- Adit Modi
Planning for AWS Community Day Vadodara 2022
A little background of AWS Community in Vadodara
Vadodara's AWS Community has existed there for a while. Due to the pandemic, All activities had shifted to online mode, I appreciate the work of the core team, which includes (Nilesh, Nirmal, Manan and more) for giving their time and helping the community. At the time, I was an AWS Community Builder and quite involved in the community. The speakers prepared for the very first meetup were excellent, but owing to other job obligations I was unable to attend all of the online gatherings.
After the pandemic subsided, the AWS user group Vadodara began holding monthly offline meetups. After my trip to Europe, I joined their monthly event. I thoroughly loved it and made the decision to attend future meetups on a regular basis.
In the following four to five months, Nirmal, Ravi, and Manan helped organize the gatherings by attending relatively frequently. They took care of a few gatherings without Nilesh, and I spoke on a few AWS-related topics on this platform as well. The AWS community expanded quickly. The meeting page quickly surpassed 1,000 followers, and we soon had attendance of between 40 and 50 people at each event that was planned throughout the months.
Nilesh's efforts led to Vadodara being offered the chance to host the country of India's first-ever community day in the month of November 2022.
The planning phase
We began creating the user group's social media presence as we were setting up the meetups. The first thing we believed we should do was plan how to use social media effectively. I joined the core team and assumed control of the social media.
It's not at all simple to plan an event where we anticipate 500+ attendees. These are the significant items that we worked on:
- Identify a location that will work well for technical conferences and have space for at least 500 people. The organization of food on the conference day.
- Choosing a ticketing partner for the event tickets. [Serving breakfast, lunch, and snacks to more than 500 people is a difficult undertaking]
- Publishing the conference's call for papers
- Seeking out sponsors for the event
- Planning the logistics for items like LED screens and audio equipment for multi-track events. In the end, we chose to delegate the task to an event management team.
- Creating social media banners, participant giveaways, volunteer t-shirts, speaker mementos, etc.
- As is typical for community-driven events, one individual takes the initiative, and others rally around him or her. It was Nilesh in our situation. He used his relationships in this industry to manage the majority of the ticketing and sponsorship tasks.
- Finding a location that could hold this many people and have adequate facilities to be able to feed so many people was a difficult undertaking. The two options available to us were to search for sizable hotels with banquet rooms and the ability to offer culinary services or employ universities for event planning. Special thanks to Vrajesh for helping to get the Venue and to GSFC University for supplying it.
Setting up the Website
- When Ravi was given that assignment, he truly worked hard to improve the website as a whole.
Selecting ticketing partner
- This was an obvious choice. The community had a terrific experience utilizing Konfhub's platform because it was used for all other community activities. We ended up using the same. We started selling tickets to the event from Sept 2022. Vrajesh started work on that.
Call for papers
We started accepting proposals for talk in September 2022 via PaperCall.io. The response was huge. We had 12+ people speaking at our conference from diverse geographies.
The Call for papers were live on Papercall.io
Looking out for sponsors
- The hardest part is right here. With assistance from the AWS design team, we developed a standard PPT deck and leveraged our connections to get in touch with corporations and startups that could be interested in sponsoring our event. The hardest thing was getting sponsors, and we were still working on it two weeks before the event. Fortunately, we received the anticipated number of sponsors, and our conference expenses were therefore easily paid. It was worked on by Manan, Nilesh, and Nirmal.
Procuring things required for event
- LED displays or projectors, collar microphones for speakers, handheld microphones for anchors, stage lighting, banners of sponsors, and a ton of other items are required for tech events. Like you, we are general IT users, therefore it made logical to hire the professionals that specialize in this area. Ravi got in touch with these businesses. Sanket and Keshav made huge contributions to collecting everything.
Procuring things required for event
- The last step was to purchase items like lanyards, name cards, T-shirts, mementos, and so forth. The majority of the time and effort is wasted on these little things [Nilesh would heartily agree here]. Up until the night before the event, all of these things were still under construction.
A special thanks to my social media team Keshav, Sanket and Ved for helping out with everything.
There are many things that I have yet to cover, but I will in a future blog post when I explain the specifics of the event day. There are numerous other things that this blog post is unable to discuss. The planning of the meeting involves numerous moving pieces. People like me, Nilesh, Nirmal and others participate entirely out of a sense of duty to the community and are in no way paid by anyone associated with the event (AWS, Sponsors, etc.). I thus ask that the next time you see a volunteer-driven event, you show some consideration for the organizers by refraining from criticizing them when something goes wrong.
I hope you had a great time at AWS Community day Vadodara. The intention of the post is to highlight the hard work people do behind the curtain. To all the unsung hero’s !
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