On October 15th, the 5th annual BlogCon conference will be taking place at Penn State Worthington Scranton. The event, organized by bloggers and social media enthusiasts Mandy Pennington, Karla Porter and Michelle Davies, is a day-long, non-profit event that focuses on teaching people how to successfully create and manage blogs while raising money for a great cause.
“It’s basically a conference for digital ninjas.” Karla Porter stated.
The trio first met officially at BlogFest, a political blogging conference that mainly focused on politics and writing. That’s when they were inspired to start something of their own in our area.
“And we thought, why is there not something that isn’t bloggers getting together and learning things that have nothing to do with politics?” Michelle Davies said.
From there, they tweeted, emailed, and connected over social media to make it happen. In no time at all, they developed a logo, name, and set a date for the first conference. In 2012, the first BlogCon commenced. What makes BlogCon special is the fact that the team decided to make the event a non-profit and donate the proceeds a particular area of need.
That particular area of need became the Squirrel Girls Tech Camp. The camp, funded completely on the proceeds from BlogCon, targets girls in grades 4-6 and aims to develop skills in technology, programming, leadership, and confidence. The girls varied in interested from wanting to serve in the army to wanting to become a veterinarian, and the organizers couldn’t be more proud of the turnout and positive reactions they had.
“It’s incredible knowing that we are doing something good for our community.” Mandy Pennington said.
So what should we expect from the actual conference this year?
“At BlogCon, there’s something for everyone,” Davies said. “From politics to Pinterest to marketing to social media, we have whatever you’re looking to accomplish.”
This year in particular the conference is hosting a wide variety of speakers, from a Google representative to an animal rights activist. There will also be an expo-hall with a series of tables for attendees to network, meet new people, and discover new companies. Also new to the conference this year is an after-party, with a location that is being announced on the day of BlogCon.
For Mandy, Michelle, and Karla, the best part is getting to see the whole thing happen. Once all of the preparation is complete, they have the chance to sit back and watch what they have created.
“There is nothing quite like this in our region, and we certainly feel like we are giving back to the community in several ways, through both the conference and the tech camp. The people are by far the best part, and it’s so nice to finally meet them face-to-face.” Pennington tells us.
The other huge draw to the conference is the price. At only $15 per ticket, you get a pass for the whole day with lunch included.
Pennington also adds, “Passes for most conferences like this start at $2,000. At BlogCon, you are paying a small percentage of that while still getting the same great conference.”
For more information on BlogCon, how to get tickets, and to find out more about their presenters, visit www.nepablogcon.com.
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