Another year and the Yalo team is preparing for SX…the ATX Austin Spring festival where interactive, music and film collide to celebrate. Once a year, the best minds in the industry come together to celebrate, inspire, innovate and share. The hype and energy on 6th Street alone can be felt through a Facebook live stream. Now just imagine that energy pulsing through the entire city of Austin, TX. It is yours for the taking as soon as you step off the plane.
Packing your bag and planning your adventure add to the excitement of 5 days of learning and exploring. As a veteran of the festival, I’ll share a few tips to make sure you’re ready for the full experience.
Check the weather. Sounds basic, but trust me it’s important. Nothing worse than getting off the plane in 90 degree Texas heat in a heavy clothing.
Pack light. Wear comfortable shoes for running around the city. Casual clothing, not a three-piece suit, but add some flair. (Note: Not this ‘flair’.) A portable charger will also come in handy for all your devices.
Relax, it’s Austin. Let’s be honest here, Austin is weird and people love it. This “festival” is not the stuffy conference where everyone is wearing the same black suit and don’t have a personality. Embrace it.
Chat with your drivers. You have to get from point A to point B. Ask the locals what they recommend, where to go/stay away from and what makes Austin great. It helps you get a feel for the city and people.
These are your people. EVERYONE in Austin, at this time of year, is here for the same reason. Have fun with it. You see someone drinking your favorite beer, tell them it’s your favorite beer. You could make a new friend, but you don’t know if you don’t try. CAVEAT: If you’re favorite beer is BUD LIGHT, you will be saying “Hi” to a lot of people and making a lot of new friends.
Target your experts. Plan your sessions, check your schedule and look up the speakers. If your hero is speaking, attend their session and soak up what they have to say. If you recognize them on the street or see them at an event, go up and say hello. They’re human (Just like you) and you won’t regret it.
Laugh out loud. There are some great comedians and shows that will have you wiping tears from your eyes in the first 15 minutes. Check your schedule and add a few if you enjoy them.
Party. Attend as many as you can and experience it all. Every venue is hosting something, register ahead of time or ask the person at the door to sign up. Definitely don’t miss Get Plugged In at Bat Bar on 6th. Register here. (You’re welcome.)
Hydrate. The heat, walking, and Texas BBQ will all dehydrate you. Trust me, 8 glasses a day will help you stay on your game.
Leave it on the plane. As soon as you land in ATX, leave the stress, doubt and nerves on the plane. Approach your stay in Austin with excitement and an open mind for learning and having fun. You will return home beyond tired, but reenergized with a new determination to make your next project the best ever.
Year 4 for Yalo and the buzz of heading to Austin never gets old. We have a feeling 2017 won’t let us down.