So, I know that MommyCon pretty much sells itself. It was started by a mom, it features family-friendly spaces, and it gets us out of the house—but if you haven’t been to a MommyCon yet, then you need to know the true benefits this convention offers! (Plus stay tuned for an upcoming blog post that features a GIVEAWAY of Chicago tickets!)
- VIP upgrades! Once you get your General Admission ticket, you can sign up for a special, intimate session with a presenter, which includes are really awesome gift bag. Whteher you are interested in breastfeeding, babywearing, or just a little fun, there is a VIP session for you! VIP sessions are usually released a month before the event and they sell out fast, so be sure to watch your local MC Facebook page to get one quick! (Atlanta and Chicago are sold out at this time, but check the local MC page to place an ISO post if you still want one!)
- Giveaways and gift bags. Okay, so this isn’t really what MC is all about, but I found a few of my new favorite products in the gift bag, so I am grateful I got to sample some stuff for free. I also love that anyone with a pass gets entered into the giveaways at the end of the day—it’s a great way to see the latest and greatest in baby products, and maybe take one home.
- On-site hotel blocks. If you can snag a room near the convention, do it. The rates are great, and you can’t beat having a place to crash after such a busy day! It’s really worth it to stick around so you can enjoy everything MC has to offer!
- Sleep consultations. Okay, I realize that sleep is a bit of a white whale for any parent with a child under the age of 5, but any help is good, right? You typically have to sign up for sessions with the sleep consultant in advance, but this is a great way to get some practical, tailored advice to tweak your routine for at least a few minutes of extra shut-eye.
- Feeding lounge. I’m all about nursing in public, but with a squirmy toddler, I know I am going to need a more distraction-free area to nurse. Thankfully, MC offers a very comfortable nursing area with nursing pillows, milk storage samples, and everything you need to stay comfortable while feeding your babe. These zones are also only for mamas and babies, so those of you who feel shy about NIP will have a safe space free from unwanted looks!
- Resource areas. I cloth diaper and babywear, and the top comments I get from other people are along the lines of “that looks confusing and labor-intensive.” 10 minutes in one of the resource areas at MommyCon, and these people would be singing a different tune. You can touch and feel all the different cloth diapers and baby carriers at MommyCon, and there are helpful volunteers there who will explain the ins and outs to you. It’s a great way to connect with resources that help you have the most success possible. I learned how to wear my toddlers in a wrap at the last MommyCon, and I am excited to see how the Cloth Diaper Resource Area and Babywearing Lounge can help me learn even more this year at MommyCon Chicago!
- Kid-friendly areas. Here’s the deal—a lot of parents don’t go to conventions because it’s impossible to bring the kids. You either have to pay for childcare (eek $$$$$!) or pray that your kidlets don’t make a peep during the presentations. MommyCon has so many kid-friendly spaces, from the play areas in the back of each presentation room, to the Little Dippers Creative Station. Your kids will have plenty to experience and do while you are there, and the Chicago event even has a little day camp for potty-trained littles!
- Exhibitors. I LOVE to see the new products that are out there and I love to connect with small businesses that support parenting in all its forms. Plus, it’s nice to pick up a few extra cloth menstrual pads or a new sippy cup while I am there. The vendors are all so easy to talk to, and they are willing to let you try out and explore their products at the booth before you buy!!!
- Great Speakers. The lineup of speakers at MommyCon gets better and better every year. What started as a small effort by some well-known bloggers has now branched out to include famous speakers on a wide variety of topics. This year, I am excited to see MommyCon address postpartum and early reading topics as they respond to feedback to incorporate more of what attendees want and need at a convention designed especially for parents.
- Connecting with a community of other parents. Lets face it—parenting is hard. It’s nice to share moments with other parents, talk about diapers, trade wrapping tips, and more without weird looks and judgment. You will meet new friends and connect with people who are as into parenting as you are!
I am writing this post as a member of the MommyCon Blogger Collective, which means I have a coupon code to help you save on admission!
Just enter CRADLEDINJOY16 at checkout, and you will get a $5 discount on tickets for any MommyCon general admission ticket that is not currently in presale or otherwise discounted! Ready to find the right MommyCon for you? See what each one has to offer and buy tickets today! early bird pricing doesn’t last forever. Plus, your general admission ticket makes you eligible to purchase VIP sessions, which I hear are AWESOME!
I’ll also be regularly updating on upcoming events, and especially when the Chicago schedule is released, since I’ll be there!
Here are the dates for this year:
Atlanta – February 6
Chicago – March 5
Seattle – April 2
Austin – June 25
DC – July 23
Costa Mesa – August 20
Orlando – September 3
San Jose – October 29