What’s to Be Excited About in Austin?

By Michael Pearsall, P.Eng., CVS, CVM, FICE, FEC – Vice President – Conferences, SAVE International

There are no limits to value in Austin and there should be no limits to how much you can get out of the 2018 Value Summit.

As you are reading this, we should all be busy packing our bags to head to Austin, TX. Are you getting excited? I certainly am! Over the last few weeks, we have been getting down to the final details of the big event and everything is coming together nicely.

I am happy to report that we are now very close to our target registration numbers for the 2018 Value Summit and quite possibly will be over by the time we get to the President’s Reception. Speaking of the President’s Reception, that is the first exciting thing I want to tell you about in Austin. Picture a warm summer night at a Texas garden party. Even better, picture there is a classic ‘50s Airstream trailer serving food. This is certain to be a memorable setting!

Monday kicks off with our opening remarks and a special keynote from Dr. Stephen Mulva who directs the Construction Industry Institute (CII), a research and development component of the University of Texas at Austin. Later we have a number of quality papers being presented, then after the second break we bring back the tri-factor of action with the International Forum, the U.S. Government Forum and a special version of the Miles Value Foundation Forum looking at the allocation of resources. Similar to last year, we will have some reception time for our guests at the end of the forums.

Monday night we have allocated free time for dinner on your own in the Austin area with friends and colleagues. There is so much to do and see in Austin – and this is the place known for its music and night life, so take full advantage of this opportunity.

On Tuesday you can delve into zapping the generation gap with our special guest Meagan Johnson, something everyone should find entertaining and amusing as well as informative. Then, America’s favorite new game show has come to SAVE International with “the Wheel of Function”. Four contestants will battle against each other to win BIG prizes. You don’t want to miss this exciting, fun and entertaining event!

Later on Tuesday we continue with our range of quality paper presentations. New this year, parallel to our always popular manufacturing track, is a session dedicated to Agile and the Value Methodology. Tuesday afternoon I am very excited to announce we will have a special screening with the SAVE Rocky Mountain Chapter presenting their new video featuring Charles W. Bytheway. I have been anxious to see this video since I first heard about it!

Tuesday night, of course, we have our gala closing banquet and awards presentation. I have really enjoyed the last couple of years of this and, as always, the highlight of watching new Fellows being inducted.

What else should you do in Austin?

  1. I’m told that the Barton Spring Pool in Zilker Park is something to experience, particularly if you have brought the family. This 3-acre swimming pool is naturally fed from refreshing underground springs. If you love swimming and have access to a car, I am also told that Hamilton Pool Preserve, a historic swimming hole and natural grotto, should be on your bucket list.
  2. Sixth Street is only one mile from our hotel and is a can’t miss place for the barhopping crowd.
  3. The Contemporary Arts Museum and the Austin Children’s Museum are also close to our hotel. The Umlauf Sculpture Garden & Museum is also highly recommended. The highlight, though, could be the Bullock Texas State History Museum.
  4. For the more obscure, there is seeing a movie at the Alamo Drafthouse. This is the best movie theater in the world according to Quentin Tarantino.
  5. Of course, no trip to Austin would be complete without delving into the local music scene. There are too many options to list here – I can’t wait to hear what you find.

I am very pleased to see the nice range of sponsors who have stepped up to support the event. Sponsorship is very important; without sponsorship, we cannot have a quality event at a reasonable cost. This is your Society and it needs your support! There is still a little room for last-minute sponsors, if you would like to get included see https://www.valuesummit2018.org/sponsorship.

Your small but dedicated 2018 Value Summit program committee has worked hard at planning a great event, and I hope you agree. Please plan on being in Austin, TX June 9-12, 2018 for the 2018 Value Summit.