Sunday, October 29, 2017

SQL Train Experience

Sorry for being late with this post.
Just have to recap from the PASS Summit 2017.

Here I'll briefly talk about SQL Train Experience.

The organizer of the event Chris Hyde has already published a blog about it I'm just want to post my pictures and briefly describe everything I think worth to mention.

At first: Frequently Asked Questions.

Q: What is a SQL Train?
A: SQL Train is a small event organized by Portland SQL enthusiasts and it happens in an actual train moving from Portland, OR to Seattle, WA. The whole cart is just full of SQL pros, donuts and refreshments.

Q: When that event takes place?
A: The event is usually scheduled exactly between SQL Saturday Oregon ( and PASS Summit ( in Seattle, WA.

Q: Is it always scheduled like this?
A: No, but it will continue until PASS Summit will take place in Seattle, WA.

Q: Can you tell more about timing?
A: Train departures from Portland, OR at about 12 P.M. and arrives to Seattle, WA approximately 4 P.M.

Q: Where and when do we gather for the event?
A: Union Station 800 Northwest 6th Avenue Portland, OR 97209. One hour before train departure (about 11 A.M.) It is also possible to board the train at Vancouver, WA train station, but you will miss the boarding experience.

Q: Who is participating in that event?
A: Anybody who purchased a ticket for that event. The most of the participants are attendees of SQL Saturday in Portland, OR and they are moving towards PASS Summit conference. A lot of participants are SQL Saturday speakers, PASS Summit speakers, SQL Saturday and PASS Summit volunteers and just regular SQL professionals joining wonderful #SQLFamily.

Q: How many people are participating in the event?
A: This time we had a full cart with 36 people. It is possible that next year we can have two carts. It is up to you if we can fill two carts.

Q: What kind of experience I can expect in SQL Train?
A: You will be surrounded by SQL gurus and you can ask any question regarding SQL and get it answered by a gang of high level pros. You can hear stories from around the world, about other SQL events and what caveats they have. You can make new friends to hook up with them for the entire week of following PASS Summit. Donuts and refreshments are part of the ticket price. You won't be hungry or thirsty. You can use train's Wi-Fi to do some work or to tweet about the event.

Q: What kind of food drinks are served on board?
A: For food there are only donuts and power bars along with beer and white/red wine. If you have special preferences then better bring your own. Organizers will not be able to fit all 70 people's requirements.

Q: Will I see any scenic views from the train?
A: It depends. In our case it was foggy and we see almost nothing, but that is not what you board SQL train for.

Q: When will be the next SQL Train?
A: Next event will take a place at  November 4th of 2018. Please plan ahead.

Q: Where can I purchase SQL Train ticket?
A: At first, monitor Twitter hash tag #SQLTrain. Second, contact Chris Hyde and let him know you are interested to include you into a mail list.

Q: When should I purchase the tickets?
A: As soon as sale starts. The number of seats is very limited.

Q: How much ticket costs?
A: This year it was $40, but next year it might slidely change in any direction.

Q: Can I bring my spouse/partner/girlfriend/boyfriend on board with me?
A: Absolutely. Just do not forget to purchase a ticket in time.

Q: I have a big luggage. Will it fit into train?
A: The best way to manage a luggage is to give it to train attendant in Portland and get it back in Seattle. Like you do it in airport. Airports just faster.

Q: May our company sponsor the event?
A: Please ask organizers, but why not? That is wonderful business opportunity. If you will provide better travel experience for two carts of SQL professionals from around the World you can gain their attention for the whole four hours.

Sorry of that QA is too messy and if I did not cover something please ask me or directly the organizer of the event Chris Hyde.

And now some photos:

At first we gathered at the train station:

Train station is very old you can see a lot of empty telephone boots, but sign is still functioning.

Just got to the train.

Already excited.

Too much to eat and drink.

First tweets from the #SQLTrain !

Polishing presentation, but tweets are more important

People prefer not to sit, but stay, walk and chat.