New Orleans | Modules Unraveled

139 DrupalCon New Orleans Details with Eric Schmidt, Sabrina Schmidt, Jason Want and Jeff Diecks - Modules Unraveled Podcast

Photo of Eric, Sabrina, Jason and Jeff

DrupalCon New Orleans

  • Where is the DrupalCon going to be?
    • New Orleans convention center
  • When is it?
    • May 9-13 2016
  • Why New Orleans?
    • We are seeing an incredible rebirth of a Great American City. Hurricane Katrina was such an unbelievable disaster, 80% of the city was flooded. Surrounding Parishes even worse, (we have Parishes instead of Counties), St. Bernard Parish, just down river, 99% was flooded. In the last 10 years we have overcome seemingly unsurmountable rebuilding, and have plenty more in the works. DrupalCon coming to New Orleans is great affirmation of progress we have made. It has a vibe like no other city, you can feel the life.
  • Why were you so driven to bring DrupalCon to your town?
    • It’s such a great place to be! Growing up 5 miles from Bourbon Street, we tend to take our City for granted. We do things that are rarely seen in the world! Food, Festivals, Family activities, Music, and of course you can drink in public! The general attitude across the whole city is very inviting and laid back. Really, a perfect place for a crowd like the Drupal Community!
  • What does the tech community look like there?
    *Growing in leaps and bounds. The entrepreneur landscape is one of the top in the country – we lead the nation in startups per capita by 64%, and we have a growing network of capital, which is important for startups. Game Loft, GE Capital, High Voltage Software have all chosen New Orleans because of our deep incentives, unique culture, and low cost of living. And our tech community is coalescing with the formation of TechNO, a coalition of local tech companies who meet regularly to promote the presence of the industry, New Orleans Entrepreneur Week hosted by the Idea Village, and NOLA Tech Week, which attracts national speakers and provides a great opportunity to showcase the industry. Finally, many local community colleges and universities are developing curricula to meet new digital workforce demands. There is no better opportunity in the country for tech companies than New Orleans. (from GNO, Inc. can be summarized)
  • What does the Drupal community look like?
    • We just had our Second camp! :-) Small but dedicated! We have had Meetups Monthly since 2010.
  • How important is the local community with the regards to putting on a DrupalCon.
    • I think now that the Drupal Association has taken the reigns of the Cons, the local community plays a part, but not like say, 2010, when we were in San Francisco. The local community had to shoulder the brunt of the work. And frankly, it was a lot, plus we probably had a limited number of cities with that size local community. That’s one of the great things about the Association, organizing DrupalCons!
  • What’s the Drupal adoption look like in New Orleans?
    • Growing, like everything else down here! The larger Universities have adopted Drupal, Tulane, Loyola, LSU up in Baton Rouge, plus the WWII museum, WWOZ (a great radio station, you should listen online), Cafe Du Monde, The Chef John Besh Restaurant Group, Audubon Nature Institute, Dr. Tichenor’s, maybe more….(or we keep it short??)
  • Who’s going to be the “boots on the ground” in New Orleans playing “host”?
    • Hopefully, us! We are both born and raised in the New Orleans area. I am involved in the local civic and business community and the entire Tech community are excited to host Drupalers!
  • How is it organized compared to years past? (Level of community and association involvement)
    • Again the Drupal Association has done a great job of spearheading the Cons. We worked closely with them to develop the logo and overall branding of the Con. In the coming months, we will work with them to look at venues and locations for events. Sponsors have reached out to us to help them organization of their specific needs for parties and meeting.
  • How will you be choosing who is selecting sessions

    • Each Con we put together the Track Team which is comprised of global track chairs (people who have evaluated and selected sessions for a Con at least once before) and then we work to assemble the Local Track Chairs who work in conjunction with the globals. We get these people from recommendations from within the community, people reaching out to volunteer and people expressing interest to Global Track Chairs. They go through an interview process with the Drupal Association and then the team is assembled and starts working to get out the call for content. It’s quite a ways away planning-wise but the Drupal Association will start putting together the New Orleans Track Team in the late fall, so if you’re interested or know someone who would be a great addition please reach out to
      You can read all about the session selection process here:
  • For those that want to have a future Con in their community, do you have any advice?

    • We heard interest from the Drupal Association in having a New Orleans Con about five years ago, but we didn’t have a local community to support it. We started up a small meetup in Baton Rouge in 2010, then it slowly migrated to New Orleans. We didn’t lobby anyone to win the conference for the city. We just tried to establish a community and show consistent interest over the years, and trusted that New Orleans is a destination that the community would want to visit. Eric: you were at that first meetup and have helped to coordinate the growth of the group, what are your thoughts?
    • Have a consistent Meetup! We decided at our first Meetup we would meet on the First Thursday of the Month, even if it was only two people. And barring that occasional conflict with a carnival parade we have done that. Then organize a Camp, start small and be consistent!
  • Before we started recording, you mentioned that you wanted to talk about possible afterparty locations. Do you want to do that now?
    • Everywhere!
    • Crawfish season

Questions from Twitter

  • Ryan Gibson
    What kind of festivities can we expect during DrupalCon NO? #MUP139
  • Carie Fisher
    #MUP139 best place for drupalcon parties? any places we should try and visit in NO?
  • Robyn Green
    Question for Jeff, What amount of LSU attire will I be required to have for Drupalcon, and where can I get a 'I <3 Hallman" hat? #MUP139
  • Ryan Gibson
    What is the must-have NO food that I should plan on bringing Tums to be able to enjoy? #MUP139
  • markie
    Thanks @jasonawant for letting me crash at your place during JazzFest. #MUP139
  • Ryan Gibson
    And for letting us take a spin on the boat.