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The Voice of the DBA

Steve Jones is the editor of SQLServerCentral.com and visits a wide variety of data related topics in his daily editorial. Steve has spent years working as a DBA and general purpose Windows administrator, primarily working with SQL Server since it was ported from Sybase in 1990. You can follow Steve on Twitter at twitter.com/way0utwest

The SQLServerCentral Party

I think it went off well this year, and it looks like it will be around next year as well. My initial conversations with PASS have gone well, and I expect a contract as soon as the staff recovers from the Summit.

Pat Wright, former PASS Board member, and super-shutterbug, took a bunch of pictures at the party. As you can see, there were plenty of happy people there:

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I look a little confused in this one, but that’s probably because I felt a bit rushed at times. My main job was greeter, bouncer, doorman, so I didn’t get a lot of time in the event.

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We had a lot of walkups this year, and I’ll plan for more next year. I actually was under budget for the party, so I ended up buying about 30 Starbucks gift cards and giving them out to people during the conference.

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This was the second year in a row where we gave out the Exceptional DBA award. After a brief introduction from me, Brad McGehee (above) read a letter from Josef Richberg, the winner.  Gail Shaw then talked a little about what the award means:

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Next up was Rodney Landrum, with a few words about the judging.

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And then last year’s winner, Dan McClane.

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When the ceremony was done, we were back to gambling and having fun.

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I usually have some Red Gate folks walking around, giving out prizes to dealers throughout the night. they award people randomly during gameplay and everyone has a chance to win. At the end of the night, I’d saved off a number of prizes. We had 3 great ones, all about $150-200 in value, for the 3 big gamblers.

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We had a few other prizes left, and I decided to randomly give them out. Everyone could turn in their chips at the end and get a ticket from the casino people. I drew numbers out of a bin then and we gave away more great prizes.

I’m looking to run the same type of party next year, with lots more prizes, possibly fewer items and more random things at the end. I’ll also be looking to smooth out the event a little.

If you’ve got feedback, let me know. I’ve said it before, this is the best day of my year, and I’m hoping it’s a great one for you.

Comments

Posted by Tim Mitchell on 12 November 2009

Steve, I thought things went very well.  I was looking forward to this party and I wasn't disappointed, and others I talked to had a good time as well.

The only suggestions I would have is a little more floor space for all the people (a product of lots of walk-ups, I'm sure) and the Exceptional DBA ceremony ran a little long.  The random prizes were good, and there was a variety of games to play.  Great job to all of you for a successful event!

Posted by Steve Jones on 13 November 2009

Good to hear. I can request a little larger room next time, and might do a couple less tables for games. Try to get more interaction.

I'll also shorten the ceremony. I haven't been in charge of it or worried about it, but it was definitely long this year.

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