This post is going to be ridiculously long. Those without broadband are going to hate me. Anyway, I spent Tuesday and Wednesday in San Fransisco for Inman Bloggers Connect. I flew in super early on Tuesday to meet up with some online friends, see the sights, and then head out to a couple pre-conference parties. Wednesday was the official Blogger’s Connect Event, and I flew back out that night. The conference itself was excellent, but the real reason I came was to turn the many online connection I forged into personal one. These pics, like this blog, are about the bloggers who attended more than the show itself.
Pat brought us to Alamo Park and presented us with one of San Fransisco’s most famous views.
The Painted Ladies with the SF skyline in the background
We met up with Joe and Rudy, who found a parking spot for the blogmobile in Golden Gate Park. Teresa kept saying she prefers to keep her face off the internet, yet look how she’s sneaking her way into this shot! :p If you look close, you can see the Blog Fiesta sign I made for the Denver Event. It’s destined to be auction on E-bay. I also took this opportunity to sign the BlogTourUSA board. As busy as I was at Blog Fiesta in Denver, I never had the chance, and was kicking myself for it later.
We left the blogmobile and all piled into Pat’s car for some more sightseeing. Our first stop was the Palace of Fine Arts Theater.
Rudy is trying to interview a duck, “What’s a blog? Do you use Zillow?” It’s been a long trip.
More face time on the camera for Teresa!
Next Stop was the Golden Gate Bridge. Other way Joe.
I never get tired of seeing it. It’s simply fantastic.
Joe and Rudy’s “snap a pic of everything” attitude fits right in in San Fransisco.
Pat took us to lunch a Pho Phu Quoc.
Pat lays out his latest consulting venture to Joe.
Rudy listens in.
Lunch! I got the Number 5, and It was good.
Joe proves to me that you can eat soup with chopsticks.
Pat decides to tempt fate by parking his Mercedes SUV in Haight Ashburry
“Hey, do you guys sell bongs?”
Joe called this, “the original Craig’s List”.
Pat dropped us all back at the RV. Rudy gave Teresa and I a ride back to the Hotel. Just as we were about to get underway, Rudy noticed a bunch of house shaped post it notes on the RV. Some of the folks from Zillow were playing tag. I’m not sure if Rudy was pointing out the notes, or letting us all know what he thought of Zillow. 😉
After I got back to the Hotel, I walked around a bit, went by CompUSA and checked my email. I figured I better make note of the directions to the Trulia party.
Zillow put on the first get together, “Beer with bloggers” at the Thirsty Bear. I ran into Jim Duncan, a long time blogger and online friend. He was one of the first to be interviewed for this blog. I also got to meet Jim Cronin, Frances Flynn Thorsen, Mary McKnight, Laurie Manny and Brand Inman.
This was the highlight of the trip for me. Dustin Luther is my oldest Internet friend. We used to swap emails about real estate blogging before just about anyone but our families were reading our blogs. Well over two years, and way overdue to meet in person.
I never could figure out who this guy was.
I think Rudy knows him.
Everyone spills into the street to stumble over to the Trulia party. Pat is shooting the breeze with Noah Rosenblatt and his wife. Ardell and her husband(? I can’t remember exactly) are in the foreground.
John Collins was the venue for the Trulia Party. It was beyond packed out. Note to VC backed companies who want to host blogger parties at the next Bloggers Connect. Get a really big fricken room. RE Blogging is blowing up!
The crowd was too much for me, so I decided to hang out outside for a while. It worked out great as I got a chance to chat with Caleb Mardini, Joel Burslemm, Christian Sterner, Brian Brady and Jim Duncan among others. I also met Odis Jack Gillard, a San Fransisco local, and as friendly as you could ever hope a stranger to be.
The crowd thinned to a tolerable level. Among others, I talked to Chad Johnson and Sarah Field from My Tech Opinion, met Jeff Corbett and Jonathan Washburn for the first time, caught up with the crew from Lux (they were at my Denver event), and met Sara MacLennan and Sheldon Johnston of the Edmonton Real Estate Blog.
It was also great to see Dan Green in person. Dan has been blogging on the retail side of the mortgage industry for as long as I have been covering the wholesale/industry side. Dan’s blog is top notch.
Here’s a pic I snapped as I walked back to the hotel. To me, this is how I think of San Fransisco.
I ran into Justin Smith and his father Wednesday morning. We chatted over breakfast. I ended up sitting with them for most of the show. Between Welcome Mat, Lux, CREN, and myself, I think Denver was pretty well represented.
ConnectSF is underway! Joel did an excellent job of putting the event together. Inman had a tremendous turnout. If you were hoping for me to give a play by play of the event content, sorry. You’ll just have to be in New York this winter when we do this again.
Kevin Boer, and his panel were particularly entertaining.
Jessica Swesey hosted a great panel on social networking. Though meeting all these bloggers in person was evidence to me that online networking will never replace the real thing.
The Project Blogger team takes a bow.
Jonathan Washburn oversees the contest festivities.
Joseph Natividad has to be the youngest RE.net blogger to date. He’s only 18 and a contributor the The Harper Team Blog.
I also tried to snap as many pics of the bloggers I met as possible. Here’s a few.
Kevin and Joel
Jeff Turner and Pat
Brian Brady (yes, he was wearing suspenders) sitting next to Cheryl Johnson
Paul Cheney , who live blogged throughout the event. Paul interviewed me for his book, and it was great to meet him in person.
Larry & KathleenCragun, look for a spotlight interview soon.
The crowd. For much of the day, it was standing room only.
One of my favorite pics. Well over a hundred people blogging, twittering, texting, taking notes, taking pictures, videotaping, and voice recording the event. Dustin is just kicking back, and taking it all in.
As the event raps up, Jessica and Joel took a second for a quick group photo. I really enjoy working with both of them on the Inman Blog.
Erik Hersman, of Realty Thoughts. was also in the audience taking pics. I’ll be checking out his blog for more. Erik was another great blogger to meet in person.
One last shot with Joe and Rudy then I was off to catch a plane.
If you were a blogger who was kicking yourself for not going, Brad Inman announced that they will be doing this again this winter in New York. Go, you won’t be sorry. Just meeting these folks in person was worth the price of admission.