intuitive. And they integrate beautifully with third-party services such as PayPal.

Conditional Logic takes your forms to a whole new level, seamlessly customizing the form itself based on the web visitor’s own responses. You’ll be amazed at all you can do, quickly and easily.
Check out all the great features, and get started, at GravityForms.com

Thank you to the Gravity Forms team. WordCamp Northeast Ohio wouldn’t be possible without you!

Canton Level Sponsor Spotlight: WPML

A big thank you to WPML for joining us as a Canton Level sponsor.

More About Our Sponsor:
OnTheGoSystems is the author of WPML and Toolset plugins.

WPML turns WordPress websites multilingual. It works with caching, SEO and E-Commerce plugins, and allows the building of complete multilingual sites. WPML powers simple blogs as well as corporate and enterprise sites.

Toolset plugins allow you to develop WordPress sites without PHP. They work with any theme and with other plugins.

OnTheGoSystems is always looking for exceptional people to join the team. To learn more about our products and open positions, visit:

http://www.onthegosystems.com/

Thank you to the WPML team. WordCamp Northeast Ohio wouldn’t be possible without you!

Akron Level Sponsor Spotlight: GoDaddy

A big thank you to GoDaddy for joining us as an Akron Level sponsor

More About Our Sponsor:
GoDaddy’s mission is to radically shift the global economy toward small businesses by empowering people to easily start, confidently grow and successfully run their own ventures. With more than 12 million customers worldwide and 57 million domain names under management, GoDaddy gives small business owners the tools to name their idea, build a beautiful online presence, attract customers and manage their business.

Thank you to the GoDaddy team. WordCamp Northeast Ohio wouldn’t be possible without you!

Canton Level Sponsor Spotlight: Full Spectrum Marketing

A big thank you to Full Spectrum Marketing for joining us as a Canton Level sponsor.

More About Our Sponsor:
Whether we are helping a small business, a school district, or a publicly traded company, we follow the principles of a simple marketing truth – go where the people are. Full Spectrum Marketing focuses on your audience while blending the core principles of advertising – reach and frequency – to build a comprehensive integrated marketing and communications plan for you, complete with execution and measurement. Whether you need a full marketing plan, or just a great website, we are ready to help you.

Thank you to the Full Spectrum Marketing team. WordCamp Northeast Ohio wouldn’t be possible without you!

Western Reserve Level Sponsor Spotlight: A2 Hosting

A big thank you to A2 Hosting for joining us as a Western Reserve Level sponsor.

More About Our Sponsor:
Since 2003, A2 Hosting has specialized in linux-based, developer-friendly hosting. We cater to the WordPress community by offering robust servers and hosting accounts at an affordable cost. We back up our hosting with 24/7 support available by phone, ticket, or live chat.

A2 is active in the WordPress community – we dedicate a percentage of our development time to WordPress as part of the Five for the Future initiative, and we are active in many WordCamps. Our in-house Application Optimizer, Ben Cool is also an organizer of the Ann Arbor WordCamp, and speaks at many other WordCamps across the country.

Thank you to the A2 Hosting team. WordCamp Northeast Ohio wouldn’t be possible without you!