What to expect when attending a CGOA Chain Link Conference
CGOA Member - Kirsten Holloway
You can hardly believe your eyes! The entire hotel lobby is filled to over flowing with people of all ages wearing colorful crochet scarves, shawls, and hats. They are chatting happily and a few set aside their coffees and project bags and motion for you to come join them because they see you as one of their own since you too are sporting your latest crochet accessory…
Is this a dream? Of course not! It’s what typically happens at any CGOA (Crochet Guild of America) Chain Link conference! Hundreds of crochet enthusiasts just like you pack the convention center chosen for that year’s conference ready to enjoy exclusive classes, build friendships, fit in a few late-night crochet sessions, and maybe even run into their favorite pattern designer. You won’t leave the conference a stranger!
CGOA has been actively supporting crocheters since the early 90’s. It’s entirely volunteer-run by a group of individuals passionate about sharing their experience and love of crochet with the community. The CGOA Chain Link conference is so popular now that you won’t want to wait until the last minute to decide to attend! Class sizes are limited, and so are hotel rooms, so if you plan to stay in the hotel or convention center where the conference is being held making your reservations 4-5 months in advance isn’t a bad idea. Class offerings are usually posted online a few weeks before tickets go on sale so you have time to look them over and make your decision. Topics range from beginner-level basics all the way through advanced pattern design elements.
If you decide to skip the classes so you have extra time to hang out with other crocheters in a more relaxed environment, that’s fine too. Wear comfortable clothes, bring several crochet accessories you’re proud of, and you’ll fit right in. Since this group is so friendly, expect to receive a lot of compliments on your work, and maybe even a few questions!
Chances are, if you love to crochet you also love yarn (and can never get enough)! The Marketplace at the CGOA Chain Link Conference will put you in touch with dozens of indie yarn sellers, and all the hooks and notions you could ever need to support your crochet addiction. This was a highlight of my experience, and I only wish I had brought more spending money!
The conference wraps up with a big fashion show presenting original designs from crocheters around the country. This is a good time to cheer on the models in the show, hang out with those new friends of yours, and grab a few last-minute pictures of the fun before everyone heads home.
I hope this small taste has whet your appetite for the 2020 CGOA Chain Link conference July 22-25, in New Orleans, LA! If you want to read about my personal experience at a CGOA Chain Link conference, I share some more details over here: https://kirstenhollowaydesigns.com/2018/07/cgoa-chain-link-crochet-conference-review-and-guide.html