While some employers prohibit family members from joining employees who attend work-related training, many others don’t. As many of our members’ spouses have found over the years, joining their partners for the week of the conference offers a nice getaway.
Visiting roads less traveled
Marcy Loving, wife of Central Valley chapter president Kipp Loving, says she has seen parts of the country that she wouldn’t otherwise ordinarily visit. “The experiences have almost always been positive,” she says. Memorable places included Atlantic City (New Jersey) in 2008 — and perhaps surprisingly, Cleveland (Ohio) in 2006.
“Many people prior to the conference wondered what was in Cleveland,” says Loving. “However, to me, and others too, this turned out to be an outstanding place to visit. The City of Cleveland, and specifically the Cleveland Police Department, were the ultimate hosts. The hotel, The Renaissance, was beautiful. Visiting the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame was interesting and great fun. Basically, we came away from that conference feeling it was one of the best ever!”
Gail Wilczynski, wife of International 1st Vice President and 2011 Conference Chair Ron Wilczynski, had a similar experience at the 2010 conference in Atlanta. “[There was] a pamphlet that spelled out 50 great things to do in Atlanta with descriptions, addresses, times, contact info, prices and a map,” she explains. “My sister and I went through the list and picked out the 10-15 things we were most interested in doing, then hopped on the metro (one day had a rental car) and went touring.”
Contributing to the conference experience
Sometimes, spouses even choose to stay behind and help with the volunteer duties. That’s what Shirley Monkhouse did in 2010 in Atlanta. “While accompanying my husband, Duncan Monkhouse [Conference Chair that year, currently HTCIA International President], I stepped in to help with registration and other ‘need to do’ tasks,” she says.
This allowed her not just to meet many different people from around the world, but also to meet and learn more about HTCIA members as individual professionals. “Many of the conference attendees, speakers and vendors work in the public view; however, others work diligently and persistently in a quiet way,” she says.
“Yet, all have a single purpose — to stop crimes from occurring and perpetuating using today’s multiple and virtually endless array of modern high technology applications. It was a privilege to give a little of my time to make their experience at the conference more effortless and enjoyable.”
A sense of community
Being able to visit new places isn’t the only benefit Loving has found from attending the conference. “Over the years, I have come to know many of the attendees,” she says. “A few attendees often bring their wives and I have gotten to know them too, [together with] people I would otherwise never meet…. It has come to be something I look forward to each year and, now, I look forward to again seeing people I have met over the years.”
About Indian Wells
Don’t want to leave family members at home, but worried that the resort experience isn’t for them? Consider bringing them anyway. According to the Renaissance Esmeralda’s website, Indian Wells is situated near canyons with hiking and biking trails, or if shopping is preferable, El Paseo, the “Rodeo Drive of Palm Springs.”
Other attractions abound, including The Living Desert Zoo & Gardens, the Children’s Discovery Museum, Palm Springs Desert Museum, and the Joshua Tree National Park. Please consider bringing the family with you to the conference, and be sure to register yourself here: https://www.htciaconference.org/registration.html
Image: MichaelBMXKing via Flickr