This past weekend, 45 women bloggers from all parts of the state of Arkansas loaded up their cars, trucks, SUV's and bicycles (alright, the road in was way too bumpy for bicycles) and headed out to the first ever Arkansas Women Bloggers Unplugged Conference held at the Ozark Natural Science Center. The Center is an environmental education and conference facility located in the Ozarks of northwest Arkansas. Yes, it was like going to camp, with bunk beds and giggling late into the night with your roommate. But, the lodge was air conditioned and very comfy and the folks at Off Botanicals protected us from the wild with their fabulous products.
We meeted and greeted on Friday night amidst the chirping critters, surrounded by 500 acres of Arkansas Natural Heritage Commission land. Yes, that means we were 35 miles from anything! Thankfully, I brought my own Dr. Pepper. Some of the women began hyperventilating as they drove in because there was limited (very limited) cell reception. Did you catch that this was an "unplugged" conference? Twitter withdrawal starting kicking in at about 9:00pm., but, laughter, connections, and some yummy food and drinks filled the gap.
It was a weekend filled with sessions with titles like Blogging 101, How Not to be a Schmuck, Pulling Blog Topics Out of Thin Air, Maximizing Social Media, Generating Traffic, Food Fantastic and so much more. A hugely successful craft sponsored by Elmer's (yes the glue company, and oh so much more) was the highlight of Saturday evening. Even though chronic twitching is the result of me having to use some form of specialty scissors (scrapbooking is like fingernails on a chalkboard, that is why I blog), I made it through and had a blast.
Many thanks to all the wonderful sponsors of the event. Our presenting sponsor Collective Bias, Partner Sponsor Off Botanicals, and all the other fab companies that stepped up making it all possible: Murphy USA, Petit Jean Meats, Field Notes Brand, Ghiradelli Chocolate, H.J. Heinz, NWA Motherlode, and SC Johnson!
Oh and the SWAG bags, mercy. Great stuff! I just might be giving one away real soon here on The Park Wife blog, hint-hint.
Also, to Beth of ONSC, you rock, yes, you are extraordinary! Julie and Fawn, the two ladies I suckered into this Arkansas Women Bloggers world, for your friendship and willingness for anything I suggest, you are priceless. No really, you are priceless, I can't afford you.
Looking forward to the next one, now I must go check for ticks,
The Park Wife