MAGICAL MYSTERY TOUR – CAPTAIN’S LOG
First, a little more background, and what this particular adventure is all about. Inquiring minds have asked, so to clarify…
4/20/13 – See my previous blog about the happy-ending kidnap. Since then, I kept in touch with my captors and was introduced to new peeps through them and social media. Friendly faces, names and comments kept cropping up, becoming more familiar.
10/2013 – Then, Blog Tour creator Veronika Miller, of Modenus fame, contacted me about the possibility of joining them. She has this magic about combining the design world – designers, manufacturers and social media around the globe. (See the Modenus website link to understand more about this one-of-a-kind industry pioneer and why I was so excited.)
BLOG TOUR PRESENTER
(She’s done many blog tours nationally and internationally; here’s a fun overview about this one.)
BLOG TOUR SPONSORS
The sponsors were all manufacturers I’ve loved and spec’d in for years!
It read like the Who’s-Who-Of-Designers-Just-Pinch-Me-All-Star Team-List
(And we’re not talking Las Vegas show girls here)
A little perspective: I’ve attended the Kitchen and Bath Industry Show (KBIS) for about 20 years, on and off, but this would be a whole new take. Not only would I be attending with a new group and purpose, it was a whole new show. I ‘d already planned on attending but this would be a game changer. What a combo – Blog Tour Vegas – KBIS/IBS 2014!
* First time ever (after 50 years) the two major industry shows joined forces at a co-location!
* KBIS (Kitchen and Bath Industry Show, sponsored by the National Kitchen and Bath Association) is the world’s largest international trade event for the kitchen and bath industry.
* IBS (International Building Show, sponsored by National Home Builders Association) is the largest building trade show.
* A record-breaking 77,000 people attended
* Over 2000 displays stretched over 600,000 sf.
* Together, performing for the first time ever…in Vegas… the mega event: “Design and Construction Week”!!
THE BLOG TOUR GROUP
(Now combine Blog Tour, Vegas, KBIS/IBS – shake, stir)
12/2013 – When I was officially invited to join Blog Tour Vegas, I was sent bios of the other bloggers invited to this tour. Many are Blog Tour alum who’ve been on many tours here and abroad. Holy #!+* – how did I get to be a part of this great crew? Note to self: Count blessings, feel humbled, knock on wood. Greetings and welcome notes flew. I was all a-Twitter.
BLOG TOUR – DAY #1
– 3am – Finish blog entry. Those who know me, know I’m like a moon howling coyote. (I told you, Lisa Mende)
– 11am – Leave for airport, offered first-class bump, no security check and found change on the floor while waiting at the Las Vegas baggage claim. I shamelessly scooped it up, took it as a continued lucky sign and walked 10 feet to the nearest slot machine…which I NEVER do. Sometimes, you just have to listen to the Universe. I was collecting my small (but symbolic) winnings, when I was tapped on the shoulder by my chauffeur. Ohhh, this is a good start.
– 3pm – Get the call that my new website had launched, complete with blog and new logo (thanks to Anish VonAhlefeld)! After many months of hard work, start and stop, we have a very timely lift off! Check it out: Rhonda Knoche Design.
– 4pm – Check into the Cosmopolitan Hotel. Would I like an up-grade to a suite (for next to nothing)? No thanks. I’m already feeling guilty, thanks to my German Protestant up-bringing, about the flight up-grade, finding money I didn’t earn and the premium hotel with two queen sized beds to myself.
6pm – Meet up at the Cosmopolitan’s rooftop restaurant, Comme Ca.
And THAT’S where the fun really began! Equipped with photos and bios in my head, like mental flash cards, I tried to match them up from nothing more than a previous connection via The Cloud. Just a few I had met before, some only by phone or email but most of them, I was meeting for the first time in the flesh. Most were tour alumni but this was my maiden voyage. Every single one made it feel like a Homecoming Event with open arms. We did intros, had a fabulous meal and did orientation for the action packed days ahead of us. It’s so exciting and the show hadn’t even begun yet. Much, much more to follow!