A Few tips for Catalyst Dallas week

Catalyst Dallas is here! Starting today (Wednesday) through Friday. We're excited to be in Dallas for the 2nd year! A few tips for those of you attending Catalyst Dallas for the first time this year, or maybe it's your 2nd time. Hopefully these are helpful and allow your Catalyst Dallas experience to be the best ever!

1. Arrive early. Especially on Thursday morning. The pre-show starts up at 7 am, so we'll try our best to entertain you while you wait for the doors to open around 8 am.

2. Attend LABS. LAB sessions occur on Wednesday, May 9, and are a great way to dive deeper into practical topics. It is a different ticket and is NOT included in your Main sessions registration, but you can buy a ticket onsite. All of the LAB sessions will be great, and I recommend every session that we've created. But just want to give you a few names of some of the LAB speakers you may not know but we'll want to hear:

Jonathan Merritt; Esther Havens; Jen and Brandon Hatmaker; Herbert Cooper; leadership panel with Jenny White, Jennie Allen and Lauren Chandler; 

3. Bring food with you. Because parking is free, and there is plenty of it at Bent Tree, you'll be able to get to your vehicle no problem at lunch and dinner. So with that in mind, plan to tailgate! Bring the grill, or just an ice chest and some extra food. It's really a pain to drive somewhere for lunch or dinner, so just hang out and soak up the sun! We will also have Chick-fil-A for sale onsite outside, so that is also an option.

4. Attend the evening session on Thursday night. Do not miss Thursday night. Matt Chandler, plus Gungor. It will be a great time. You'll be tempted to go back to the hotel room and turn on the baseball game or Thursday night American Idol results, but stick around.

5. Bring a White Elephant gift! We are asking everyone to bring a White elephant gift (something really cheap) for Friday morning. It will require your "presence" for sure.

6. Meet other leaders. There is an incredible amount of wisdom and influence gathered in one place at one time, so take advantage of the other leaders who are present.

7. No reserved seating. Because there is no reserved seating, you'll want to arrive early. And if you are attending Catalyst with a big group, make sure you bring some 5 x 7 cards or paper (and tape) to be able to tape on the seat so that you'll remember where you are sitting!

8. Sing loud. 3,200 voices of leaders who are passionately worshipping God together is epic. Don't stand (or sit) idly by with arms crossed and lips closed. Join in.

9. Catalyst Backstage- if you can't attend, no worries. Join us on CatalystBackstage starting on Wednesday afternoon at 2:30 pm CST, and then on Thursday and Friday mornings at 8:30 am CST. We'll have interviews with speakers, behind the scenes footage, and several live look-ins on some of the sessions.

10. Purchase t-shirts and jackets early at the resource centers. If you plan on buying a t-shirt or jacket, purchase them at the first break. They sell out fast, so don't wait.

11. Bring items to give back and help others. In partnership with CitySquare, we want to serve those less fortunate in the community. We are asking EVERY Catalyst Dallas attendee to bring at least one or two items from the list below.

Donated items & gift cards will be collected in bins just outside the entrance. All Catalyst attendees are asked to bring the following items for donation (new and unopened):     
  •     Jump ropes & balls
  •     Bubbles & side walk chalk
  •     Baby Wipes
  •     Water activity toys--water guns, water balloons, etc.
  •     Mens' and womens' underwear (size: large)
Catalyst attendees are also encouraged to donate a new pair of kids shoes to be distributed at the Convey of Hope outreach in Dallas this Saturday, May 12. Donated shoes can be placed in the collection bins at the main entrance doors of the church. For more information visit dallas.convoyofhope.org

12. Dress casual- jeans or shorts are great, and t-shirts work as well. The key is- Dress comfortable. High's in the lower 80's the rest of the week in Dallas.

13. Bring an extra bag for all the Catalyst swag. There are lots of great partners at Catalyst all around the lobby and outside on the grass. Bring an extra bag to collect all the goodies.

14. Hang out in the Reflective Worship area- allow yourself some time to hang out in the reflective worship area in the Family theatre on Thursday and Friday. Some of us just need a fresh dose of God's provision and goodness, so take advantage of this area.

15. If u tweet, use the hashtag #CATALYST.

16. Purchase the Catalyst Experience Kit. Every year we try and put together the best of the best so you can take the Catalyst Dallas experience home with you. This year is no exception. You can purchase it before you get to the event and then pick it up onsite without having to mess with the lines. I highly recommend this! Includes all kinds of great stuff, including the talks from this event, plus the talks from this past October at Catalyst Atlanta.

17. Engage. Many of us tend to go to leadership gatherings and conferences and never really connect. We get distracted by things going on around us. This year we want you to truly Be Present. Laugh. Listen. Sing. Pray. Engage. Be Present.