A BUCKET LIST ‘MUST’ – CD/TG CONFERENCES
For the ladies out there who for whatever reason never go out dressed we would say that one point on any bucket list should be attending a CD/TG conference at least once in your lifetime. Whilst there are many barriers to attending including work, family and financial constraints, access has become much easier over the years. For example, there are conferences virtually every month of the year throughout the United States so if you can only get away at certain times of the year you are almost sure to find something in the 12 month calendar to suit.
Whilst many conferences reported declining numbers during the height of the economic downturn, most if not all are now seeing increasing numbers year on year as a result of fine tuning their marketing and offers. In the past it may only have been possible to attend by signing up for the full conference, often outside the budget of many first-timers. However, many now offer varied packages at different price levels to attract as many attendees as possible. Our friend Jennifer has been in and out of work several times during the downturn of the last 5 years. Whilst this has certainly curtailed her dressing and how often she can go out she has been most appreciative of the lengths her favorite conference have gone to accommodate ladies in her current financial position. At the Erie Gala Jennifer has been able to attend just the Ball at the end which has meant she can at least attend and see many of the friends she can only meet once a year.
Some conferences are chock full of seminars, some are a balance of seminars and social activities and there are some where the conference/gathering is all just about the social aspect and you need to do your research to see which conference may be the best fit for you. Diva Las Vegas for example, is one of the fastest growing events in the calendar and this is just planned social activities in a fabulous location that offers so much to the community. Reach out to other girls on forums who are past attendees to see what they have experienced before you take the plunge.
If attending on your own don’t be afraid as there are many in the same boat and many conferences plan for this with ‘big sister’ programmes to ensure you have a fabulous experience. Make this the year to strike this one off the bucket list. You will find out so much about yourself and this part of your life, you’ll meet many new friends, learn a great deal and have the time of your life in your female guise.
From Southern Comfort in Atlanta GA, the mother of all conferences with over 800 attendees to First Event in MA all the official conferences are listed here. Checkout the websites and see which appeals to you. Ask previous attendees for their favorite’s and you’ll find varied opinions. If you like BIG with just about everything on offer you need then that’s Southern Comfort but if you want somewhere that includes all the pro’s of a great conference plus a great destination for CD/TG’s then that would be Fantasia Fair in Provincetown, RI where the whole town embraces the conference and makes the attendees feel welcome.
If you are going on your own then make sure you look for a ‘big sisters’ policy or similar and maybe even a smaller more intimate conference like Erie. If finances are a deal-breaker then make sure to look for the confereces that offer scholarships where if you qualify you can get to attend for all/considerable reduction in return for being a helper.
Good Luck, be brave and go and enjoy yourself. If you do go for the first time then please let us know your experience and we’ll post it in the newsletter.