So we have gotten quotes for venues for our WordCamp this year. SolarMax charges the same amount per day for us, so adding a day adds a lot more to the budget, even if we do a half day.
We will have to park on the street for the beginners day, but it will be at the same location as the rest of the camp.
Verious helped by getting a quote from UCR for a room at the campus at a much better rate.
The trade off becomes that parking is not close to the venue, so we may need to setup a shuttle or something for people. I also am concerned that people may get confused that it is not at the same place the main WordCamp would be held.
I am looking to get feedback from the community to see which we would prefer, as well as other ideas.
I am wondering how far the venue is from the parking with regard to UCR. I wonder if it is further than WCLAX? maybe we should go down and scope the scene one of these days soon Josh.
If we include beginners day would that make this a three day WordCamp? I’m uncertain we’d get enough speakers to fill three quality days of sessions.
Rather than add a day could we focus beginners on the first day even if it’s just the first half?
I envision it could look like this as a two day camp
9am – 12:00
Beginner Topics (single room 3 large sessions)
Beginner Topics (dual rooms 6 smaller sessions)
1:30 – 4:30
Advisory Topics (best practices) (single room 3 large sessions)
Advisory Topics (best practices) (dual room 6 sessions sessions)
standalone topics, two tracks
Room 1: WP and your business
Room 2: WP design and development
What the goal of Beginners Day would be to get people to the point where they could follow along with the talks of the next two days.
One of the biggest comments we got last year was a lot of people weren’t to the point where they had a WordPress site setup, and they were lost even for the more basic talks.
I was thinking a session on Friday 9am to 1pm, walking people through setting up a local install WordPress, how to install themes and plugins from the repo, how to work with a host, and finally best practices.
Those are typically not items people talk about in sessions, as we have a habit of thinking everyone already knows those basic steps.
We wouldn’t need to source out speakers for the Beginners Day as we already have a plan for it, and people that can cover the different items.
I’d counter that we could focus the entire theme on beginner topics and the community would benefit. Heck, it might even help get sponsorships knowing we’re attracting new users.
Room 1: Beginner Content (WP setup, choosing a theme, what are plugins, best practices)
Room 2: WP Community Topics (GPL, Meetups, Hobbies, What is FOSS)
Room 1: Beginner Content (next steps, backups, workflow, content.)
Room 2: WP Community Topics (Design, Dev, Business)
I’m not against three days or two locations, I’m advocating an intentionally beginner focused camp.
It wouldn’t be the worst thing in the world if we considered assigning topics and asking presenters to fill them. (although I’m not certain if that’s okay with the handbook, just a thought.)
The problem I see from doing specifically beginner focused camp for one of the main days is we miss out on letting people submit what they want for talks, and allowing that to grow organically. I understand the concept of try to pack it into two days, but I have seen it work better with a third, half day.
I do appreciate the feedback, and I will take it as a consideration if others want to speak up on the matter.
WCLAX did have a beginner day add-on in place last year. If I recall correctly it sold out.
I attended the LA Beginner Day 2 years ago and got a lot out of it. And it was a huge success, filled the room with about 2 hundred people. It cost me an additional $10 for that day, it wasn’t included in the 2 day cost. I was happy with the value that I got. It helped me digest the next 2 days of talks. You can always have a single track on day one for beginners, but that cuts out the other talks for them on that day.
I agree with Verious, the walk at LA is not short, so how far are you talking at Riverside? Definitely need to know the distance.
This is a sticky wicket, it’s kind of a no win. The smart choice is not the cheapest choice. Would charging $10 for the day help offset the extra rental fee from SolarMax? If it came close, I would lean towards Friday at SolarMax.
if we limit beginner day to say 50 people could we rent out just a large room rather than the whole space
The single large room is the only way beginner day will work, it can’t be in 2 rooms. The very large room can seat about 150. The small rooms would need to be limited to around 50, but remember that there needs to be tables for the people to work with their laptops.