At long last, here’s the details for VMworld 2016’s Warm-up Party as a Service. (TL;DR, see the bolded items, but I think you’ll want to read the rest anyways).
WHAT: A pre-VMworld US party
WHY: To get old and new friends together to kick-off the week in a relaxed, friendly atmosphere to set the week off right
Now, before we get into it, we want to preface our announcement with a little bit of background. Finding sponsors this year was hard. With US presidential elections, Brexit, a massive vendor acquisition/merger, and a cooling off of the VC and IPO markets, vendors don’t seem to have a lot of money to spend. That has affected our plans. Some of you will not be happy, but this is better than nothing. Hopefully you’ll agree. If not, remember that we’re just a bunch of introverted nerds wanting to get together to support the community.
On to the plans….
This year, VMunderground will be held August 28th, 2016. For those not keeping score, that’s exactly 5 years after our last round in Las Vegas (August 28th, 2011). And this happens to be the 10th VMunderground. Needless to say, nostalgia weighed heavy on the group this year, so we decided to aim for sacred VMunderground…well…ground.
WHERE: Nine Fine Irishmen, in New York, New York Hotel & Casino
Now, those who attended the party 5 years ago may be saying: “I don’t remember Nine Fine Irishmen being as big as City View was last year.” If you said that, you’d be correct. While we did have great plans for making this venue work with the much bigger attendance numbers, circumstances (see the preface paragraph) led to the venue being the right size after all.
WHO: 550 of our Sponsors and VMworld compatriots
Of course, timing is everything, and this reduced buyout of the venue has left us in a bit of bind with a double whammy.
WHEN: August 28th, 7-10 p.m.
Yes. That is the same time as the Inaugural VMUG Member Party. We have been talking to VMUG for months now trying to coordinate as best we can, but this was unavoidable. We’re excited to see them launch their own event and wish them the best of luck with it. I’m sure we’ll both have enough attendees given the size of VMworld.
HOW: Tickets. Yes…tickets.
Given the reduced size of the venue, paid tickets will be required to get in the door at the beginning of the party. We will be opening up an Eventbrite page to acquire tickets soon, so keep an eye/ear/Tweetstream open for more details very soon. We’re going to do a single process for Opening Acts, vBrisket, and VMunderground to make it as streamlined as possible. Be prepared:
- VMunderground will be charging $25 (see preface paragraph).
- vBrisket (lunch at Opening Acts) will have a $5 charge to their expenses.
- Opening Acts will remain completely free if you can resist the BBQ smell, but we still want get a count ahead of time, so please pick up a reservation even if you’re just planning on Opening Acts. We won’t restrict Opening Acts to only registered attendees, though.
Not the plans were were hoping for, but think of it this way: where else are you going to get a full BBQ lunch sandwiched in-between 4 hours of learning from your peers AND 3 hours of food and drink with the VMworld “who’s who” for only $30?
See you in Las Vegas!!
Plans are starting to come together, and we’re tired of sitting on some of this fun information, so here’s our first dump of official details.
As we revealed last week in our Planning Your VMworld 2016 Trip post, Opening Acts is on. We’ve had two good years of success running two panel stages concurrently to provide 3 hours with 6 sessions. One common complaint we’ve received: “Why do you make me choose between all these great panels?!” So, given this request and venue limitations in Las Vegas, we decided to play with the formula a bit this year.
For 2016, we’re going to run 4 panel sessions sequentially: Show up for the entire time and you’ll catch all the panely-goodness. This meant moving Opening Acts forward by an hour to noon, which put us into lunchtime. If there’s one thing we know will get conference-goers riled up, it’s food! As fate would have it, about the time we made this decision another great community group (who we’ve wanted to find a way to work with anyways) approached us about sponsoring lunch during Opening Acts.
Please join me in welcoming vBrisket to the Opening Acts family!!
That’s right! Opening Acts now offers you technical knowledge AND BBQ!
So here’s the schedule for Opening Acts on Sunday, August 28, 2016:
- 10:45am – The doors open
- 11:00am – Panel Session 1
- 12:00pm – Panel Session 2
- 1:00pm – BBQ lunch by vBrisket
- 2:00pm – Panel Session 3
- 3:00pm – Panel Session 4
- 4:00pm – Fin.
The panel sessions are still not defined yet. You still have time (assuming you’re reading this before May 31, 2016) to help us decide on topics (and possibly offer yourself up as a panelist). Just go fill out this form: https://docs.google.com/forms/d/1MtGcD3C4k2vGjvTPthgiyjONWrO1zx5gFrautroj6AA/viewform
Finally, if BBQ is your thing, the vBrisket team has an AWESOME opportunity available to both fill your mouth with meat (yeah, I know…) and help you get to Vegas right on time for Opening Acts. You should definitely check it out, especially if you live in Chicago, Kansas City, or Denver (or any points along that route). See all the details here: http://www.vbrisket.com/vbrisket-bus-tour-to-vmworld-2016/.
If you haven’t noticed, VMware has opened the registration for VMworld 2016 US; they’ve also opened the public session voting for breakout sessions. That means it’s also time to figure out your travel plans if you’re headed to Sin City…
The #vBrownBag and VMunderground teams were given a big challenge when VMware announced the change in venues from San Francisco to Las Vegas for 2016: we had a great, nearby location at the Metreon for our 8th and 9th VMunderground Party, plus two awesome years of increasing attendance and community interest and support for OpeningActs.
So: what to do, what to do…
I hope everyone is as excited as I am that we can officially announce that OpeningActs and VMunderground are GO for 2016. We had to make some adjustments to our previous model of using the same space for both the panel sessions and the party, while still staying in close proximity to the VMworld venue (ie, south end of the strip, near the airport), but we feel pretty happy with what we’ve got planned.
And yes, we’re a community of communities, so some additional shenanigans are in the works with other event teams (more details as we get closer!).
While exact schedules for VMworld are still under wraps—the Schedule Builder won’t go online until mid-July—we can confirm that our activities will occur on Sunday, August 28th. OpeningActs will run in the early afternoon (first panel should start around 11am) and the party will be later in the evening.
As usual, we’re going to be stingy with the final details until we get closer to the end of August, but we wanted to get these critical bits out to the world so that prospective attendees have the opportunity to plan accordingly.
I’m not quite ready to count down the days…
…oh hell. It’s [click here] days away.
After years of intense development, we’d like to announce that we’ve fully automated the WUPaaS. You now have access to an on-demand community networking event in a frictionless manner.
From its lowly origins in 2007, the VMunderground party has grown from a handful of like-minded members of the community to one of the largest community events of the week. In the course of our growth, we struggled to find venues that had the right capacity and location for the crush of attendees while staying fiscally responsible to our generous sponsor cadre. Ticketing was used as a means to provide some control, and each year, while trying to be as fair as possible, we still received negative feedback again and again…
We learned in 2014 that we finally found our perfect venue: it was close, it had plenty of room, it was “in budget.”
So in 2015, we’re going to try something old, going back to our roots…
Ticketing will not be required. The doors open to everyone at 8pm. As long as we stay below the Fire Marshall’s limit for the venue—and venue security handles that, not us—you will be admitted; we’re planning on over 1000 people, and we’ll serve food and drink as long as supplies last. When the last beer or cheesecake lollipop is gone, it’s gone…
VIP guests will still require a “backstage pass” to be admitted at 7:30. These passes are available from our sponsors; if you’re not interested in queuing up at 8pm, reach out to them to get special access.
You will still need to prove that you are 21 years old and are part of the VMworld community: Bring government-issue photo ID (e.g., driver’s license or passport) for proof of age. And seriously: it’s a VMworld social event. Wear your badge; it helps put names & faces back together after 1 or more years for many of us.
If you’re from San Francisco or surrounding “local” cities, you must have a VMworld badge so we know you’re not simply crashing the party…
See you on the 30th!!!
That’s right! VMware recently opened registration for VMworld 2015 US in San Francisco, and the VMunderground team is gearing up for another great year.
Based on the success of 2014’s inaugural OpeningActs collaboration with our friends over at #vBrownBag, we’ve started planning that event as well.
There isn’t a whole lot we can share yet, but the most important details—WHEN and WHERE—are known:
OpeningActs, the panel sessions, will run during the early afternoon of Sunday, August 30 at the Metreon City View. Yes, this is the same time and venue as last year!
VMunderground, the independent social event, will run after the Welcome Expo on Sunday, August 30, also at City View.
While some things will be the same as last year, we’re also working to improve; feedback we received from attendees and sponsors will shape those changes, and we’ll be reaching out to everyone—again, like last year—in order to make sure we build panel sessions for OpeningActs that will inform, entertain and delight.
With just over a couple of weeks to go, the members of our panel sessions are being finalized; here’s who we’ve got on board…
- Social Media/Careers (1pm)
- John Troyer (@jtroyer) moderator
Amy Lewis (@commsninja)
James Bowling (@vsential)
Jeramiah Dooley (@jdooley_clt)
Phoummala Schmitt (@exchangegoddess)
Gina Minks (@gminks)
- Storage (SDS & traditional) (1pm)
- Trevor Potts (@cakeis_not_alie) moderator
Michael Webster (@vcdxnz001)
Matt Vogt (@mattvogt)
J Metz (@drjmetz)
Keith Norbie (@keithnorbie)
Matt Cowger (@mcowger)
Wade Holmes (@wholmes)
- Networking (SDN & traditional) (2pm)
- Chris Wahl (@chriswahl) moderator
Tom Hollingsworth (@networkingnerd)
Joe Onisick (@jonisick)
Scott Lowe (@scott_lowe)
Lisa Caywood (@realLisaC)
Ryan Hughes (@angryjesters)
- Orchestration, Automation, & Optimization (2pm)
- Lauren Malhoit (@malhoit) moderator
Emad Younis (@emad_younis)
Mike Foley (@mikefoley)
Al Renouf (@alanrenouf)
Josh Atwell (@josh_atwell)
Luc Dekens (@lucd22)
- Cloud & General Virtualization (3pm)
- Leah Schoeb (@vleahschoeb) moderator
Stu Miniman (@stu)
Sean Clark (@vseanclark)
Stephen Foskett (@sfoskett)
Hugo Phan (@hugophan)
Aaron Delp (@aarondelp)
- Architecture & Infrastructure (3pm)
- Matt Liebowitz (@mattliebowitz) moderator
Melissa Palmer (@vmiss33)
Phoummala Schmitt (@exchangegoddess)
Maish Saidel-Keesing (@maishsk)
Mike Preston (@mwpreston)
John Arrasjid (@vcdx001)
You’ve already seen the posts about Opening Acts, so it’s finally time to pull back some of the covers on our EIGHTH presentation of The VMunderground. With the genesis of Opening Acts, we see this is a breakthrough year for community; with this beginning, we hope you agree that there are NO LIMITS to what we can accomplish!
We’re happy to announce that this year’s party will be held in the beautiful City View at Metreon (4th & Mission), making it—as promised—conveniently close to the main VMworld 2014 US campus at the Moscone. As in previous years, we’ve lined up a stellar group of sponsors—both new and returning—which will be revealed slowly as we get closer to the big date.
Enough of the tease! Here are the details we’re willing to share at the moment:
Who: Anyone with a VMunderground 2014 Wristband (more on that in a future post!)
What: A social event: food (heavy apps & desserty stuff, but don’t be “that guy”: eat a meal before you come!), beverages (soft drinks, beer & wine), great peers, great conversations!
Why: Shake off the rigors of travel to San Francisco and prepare for an exhausting week of the annual VMware love-fest!
Where: As indicated above: City View at Metreon
When: Sunday, August 24, 2014. 8pm to 11pm
How: Walk up; get checked in; have fun!
Keep an eye on this blog, and follow @vmunderground on Twitter for more information!