My experience at last year’s ALA Annual Conference in Washington, DC, was guided by the 2 credit course I took with Scott Nicholson, IST 600: Leadership and Organizations. Scott gave us some tips and required us to meet with a leader in the field at the conference. I met with Sari Feldman, Executive Director of the Cuyahoga County (Ohio) Public Library, who has since been elected PLA vice-president.
Another perk of having taken that course in preparation for the ALA Annual Conference was that hotel accommodations were included with participation in the course.
Friday, June 22
I got to the hotel later than expected. There was a mix up from either the university or the hotel, but all was well 20 minutes later. One thing I didn’t do, as others suggest as well, is to check hotel reservations prior to arriving.
When I arrived, I met my roommate, Dawn Cadogan, shortly after making it to my room. We went to the Washington Convention Center via the metro to get our badge holders (and Dawn’s badge).
When we got there, we discovered that many, many, many people had the same idea. It was crowded, but the lines moved quickly. There must’ve been hundreds of people ahead of me, but it took less than 15 minutes to get to the head of the line. Once I got there, I was greeted warmly and taken care of quickly.
By that point, it was already late and we were hungry. We entertained the thought of going to the Film and Libraries program, but our hunger won out. Near the registration booths, Dawn, her coworker, and I found another booth we put to great use. ALA offered dining suggestions. We asked the lady behind the booth where we could find good food at decent prices, and we were directed towards Chinatown. (It was really helpful as none of us knew our way around DC.)
We went out to eat at Tony Cheng’s in Chinatown (right near the Convention Center), and by the time we were done, it was too late for the film program. We wandered around Chinatown for a while and then came back to our hotel. Continue reading