I have never been to an ICES convention before but this year it is close enough that I can commute and save money on lodging.
I would like to take a couple of hands on classes and some demos too but I feel a bit like a kid in a candy store deciding which to take. Also Im afraid that the ones I request might be sold out and I end up with nothing. Id appreciate advise from anyone whos been thru the process before.
Im interested in taking: Kim Morrison Mexican Paste Cup and Saucer Set, Bronwyn Weber Hand Modeling Faces, and D. Simmons & M. Stidham Gelatin Butterflies & Flowers. Does anyone have experience with these teachers?
Also, I understand on the last night, the demos are done again and I might get a chance to make up one I missed: is that true?
Thanks in advance for your help. I just lost my job and although I do still want to go, I need to make it as economically productive as possible.
I am plan to attend the ICES convention too but my husband was layed off. To save money I plan to stay with friends/relatives and take the subway to the convention center.
Someone mentioned to me to look at the list of demos and take the demos that you are interested. Also read the demo descriptions you want to learn
Since I work with vegan and raw vegan cakes at the bakery I do not plan to take gumpaste classes or fondant classes .
Read the Ices website for mor specific info.
If any cc members can give us newbies tips for attending our first convention it would help. Especially how to cut costs. Is it best to shop with the vendors on Saturday or Sunday?
I read you should make a list of items you have before you attend the convention.
Has any cc Chicago members been to Pheasant Resort or is there a cheaper place to stay?
Is there eating places near the resort? It can get expensive eating at the hotel?
Do you recommend attending the Wilton Tour and French Culinary tour?
How about hands on classes? What is the weather like during the summer in Chicago? Hot or Humid?
Any input will help from experienced ICES convention attendees. Thank you for your time
looks like us 2 newbies have lots of questions.
I can answer a couple for you since I live here. expect hot and humid weather that time of year.
here is a link to other hotels (you'll need a car tho)
St. Charles is over 40 miles from Chicago. There's no subway to St. Charles. You can't even take the train from St. Charles to Chicago.
I have stayed at Peasant Run every year for the past 8 years while attending the ICE Conference. ICE stands for Illinois Computer Educators. As a matter of fact, I'll be heading up there next week for that Conference. There are many restaurants in the general area, fast food and sit down. There is a wonderful hot dog place right next door to Peasant Run. There is a shopping mall very nearby, and a Target Superstore.
No, there isn't a subway, but the METRA commuter rail station is just 10 minutes from the center of St. Charles.
You'll need to get a taxi to the resort, but that shouldn't be too bad.
I'd suggest calling the resort to find out the best way to navigate this type of travel plan.
To cut eating costs if there is a supermarket (Jodi mentions Target superstore) buy groceries to keep in your room. A loaf of bread & cheese, peanut butter or lunch meats can make a tasty sandwich for lunch - even bkfst along w/fresh fruit.
Be prepared to be *overwhelmed!* Never having attended a convention it will overwhelm anyone
I haven't attended in about 10 yrs so I can't address the demos or hands-on classes. D.Simmons is a great teacher.
Usually on Sunday night they have an open door event....anyone - if they taught or not can take up a table and start demo'ing. People gather around the table and ask ?s. Most of the instructors participate in this, some earlier than others, some not at all. Take a pen, paper & camera. Be sure to bring lots of rolls of film as it usually is very expensive if you have to buy more. Of course, now there are digital camera. Be sure you have a chip that holds 100s of pix. You'll want to take lots and lots of them.
Yes it's helpful to have a list of exactly what you want &/or what you already have as it is very easy to get carried away shopping. It's a mad house! So many people crowding....so may wonderful thing you have never seen and 'just can't live w/o'!
Many of the vendors - especially those from out of state or country will sell off their display items at great prices on the last day. Some will take notes and hold something for you if you are the 1st to ask for it. Be ready to ask....... it never hurts and the most they can do is say no
I agree with bringing or buying food. When I go to the ICE conference, I take breakfast bars and snacks. I always run to Target and pick up a 6 pack of soda and a few yogurts. I always stay at Peasant Run, and they provide bottled water and there are refrigerators and microwaves in the rooms. Staying in the Tower is my favorite. Some of the rooms are literally 1/4 mile away from the Conference Center in the hotel wings. There is a restaurant in the hotel, but it's pricey. There is also a kind of snack area that also has sandwiches, but again, it's cheaper to walk to Portillos. There's an ice cream shop in the hotel.
I've never been to an ICES conference, so I can't help there.