I am excited about the Food Allergy Bloggers Conference (aka FABlogCon) #FABlogCon in Las Vegas, September 26-28, 2014 and highly recommend it if you are interested in food allergies or blogging about life with a restricted diet. I’m going to cut to the chase and share my top 10 reasons to attend while sharing a little bit about my experience along the way.
Here are my top 10 reasons to attend FABlogCon!
10. Everyone is welcomed regardless of whether you are a parent, a brother, or a grandmother of someone with food allergies. FABlogCon attracts a very strong community of people who get what we go through every day. You don’t have to be a blogger or a professional because Jenny Dare Mitchell Sprague and Homa Woodrum, founders of FABlogCon, have created an event that caters to everyone.
9. You have choices on what you want learn from the conference. The sessions are organized into two tracks and you can choose to participate in food allergy or blogger related sessions. The food allergy/medical track will equip you with information, knowledge, and support from leading food allergy experts. The blogger/writer track will equip you with information to help you with all things related to communication regarding food allergies. And there’s flexibility to switch back and forth between the two tracks to suit your interests.
8. Experience the amazing food and hospitality by South Point Hotel Casino and Spa. How do 100+ people with food allergies and intolerances eat together? Chef Keith Norman is incredible and renowned for his innovative leadership in teaching others in the restaurant industry to cater to those with food allergies. He is in charge of the delicious and allergy safe foods and you can sign up for a behind the scenes tour during one of the breakout sessions.
7. Engage with representatives of your favorite food allergy organizations and businesses: FAACT, FARE, Kids With Food Allergies, Snack Safely, and many others. It is a wonderful opportunity to connect with them, ask questions, and let them know what impact they have on your life.
6. The raffle prizes are amazing! Last year I won a gorgeous epi case from Epi-Essential and love it, but the conference also gave away a Vitamix and a KitchenAide mixer among other amazing prizes. #FABlogCon tip: bring a big suitcase!
5. The vendors and swag rock. I loved meeting representatives of different companies that cater to those on restricted diets and learning more about their products. Two bags of swag, enough said!
4. Meet your favorite food allergy heroes and heroines: I was delighted to meet many of the doctors, advocates, writers, authors, and bloggers that I respect so much. And just when I thought I knew everyone, I also met new friends and was in awe of their incredible stories of courage and grace under pressure.
3. Expand your horizons. It’s amazing to meet others who are the same but slightly different. There were other people in attendance who have other medical conditions that require a special diet. I met people who are vegan, who developed adult onset food allergies, and who have a gluten free diet due to celiac disease.
2. Be inspired. Do you have an idea or is there something that you want to do about food allergies? I had the idea for this blog for a long time but didn’t know how to start and it wasn’t until I attended the conference that the pieces needed to make it happen came together. I’m so excited to attend again this year as this newbie blogger who still has much to learn.
1. Build friendships. It was amazing to finally meet friends that I know only virtually from online food allergy support groups and to exchange hugs, share meals, and chat like long lost friends. The support, friendship, and sense of community among the FABulous attendees at the conference are filled with warmth, laughter, and great joy in being together. There is no other place where you will find so many people dealing with the same food allergy issues as you who are coping well and empowered. The strength and unity in the food allergy community are priceless and I hope that you will decide to come.
Many thanks to Freedible hosting their Twitter party last week. It was such a fun time to connect with old and new friends that attended! And I am so thrilled to win a ticket, thank you! I was torn between using the ticket for myself or giving it away and Jenny and Homa offered a free ticket for me for a give away. Whoo-hoo for me and Nut Free Wok readers! I am so amazed to see how things have cone full circle, where I attended the conference last year with little expectation on how the conference would impact my life and now I have a the opportunity to share this incredible experience with you!
I want to give this ticket to a Nut Free Wok reader that connects with this blog or someone who really wants to go but needs a little help, so I’m going to ask for a tiny bit of effort in order to enter rather than holding an automated giveaway. To enter, you need to write a short paragraph (150 words or less) about how my blog has helped or positively impacted you or your family OR write a short paragraph (150 words or less) about why you want to attend FABlogCon. Since winning the ticket will require you to provide your own transportation and accommodations, it is a commitment on your part to attend and I want your entry to be a thoughtful process. I won’t be judging your entries on the merits of what you write, I will just put your names into a hat and draw a name out of a bag. Please read the giveaway rules carefully on how to enter.
For more information visit FABlogCon’s homepage to see this year’s agenda, break out sessions, guest speaker line up and registration information. You can also see links to last year’s event. Everyone is welcomed and please register ASAP!
This giveaway begins August 18, 2014 and ends at 9 pm (PDT) on Sunday, August 24, 2014. The prize is one free ticket to FABlogCon 2014. Winner will provide their own transportation, lodging, and other expenses. Winner will be available during the conference dates September 26-28, 2014. All entries must include an email address with their entry and the winner has 24 hours to accept the prize via email, otherwise another winner will be chosen. In the event that a winner declines the giveaway or does not respond within 24 hours, another winner will be chosen. All applicable taxes are the responsibility of the winner. Void where prohibited.
How to enter:
Option 1: Write a paragraph (150 words or less) about how my blog, Nut Free Wok, has helped you or your family. You will have one entry. OR
Option 2: Write a paragraph (150 words or less) about why you want to attend Food Allergy Bloggers Conference. You will have one entry.
You may have two entries if you answer both options and write about how NFW has helped you AND why you want to attend FABlogCon (needs to be two separate paragraphs, entered as two separate comments, no more than 150 words each).
Submit your email address and paragraph(s) by posting a comment below. Comments shared via Facebook, other social media, or email will not be accepted. Your privacy is important and your email will not be shared or sold, except to notify the Food Allergy Bloggers Conference that you are a winner. By entering, you agree to all of the rules above and agree that your name and/or your entry may be published and/or quoted in the future by representatives of Nut Free Wok and/or FABlogCon without further obligation.
UPDATE: The giveaway has concluded! Congratulations to the winner, Louise Larsen! Thank you to everyone who entered and participate. I hope many of my Nut Free Wok readers will consider registering and attending anyways for incredible opportunities to learn and share.
I won a ticket courtesy of Freedible.com and FABlogCon provided an extra ticket for me to give away. All opinions about the conference are my own.