It's only ten days away -- the Iam Lotus User Group in St. Louis, with the Chicago MWLUG following about five weeks from now.  I've been prepping for IamLUG for a few days, and am confident this is going to be a great event.

Some reasons to come to IamLUG -- where there are still a few seats available for this free event on August 3/4:

  • Kevin Cavanaugh will be keynoting the conference -- and will have some exciting announcements
  • Mary Beth Raven is going to do a session on what's new in Notes 8.5.1 -- mostly through demo
  • Mike Masterson -- a product manager you may not know yet but should -- is covering  "The RedBull fast-track for plug-in and sidebar development".  Mike is the guy behind the recent LinkedIn and TripIt plug-ins for Notes 8, which installed in a snap and are already helping me be more productive in my Notes client
  • Free beer -- no seriously -- from Rob Novak and the SNAPPS crew...ok, it's free American beer so it won't be quite like the free Guinness Rob has become known for at ILUG and I'm a little worried since St. Louis is home to one of the Budweiser breweries but maybe he opted for something other than BL64
  • GSX is running a GSX day following IamLUG -- I can't stay myself (for good reasons), but this agenda has some great speakers adding even more value
  • RIM is doing Blackberry certification testing onsite
  • The event is connected to a casino and is in a fun area of St. Louis, Lacledes Landing
  • Oh I'm speaking somewhere in there, too

And if you can't make it to St. Louis, a few weeks later you have a simlarly great opportunity with MWLUG in Chicago.  Some reasons to come to MWLUG:
  • Many of the same great speakers
  • More importantly, a whole bunch of new speakers.  One thing that surprised me when these events came out is that they seem like the perfect "dear-IBM-I'm-a-great-speaker-take-me-at-Lotusphere" auditions, but few "new" speakers signed on for IamLUG.  At MWLUG, there are a bunch of "new" speakers, some on topics that are less common and perhaps therefore even more useful to the attendees.
  • Chicago has the best concentration of restaurants in the world (OK maybe New York is better) and I can give you some great recommendations
  • You get to see me speak coming off two redeye flights back from Australia
  • The event includes one of the best touristy things to do in Chicago -- the architecture boat tour (locals like it too!) which will explain to you why it is no longer called the Sears Tower
  • There is a two-day pre-conference Notes/Domino 8.5 upgrade workshop from PSC, free of charge

In short, if you can make it to either event, you should!

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