One thing I have to add is how well organized this event was. Antoinette and Susan run a tight ship. They have well coordinated volunteers; nicely orchestrated events; LOTS of communication with the latest news and information; thorough follow up with all the speakers; clear directions on what to bring, where to go, when events are for the attendees; arranged very inexpensive or free accommodations for speakers and attendees; contests with a clear set of rules, known judges and published winners and their photographs; open meeting areas so that people can network with others; orientation for newbies; a vendor area; great facilities albeit a bit far to walk for a couple venues; organizers who were NOT speakers or attendess and vice versa, and who weren't selling anything or their business; and finally lots of and lost of integrated marketing materials from posters, to a website, to pocket cards, to mailed printed materials that had up to date and current information.

Organizers (even those who claim to organize these things for 20+ years) of similar events should look into the practices of the NECCC (and f295) to get a hint (or a clue). NECCC has a lot of best practices.

Regards, Art.