What Are People Saying About Spousetivities

As you probably know, I started Spousetivities at VMworld 2008 in Las Vegas. With a few mentions on Scott Lowe’s blog, I managed to get the attention of 25 significant others that were also coming along on the trip to VMworld. Very informally, I arranged activities. We joined public tours (and suffered the dilemma of doing so), walked end to end on the Strip, and drove private/rental vehicles to the Grand Canyon (missing the VMworld Party because of it!). So why does any of this matter?

The point of this recap was to show where Spousetivities started and where it’s going. My life has really not been the same since VMworld 2008. I am learning and adjusting all the time. Spousetivities is quickly becoming a featured part of many technology conferences and is gaining the attention of the IT community. Some very prominent bloggers posted blogs about it, including Scott Lowe (who, of course, is my husband), Simon Seagrave (@kiwi_Si on Twitter), and Jonathan Franconi (see his blog post about Spousetivities). Even VMware has recognized the value in Spousetivities and is listing them on their VMworld Social Events page.

I have also been interviewed by some great people in the community. Many of you know and use products from Train Signal and I had the pleasure of being interviewed by Kasia during VMworld 2010. More recently, I had the pleasure of being a part of Coffee with Thomas and got to talk about Spousetivities and other things.

And while talking with others about Spousetivities is great, it’s even greater to hear about how Spousetivities has impacted the lives of conference attendees and their spouses/significant others. Take this recent tweet from @cwliner, for example:

“@scott_lowe I think my wife is more excited about #VMworld than I am! #spousetivities”

Or perhaps this recent tweet by Tom Howarth, aka @tom_howarth on Twitter:

“@scott_lowe #Spousetivities is going 2B a lifesaver 4 those of us who have traveled with our family. Well done @crystal_lowe 4 organising”

These are the sorts of comments that let me know what I’m doing with Spousetivities is making a difference for others. Bringing your spouse/significant other/parent/partner with you to VMworld this year? Why not sign them up and see if it can make a difference for you, too?


Spousetivities at VMworld 2011 is Open for Registration

I am pleased to announce that registration for Spousetivities is now open! If you have already registered, thank you! If you haven’t registered, I encourage you to register now.

One quick note: I have seen several people that have signed up only for the breakfast. This is completely fine; our Get to Know You breakfasts are always great fun. There is one thing I need to point out, though: if you plan to participate in other events as well, you cannot register for those at the breakfast. All registrations MUST be done in advance. Due to the size and popularity of Spousetivities, I have to sign contracts in advance and once they are full, I can’t add people at the last minute. So please register now so that you can maximize your time while keeping the budget under control.

The cooking classes are starting to fill up so if that interests you, don’t delay. All four nights will be different cuisine so feel free to register for more than one. The Grand Canyon, Hoover Dam, and Lake Mead are all generating a ton of interest as well.

I have been working hard on obtaining additional sponsors to continue to make Spousetivities affordable and offer the famous vWife t-shirts, gift bags, and giveaways. We now have 6 great sponsors on board! Please make sure to thank eGroup, EMC,  HP, HyTrust, Train Signal, and VMUG. I am also in negotiations with three other companies that are interested in supporting our events. I am so grateful to our sponsors and appreciate all they have done to make Spousetivities what it is today.

So what are you waiting for? Spousetivities always promises great activities with great people so go ahead and get that registration done so you can sit back and count down the days until we all head to Vegas to see old friends and make some new ones while enjoying cooking classes, river cruises, and scenic tours!


VMworld 2011 Planning Update

Hi folks! I know it’s been a while so I wanted to give everyone an update on how things are coming along for Spousetivities at VMworld in Las Vegas. I’ve added a new sponsor and negotiated a few contracts so keep reading for the latest details.

First, a quick update on sponsors. Of course we all know Spousetivities wouldn’t be what it is today without the support of our sponsors. I am pleased to announce that the VMUG (VMware User Group) is our latest sponsor. The VMUG team is anxious to jump in and lend a hand with making Spousetivities even better. I am very excited to have them on board! In addition to VMUG as a sponsor, we can also thank EMC, HyTrust, Train Signal, and eGroup for making Spousetivities happen at VMworld 2011. Stay tuned as I am also working with several other companies that are interested in supporting this fantastic program!

Now, on to the activities–the part everyone is waiting for! What will there be to do at Spousetivities during VMworld? Well, how does a professional cooking class sound? If the idea of a class sounds good, then the option to choose between 4 classes and be transported via limo should sound even better! That’s right, cooking classes will be offered every afternoon from 4:00 – 8:00 with a variety of cooking options from Vegetarian to American Classics to Weekend Gourmet. Space will be very limited so sign up fast. For those of you that haven’t been to Las Vegas before, there will be walking tours offered to see all of the “must sees” along the Strip. Of course, the Hoover Dam, Grand Canyon, and Lake Mead are all nearby so we can’t forget those activities. Already been to the Hoover Dam? No worries, how does a trip along Lake Mead on an authentic paddlewheel boat sound? Never been to the Grand Canyon or Hoover Dam? Guess what–you’ll have the opportunity for both during Spousetivities at VMworld. So all of this is great but what about some R&R? Don’t worry, I’ve got that covered! You will have the opportunity Tuesday, Wednesday, or Thursday to spend a few hours or the whole day at the Canyon Ranch Spa. There is something for everyone!

Can you handle one more bit of information? I’ve also arranged a couples’ overnight trip for Friday and Saturday. This trip will include pick up in Las Vegas followed by transportation via luxury motor coach to Williams, AZ. In Williams, you’ll get overnight accommodations and 2 meals. On Saturday, you will enjoy breakfast & entertainment, and then a train ride in superb accommodations to the Grand Canyon South Rim. After enjoying the unbelievable sights at the Canyon, you will board another luxury motor coach for your return to Las Vegas.

I am always open to suggestions (if nothing here appeals to you). With this vast array of opportunities, I hope everyone will find something that peaks their interest. Registration opens on Wednesday at 8:00 AM Eastern Time, so stay tuned and register early as spaces will fill quickly. I look forward to seeing everyone soon!


Why Sponsor Spousetivities?

With spouse activities for EMC World 2011 behind me and VMworld US 2011 right around the corner, I’m actively seeking additional sponsors for Spousetivities. So the question naturally arises: why should I sponsor Spousetivities?

Naturally, I’m a bit biased, but I think that sponsoring Spousetivities is a great way for companies to say “Thank You” and give something back to their employees and customers. When a company hosts a conference, they ultimately expect attendees to give up as much as a week of their time to come hear about their products and how these products or services can benefit them and their employers. Instead of asking attendees to come to a week-long conference and leave their families behind, a Spousetivities sponsor is telling attendees it’s OK to bring the family. While the attendee is learning about that sponsor’s products and innovations, the attendee’s family will be enjoying some great activities. And when the day is done, the attendee and his or her family can be together instead of spending that time apart. Most companies boast a family friendly attitude, and sponsoring Spousetivities is a way to show that attitude in action.

This is true not only for the sponsor companies–those companies that organized the conference–but for all companies. And the size of the company doesn’t matter; I’ve had companies both small and large decide to help sponsor Spousetivities.

In addition to supporting families, sponsoring Spousetivities offers companies a unique way to advertise. Given that their logo is put on T-shirts, menus, blogs, and other items, they have plenty of visibility in the community. Companies benefit not only from their pro-family support, but from the attention drawn to their company through these events. It’s a “win-win” situation for companies.

So, if you’re a company that wants to join in this exciting opportunity to support your employees and customers, and advertise in a unique way at the same time, simply contact me. Upcoming events include VMworld US 2011 and VMworld EMEA 2011, and I’m still seeking additional sponsors for either or both of those events. I can also plan activities for other conferences, VMUG’s, or company-hosted events. For more information, please contact me for arrangements.


EMC World Spousetivities Wrap-Up

First and foremost, I must send a huge thank you to EMC, eGroup, and Brocade for making the first ever EMC World Spousetivities a big success. We had more than 50 people in attendance at the various activities. The feedback was all positive and everyone had a great time.

Participants enjoyed breakfasts, shopping, sightseeing, a trip to Hoover Dam, and a relaxing spa day. The spa day was a huge hit and will most certainly be offered at future events. Guys and girls alike enjoyed this wonderful opportunity. Thank you so much to Debbie at Canyon Ranch Spa for making the spa day and breakfasts so stress free.

One thing that got everyone excited was the fabulous giveaways courtesy of our sponsors. The following is a list of all of our winners:

Sponsored by Brocade

  • $50 Amazon Gift Card – Denise Shaver
  • iPod Shuffle – Kelly Runyan-Heidler
  • Amazon Kindle – Mary Clearman

Sponsored by eGroup

  • iPod Nano – Josiah Peeples
  • iPod Touch – Trupti Palekar
  • iPad – Amy Saville

Sponsored by EMC

  • iPod Nano – Susan Arvoy
  • iPad – Kelly Petersen

With the success of the first EMC World Spousetivities, chances are very high that Spousetivities will return to EMC World in 2012! Hope to see you there!

Oh yes, and for those of you awaiting word on the new arrival to our family, our daughter gave birth to a healthy baby girl on Friday, May 13th. She weighed in at 9 lbs 2 oz. Check for pictures coming soon to the Spousetivities Facebook page: http://www.facebook.com/Spousetivities.


Registration Issues and Questions at EMC World

Thank you to everyone who has registered with Spousetivities. It is my pleasure to have you join in these events. I have worked very hard to make registration very simple and a smooth process. However, it has come to my attention that some people may still have questions or concerns about registration. Here are a few steps that will help make these events run smoothly.

  • Once you register online, please wait to receive a confirmation from Eventbrite. Once you receive this confirmation, review it and make sure there are no errors.
  • If you have received your confirmation but still have questions, please contact me directly as the EMC World event staff is not equipped to help with Spousetivities registrations.
  • The fastest way to reach me is via e-mail. Or, you may reach me via Twitter (@Spousetivities).

Again, thank you for participating in these events and I look forward to meeting each of you this week.


Time to Relax at EMC World

Are you bringing your spouse, friend, parents, or significant other with you to EMC World 2011? If so, treat them to a relaxing day at the Canyon Ranch Spa at the Venetian. Right now, if you book through the Spousetivities registration page, your guest can get one of several spa treatments at a 40% discount (courtesy of EMC Corporation). Spa options need to be booked by May 4th and are offered at this rate on Wednesday, May 11th only.

In addition to wonderful spa treatments, guests receiving the services get all day access to the spa facilities at no additional charge. For $90, you get a 55 minute service, all day access to the spa, and all day access to Aquavana™, the spa’s water oasis! For more details on what the spa has to offer, check out their page.

Remember, to receive this discount, you must register here. While you are signing up for these spectacular spa services, go ahead and check out the other great events happening too!


All EMC World Attendees Benefit from Spousetivities

I’d like to send out some exciting information from the Canyon Ranch Spa at the Venetian and Palazzo. Make your reservation now for one of their express services and mention Spousetivities to receive a $20 discount.

Brought to you by Canyon Ranch SpaClub & Spousetivities

Exclusive offer for EMC World 2011 Attendees

$20 off any Express Service

  • Express Tension Zone Therapy – $90 – This treatment is focused work using a variety of techniques to relieve muscle tension in the head, neck and shoulders. It can adjust to your needs.
  • Express Sole Rejuvenation – $90 – It’s solely about rejuvenation for overworked and tired feet! Our delightful sugary lemon foot polish by Naturopathica will soften and cleanse to prepare feet for a dedicated warming foot massage using Prossage gel. A cooling gel application of Biofreeze completes the service. This service is great for those who have been on their feet or as an alternative or reflexology.
  • Extremities (Head, Neck, and Feet) – $90 – For guests who love a great scalp massage, this services begins with focused work on the scalp, neck and upper shoulders, helping to restore circulation and relieve tension. Therapists then move to the feet and give each foot the pampering and attention they deserve! Tension Balm add-on is highly recommended!
  • Custom Facial – $90 – The express custom facial turns all of our facial enhancements into a targeted, custom treatment. This allows the guest that is pressed for time, to zone in on their area of most concern. Each treatment starts with a custom consultation, followed by cleansing, toning, custom treatment, moisturizer.

For reservations and information, please call Debbie Presta at 702.414.3904 or [email protected]. Have more time? Ask about the 50 minute upgrade special.

Remember, this is good for all attendees of EMC World as well as Spousetivities participants so make your reservation now! You do not need to register with Spousetivities for this offer. All you have to do is mention Spousetivities when you make your reservation. This offer is good the whole week of the conference (May 8 – 14th).

For a list of services offered at Canyon Ranch Spa click here: http://bit.ly/gBd0Xb

(Canyon Ranch SpaClub is on the 4th floor of The Venetian and the 3rd floor of The Palazzo. Valid for 25 minute Express Services Spa services. Salon and retail not included. Must be 18 or older. May not be combined with any other offer. Based on availability.)


Extra Chances to Win Great Prizes at EMC World 2011

Still haven’t registered for Spousetivities at EMC World 2011? Well here is a great reason to register now! Everyone that registers for activities before April 25th will get an extra entry per activity in the drawing for these great prizes. After April 25th, registrants will get one entry per person, not per activity so don’t miss these extra chances at fantastic prizes.

As a reminder, our wonderful sponsors have enabled you to win prizes like iPods, iPads, gift certificates, and Kindles. Make sure you or the attendee stop by our sponsors—EMC, Brocade, and eGroup—and thank them for making all of the Spousetivities giveaways and events possible.

Remember, the drawings will be held at the breakfast events so make sure you register for those while you are checking out all the other exciting activities. There is still room for all activities so don’t delay because spaces are limited.

So what are you waiting for? Register now and get those extra chances at the great prizes!


Win Cool Stuff at EMC World 2011

As anyone who has participated in Spousetivities knows, we have the best sponsors. This year for EMC World–thanks to EMC, eGroup, and Brocade, our sponsors–everyone registering for the breakfasts and at least one activity has the opportunity to win some great prizes. In fact, Spousetivities will be giving away over $1500 in prizes! Who doesn’t like winning prizes?

Thanks to Brocade, attendees could win a $50 shopping certificate, an iPod shuffle, or an Amazon Kindle.

Likewise, thanks to EMC for the opportunity to win a 32GB Wi-Fi iPad. Of course, EMC is also the sponsor of our welcome and farewell breakfast events.

Finally, eGroup is giving attendees yet another shot at a 32GB Wi-Fi iPad or an iPod Touch.

This means attending Spousetivities not only gives you some great activities at reduced costs during the conference, but also the chance to meet some fantastic people and win prizes. Good fun, tasty food, great people, and awesome prizes–what more could you ask for?

Drawings for these items will be held at the breakfast events so don’t delay–go to the registration page and get signed up now!