Is this your first time attending a Brownfields event? Welcome! Many of your counterparts from across the country are also attending their first. Our goal is to help you make the most of this opportunity, so here are eight tips that you can use.
You can also join the conversation with our hashtag #Brownfields2019. Take pictures inside and outside the conference hall and share your excitement!
Network In-Person — Meet your peers and other stakeholders. Take advantage of receptions, roundtable sessions, and the exhibit hall. Along with general sessions, we’ll also have regional Open House events where you can meet your EPA Regional Brownfields Coordinators and other stakeholders from your region and share your ideas. Which brings us to our second tip:
Share Information — Bring a one-page briefing sheet or brochure on your local brownfields priorities to share with other interested potential partners. Events this with scopes and scales this large can be overwhelming (in a good way) and this way you’ll be prepared with facts and figures ready to jog your memory during your impromptu brainstorming sessions.
Attend Educational Sessions — This one is obvious, but Brownfields 2019 will have over 150 (close to 200!) sessions on a variety of topics. These are chances for you to learn how other communities are addressing brownfields, both in presentations and in off-site, hands-on Mobile Workshops.
(Not only that, but we’ll have a whole session for first-time attendees (Wednesday, December 11, 10:45 am-11:45 am in Room 502 B) hosted by several experts who have attended every conference to date!)
Find a Mentor — Along with conference experts, it would follow that people who’ve been to every one of these events would also be experts in their field. This is a chance for you to connect with any number of community leaders who have had success redeveloping brownfields. Establish a connection for future consultations and advice.
Visit the Exhibit Hall — You can’t do everything by yourself, and we know that. That’s why you’re here! To help you, we’ll have dozens of vendors and service providers for you to connect with and learn what tools are available to you.
ACRES Training — All EPA Brownfields Grant recipients are required to complete property profile forms and report their grant progress to EPA through the ACRES database. Take advantage of the available beginner and advanced training sessions, as well as walk-up help desk time slots while you’re at the conference. Consult the Pocket Guide or the app for times.
Be Inspired — Finally, attend the daily plenary and keynote presentations. Feel the excitement of others’ inspiration and success and take back as much as you can to your community!