VMworld is a great time to soak in everything you can possibly learn about virtualization from all the many sessions, booths and experts attending the show. It can literally be information overload and at the end of a long day you probably feel a bit mentally exhausted from it all. So what better way to unwind then hit the many parties that are thrown each night during the event. I thought I would highlight a few from the full list which you can view here. I always believe the parties are a great way to network after the event in a more relaxed setting and I am always thankful to the vendors that pay a lot of money to put these parties on without getting much in return from them.
- 5:00-7:30pm – The official Welcome Reception – Don’t miss this one as it’s probably the best time to hit the Solutions Exchange, the vendors are all locked and loaded, fully staffed and ready to engage you. Of course having lots of free food and booze all around makes it even more attractive.
- 7:00-10:00pm – The legendary VMunderground party – This year instead of being at the Nine Fine Irishman bar in the New York, New York casino it’s now at Beerhaus which is pretty much attached to New York, New York. I always enjoy this one as I can see many of my old friends all gathered in one place. Admission is $40 and you have to buy tickets in advance but hey it’s cheaper than a night on the town in Vegas and you get to meet a lot of vGeeks.
- 7:30-9:30pm – VMUG Member Party – I missed last year’s VMUG party but I here it was great, damn you VMUG party for scheduling it the same time as VMunderground this year. Either attend this one or the other one or both, either way you can’t go wrong and are guaranteed to have a good time. It looks like they may have filled up but you can get on a wait list or just show up late and you might be able to get in.
- 6:00-10:00pm – Cohesity at TopGolf – They’re back at again this year. I’ve never been much of a golfer, I used to play around a bit many years ago but I went to TopGolf for the first time last year and had a great time. If you’re not familiar with TopGolf it’s not what you think and you don’t have to be skilled to participate, think of it more like bowling with a golf club. An added bonus this year, if Rawlinson Rivera is there it’s sure to be a wild time.
- 7:00-10:00pm – Journey to the Cloud Party – Zerto is joining with Nutanix to throw a great Cloud themed party featuring an awesome Journey tribute band. I heard last year their party was epic, so this one is at the top of my list to attend as I love Journey.
- 4:30-6:00pm – Hall Crawl – Come on back to the Solutions Exchange for round 2, during the Hall Crawl certain vendors will have beer and drinks at their booth.
- 7:00-10:00pm – vExpert Party at the Pinball Museum – Invite only party for vExperts, from mobsters last year to pinball this year, always a fun time as Pat Gelsinger is usually in attendance along with other VMware top brass and experts.
- 6:30-8:30pm – HPE Rock Star Karaoke – This was fun last year, karaoke with a live rock band instead of one of those crappy machines at the House of Blues. Invitation only so stop by the HPE booth and see if you can get an invite or find me and I can probably get you in.
- 8:00-12:00pm – Veeam’s annual VMworld party – Consistently one of the best parties at VMworld, Veeam is a company that constantly gives back to the community and they go all out on their VMworld party, this is one you don’t want to miss. This year instead of being onsite at Mandalay it’s across the street at MGM at Hakkasan.
- 7:30-10:30pm – The official VMworld party – Last year was at the LV Speedway, this year’s party is much closer at the T-Mobile arena which is right behind New York New York. Musical entertainment is Blink-182 this year, there hasn’t been a VMworld party band I’ve like in years but hey, free beer, free food and good times.