ALA Annual 2011 Day…4?!

ALA Annual 2011 LogoSo, yeah…guess I overestimated the amount of time I’d have to document all the things I’m doing with my time. Therefore instead of my schedule, I’ll give you a recap of what I’ve been doing so far.

Saturday morning internship presentations went great. There are some seriously motivated and talented  students in our program. I was so impressed with the work everyone has done.

Afterwords several of us decided to grab lunch at Pier 424 on Bourbon St. I ate my first real New Orleans meal, and it was awesome! Then it was on to Café Du Monde for café au lait and beignets. By the time we got back to Canal St. to catch the shuttle to the conference center it was nearly 4:00 – I was seriously shocked. Where had the day gone?! I started at the Confronting the Future session, but it wasn’t holding my attention. So I moved on to The Future is now! E-books and their Increasing Impact on Library Services, but it was so packed there was already a crowd of people standing outside the door. (Luckily a staff member informed us that the session was being recorded and would be available online.) I tried to check out the  Public Programs that Work in Rural Libraries session, but by the time I got there it was well underway and the doors were closed. Even though they told us it’s okay to show up late, I feel like opening a closed door is really disruptive. So I decided to spend some time in the exhibit hall instead, where I met up with a classmate and got the chance to meet Nancy Pearl. 🙂

Saturday night I skipped both scheduled social events and went to check out Frenchmen St. with the SLIS group. We had dinner at The Praline Connection then enjoyed drinks and music at Three Muses where we heard Kristina Morales and the Bayou Shufflers as well as St. Louis Slim and the Frenchmen Street Jug Band.

Yesterday, I was up bright and early to catch Joe Murphy‘s  Going Mobile @ your library: How Libraries Can Serve Mobile Phone Users. He made a great point about being a survivor versus being a victim. No one wants to invest in victims. As librarians we have to stop whining about the state of our libraries and start earning the support of our communities by being survivors. His presentation materials can be found on his blog. Great stuff!

Yesterday afternoon I sat in on the Top Technology Trends discussion. A few of the trends/predictions mentioned include mobile apps, Drupal, social reading, improved web accessibility, and the death of the mouse.

Last night started at the Indiana University SLIS alumni reception at the Westin. It was a beautiful venue, and I had the opportunity to meet a fellow alumna how has been working as a librarian in Sudan. She had amazing (and scary) stories to tell. She also encouraged all of us to consider looking for jobs at American schools abroad, something I hadn’t even considered a possibility. She suggested checking out TIE Online for listings if you’re interested.

From there we went to the Chartres House Cafe for a drink, then took the trolley to the Hack Library School Meetup at The Avenue Pub. I met so many awesome librarians! It was…refreshing. 🙂

Finally I caught a cab to The Howling Wolf to see the Hot 8 Brass Band, drink some Abita Restoration Ale, and meet up with even more awesome librarians! It was a great night!

Today was all about books. Woohoo! I started at the ALTAFF President’s Program where Marilyn Johnson gave an encouraging and uplifting talk. I was also able to get my copy of This Book is Overdue! signed (and managed to pick up another copy for a very dear friend!). Then I headed down to the exhibit hall to hear the funny and talented Eleanor Brown at the Live! Reading Stage. I even got a free signed copy of The Weird Sisters, which sounds amazing. I can’t wait to read it! After doing some final exhibit browsing and picking up a few discounted paperbacks, it was back to the hotel to rest up for tonight (and write this post). The plan is to check out Papa Grows Funk at The Maple Leaf.

Whew! So you’re all caught up now. Tonight is my last night in New Orleans (sniff, sniff). I’ll be flying back home to Indianapolis right after the closing session tomorrow. It really has been a great few days. New Orleans has been a friendly and accommodating host. I can’t wait to come back and visit again!



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