(disclaimer - this is "knitter Tasha" talking, not "board member Tasha" - as if I'm ever anything other than "knitter Tasha")
So, I'm pretty sure I haven't talked about this on my blog, but this year I am on the board of DFW Fiber Fest. This knitting event has a place near & dear to my heart. We are in our 6th year, so this was the very first fiber event that I ever attended. For Valentine's Day 2006 Patrick got me a full weekend of classes. I was such a new knitter - I had only been knitting for about 8 months. I took 6 classes in 3 days. Do I need to explain to you how big of a deal that was for a brand new knitter?
I felt a little nostalgic as I read my posts from that time period. Before I went. Immediately after I returned. (I'm happy to say that Alissa Barton is still putting up with my stupid questions & mistakes, as well as my not so stupid questions & mistakes). A post about my dyeing class. ANYWAY, I've been every single year since they have started & I have been there for the whole thing other than the 2 years I was a Disney with my nieces (their Easter break) and last year I even left Disney half a day early & came straight from the airport at noon to go to my 2PM class. I met some of my best knitting friends there that first year. The event continues to grow & while some people think because we "aren't as big as Stitches" or that our classes don't sell out in 15 minutes that it can't be all that. I assure you, it's so much fun. I've been to some big events & this still remains on the top of my list as a favorite.
The benefits of it being a smaller venue are apparent. You get more face time with teachers, shopping is fairly easy - it's rare to feel claustrophobic & crowded even at really popular booths. All of the people - friends or not - are so friendly and open, it's hard to find anyone that isn't just happy to be there. I guess you can say that about most knitting events, but I truly mean it. It's in my back yard & rather I was involved or not, I could never imagine not supporting a local event that brings National & local teachers together for a weekend of learning & yarn buying! If you have never been, you should come, no matter where you live. Every year it keeps growing & growing & growing - it is our goal to never get it so big that it loses what makes it so special.
What sold me being on the board was that I got to work with the Vendors. We have a lot of repeat vendors coming but the new larger venue has allowed us to expand the vendor hall to some new to us vendors. We took a lot of time balancing the needs, wants, and feedback of past students to create a good mix of vendors. I have to say, it's a lot of work. It's been a lot of fun. I truly hope it all turns out as I have envisioned it.
If you are in the Dallas area, please come see us. If you aren't & you would need to travel, consider coming next year. It just keeps getting better!