Montana Library Association, April 17-20 in Missoula, MT! #MLA2013

[This post originally appeared on the Beekeeping Librarian blog]

The Montana Library Association 2013 conference will be held next week, April 17-10, in Missoula, Montana. Time to prepare. 

What I am most looking forward to:

  • Missoula Public Library Welcome Reception – Wednesday 5:30-7pm
  • Montana Book Award Reception @ the Missoula Winery – Thursday 5:30-7pm
  • Sheila Cates Event!!!!!! This year: Family Feud, Let’s Make a Deal, lose all of your money to a good cause, have a few drinks & have a ton of fun. Thursday 8-10pm
  • Teaching! Amy Marchwick & I will be presenting two sessions together: MSC Reports & MSC Facebook/BookMyne/Enterprise. I love teaching and seeing shared catalog librarians from across the state.

What to take to MLA:

  • Business cards and official-looking name tag, if you have them.
  • Your iPad or other device – use it to take notes, add contacts of people you meet, check and save resources as you see them in class.
  • Highlighters to mark what you plan to see in the conference booklet.
  • Crazy outfit for the Cate Event: this year they want you to dress as a crazy old relative (it’s a family feud theme :P)
  • Address labels for the Sheila Cates raffle.
  • Empty boxes if you want a lot of freebies like bookmarks, magnets, and brochures to distribute to your patrons. These get too heavy for bags.
  • Tote bag or comfortable bookbag for conference materials.
  • Layers: you never know what spring weather will do in Montana, and you further don’t know what the temperature control at the conference center is like.
  • Camera!
  • Swimsuit – there’s a pool in the hotel :)

What’s close to the conference hotel?

Not much. If you don’t want to drive your options are pretty much limited to IHOP, Hooters, and Dairy Queen.

Where to eat dinner in Missoula:

There are chain restaurants all the way down N. Reserve, where the conference hotel is located. The sit-down restaurants include: Johnny Carino’s, Buffalo Wild Wings, Outback Steakhouse, and Perkins. But for better local choices, head downtown:

  • Sushi Hana @ 403 N. Higgins – Great vegetarian sushi and the best vegetable tempura I’ve had in a long time.
  • The Depot @ 201 Railroad St. West – has a fancy side and then a more casual side, where they serve fantastic pizzas and appetizers.
  • Iron Horse Brew Pub @ 501 N. Higgins – Lots of dinners and sandwich options, including great vegetarian far. I had a stellar barbeque tempeh sandwich last time I went. Also, lots of good microbrews available.
  • For consistent Montana-based chains, try: Taco del Sol @ 422 N. Higgins or the MacKenzie River Pizza Company @ 137 W. Front Street

Most of us will be eating breakfast and lunch at the conference, so dinner is where you should spend your decision-making energy!

See you all next week :)

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