This week New Jersey Association of Health, Recreation, Physical Education and Dance had their 100th convention! Holy shnikes was it amazing. I am going to go straight into my glows and grows cause there is so much to discuss!
GLOW: Meeting Kim and her son Joey Catalfamo.
Kim is an Adapted PE teacher and Joey is a pleasure. They have been coming to the convention for years. While I have interacted with Kim before we did not hang out and really talk. That changed this year. Our conversations went well beyond surface level and Joey is a wealth of knowledge. It was truly a pleasure hanging out with both of them.
Glow: Jody Duff (@JodysAPE). Yep, All of Jody is amazing. It started out with me attending her session. What she does in an adapted environment is nothing short of remarkable. She uses leaf blowers and some sort of magic electric switches to create an environment where her students can succeed. We progressed past mere professionals when she willingly opened up about her personal life when we hung out after the social. Her contributions in my session helped everyone refocus on why identity is so darn important. If you get a chance to hang out with her. You will be a better person for it.
Groan: The hotel did not accept credit cards for lunch. We were given a voucher for lunch but that alone wasn’t enough to purchase something decent. I don’t carry cash and it would have been cooler if we could have used the voucher and debit card to purchase food.
Glow: The games social. All credit goes to Nick Kline (PeTop5) and US Games for sponsoring it. EVERY conference should do this. So the first part is we had the band Front Lawn Barbeque. They were amazing! On top of that vendors allowed us to use their games. To summarize there was food, drinks, games, dancing, and great people. This is a relatively easy way to get people who love to play games, eat, drink, and listen to music to come to the events that are planned.
Glow: Stephanie Morris SHAPE America CEO. Stephanie is leading us through one of the most turbulent time in our organization’s history. I was lucky enough to connect with her in various sessions and at the social. We have numerous conversations and I believe that she is the right person to lead us through these turbulent times. We will come out stronger on the other side as long as we continue to support our national organization.
Grow: The technology at the conference needs to be stepped up. There were multiple issues with projectors and not all the rooms were hooked up with speakers. Someone needs to talk to the technology director of NJ AHPERD and get them to step up their game!
Glows: The speakers at the conference. Between Dr. Repollet, Judy Lobianco, Cory Booker, and Stephanie Morris this conference was supported to the max!
Glow: The free breakfast was fantastic!!!
Personal Glow: My presentation on identity and social persepective went well. If you would like to access it here is the link: Tinyurl.com/njahperd
Conclusion: This conference was the best one I have attended yet. The quality of presenters, the social, the breakfast, the vendors, and the participants were fantastic. NJ AHPERD is a shining example of what conferences can be if members attend, people volunteer, and the national organization is supportive. What an amazing time!