In 2012, as my tenure on the PASSMN Board of Directors began, it quickly became apparent to me that “our little club” was quite fortunate. It was rare for us to have difficulty finding speakers or sponsors and when it came to SQL Saturday, the generosity of our sponsors allowed us to do great things. Tack on the fact that we would routinely pull in 40-60 attendees per meeting, and we were living the good life.

Towards the end of the year, as I prepared to take over as Chapter Leader, I had a conversation with our outgoing Chapter Leader, Steve Hughes ( bt ) about a truly awesome idea he had come up with. In a nutshell “what if we were to setup satellite user group meetings in various locations throughout the state?”

What a great idea! Starting and nurturing a new user group can be an overwhelming task, but we could use the resources of PASSMN to help make this happen in other areas of the state. Minnesota is a big place, but strangely we only have two PASS Chapters, both of which are in the Minneapolis/Saint Paul area.

The moment Steve mentioned this, I knew it was something I wanted to be a part of and I have focused a great deal of energy on it over the last year. We knew we had interest from people outside of the Twin Cities area and soon focused our efforts on Rochester, home of the Mayo Clinic and a large IBM facility. Rochester was also the location from which we would receive the most “feedback” when we were unable to stream a PASSMN meeting.

Getting all of the logistics in place took a little longer than we thought but I am thrilled to announce that PASSMN will hold the first ever PASSMN – Rochester meeting on January 22nd at 4PM, at the Mayo Clinic. Come for the networking, stay for the presentation!

A huge thanks goes out to Steve as well as a great group of DBAs at the Mayo Clinic and our Microsoft partners who all helped make this reality.

PASSMN will be using some of its cash reserves to sponsor the meeting and will be handling all logistics, as if it were just another monthly meeting.  Provided we have the interest, the goal is to host these meetings quarterly, while working with local SQL Server professionals to spin it off as its own official PASS Chapter.  Based on our early registration numbers, I am quite confident the interest is there.

So we’re taking PASSMN on the road!  If you know anyone in SE Minnesota or Western Wisconsin that may be interested in attending, please have them RSVP!

We can’t wait to introduce a group of SQL Server professionals to the PASS community!