10 Years Young

It was early in 2009 – I don’t remember the date exactly. A group of us had gotten together after the previous year’s PASS Summit and started I-380 PASS, the first PASS chapter in Iowa. At one of our regular lunches, Michelle, the leader of the group, proposed an idea to help get people fired up about the new group. An event called SQL Saturday had started in Florida – it was a one-day conference, held on a Saturday, in which people would learn about SQL Server. Unlike most other tech conferences at the time, it was free and completely community-driven. As I recall, a lot of us had reservations about the idea. I mean, we had just started a user group; could we really pull off something as large as a conference? Michelle was persistent, though, and a few months later, in October of 2009, we hosted SQL Saturday #19 – the first SQL Saturday in the Midwest and one of only a few west of the Mississippi. We not only pulled it off, but it was a rousing success, and we quickly started planning the next year’s event.

Fast forward to 2018, and SQLSaturday Iowa City is still going strong. Next week, we’re hosting our 10th annual event – one of only a few host cities to have reached that milestone to date. We’re proud of what has happened here, and we intend to celebrate!

Over twenty speakers will be on-site in Iowa City on June 23 to present twenty-five sessions on topics covering much of the Microsoft data platform, including performance tuning, security, cloud technologies, PowerShell, Power BI, and machine learning, just to name a few. And like that first event, all of the content at the conference on the 23rd is free, presented by experts from around the community. But even better than the content is the connections you make at a SQLSaturday. Many of us have seen the trajectories of our careers changed dramatically through the people we’ve met and talked to at these events.

If you want more in-depth instruction, we have that covered, also, through one of our more recent additions, pre-conference sessions. On June 21 and 22, we have three paid sessions available for you to choose from. Two engineers from Microsoft will be on hand to talk about how to get your databases up to Azure SQL Database; perennial favorite David Klee from Heraflux will be here to talk to you about what DBAs need to understand about infrastructure in the cloud; and Dave Bland will show you how to use the tools you already have in SQL Server to identify performance bottlenecks. There aren’t very many places in Iowa to get this kind of training on SQL Server!

Oh, and did we mention that there will be prizes? Our generous sponsors always provide fantastic prizes to give away at our end of day raffle, and we just might have a few special things to give away. (This is a celebration, after all!)

If you’re in the Midwest, we hope you’ll come see us next week to help us celebrate this milestone. We’re truly excited – it’s going to be a great time!

If you want to join us at this year’s SQLSaturday Iowa City, register at our event home page.


Ed Leighton-Dick helps small and midsize businesses solve their most challenging database performance, resiliency, and data security issues at Kingfisher Data, the consulting firm he founded in 2014. He has taught thousands of people at over 200 events, including the world's largest Microsoft data platform conferences, and he has been a leader in the Microsoft data community since 2008. Microsoft has recognized Ed seven times as a Data Platform MVP for his expertise and service to the data community.