Last year we had a couple mamas in the house. I took note. This year, I will be one of those mamas, happily toting my daughter around (she’ll be about two months old by then). In an effort to make utopYA as mama-friendly as possible, we have set aside a small room upstairs near the action for feeding, changing or resting your child or toddler.
It will be an absolutely quiet room…in fact it will be labeled The Quiet Room for Mamas. We will ask that all cell phones be turned off or to vibrate (good advice for all panel rooms, as well). Please whisper to your child and anyone else you happen to run into in there. It will be dimly lit and the windows facing the conference area will be covered. Max capacity is about eight people.
This will be an unstaffed room — meaning: do NOT leave your child unattended.
With regard to children at the conference in general: Children under 12 are admitted free with a paying parent/guardian, but please be aware — some of our panelists and attendees use “passionate language” when discussing hot topics and hot fictional boyfriends. While we ask every one to be on their best behavior, we will not censor them.
We will also ask you to remove your infant, toddler or teen if they become a distraction to the session conversation taking place in the panel rooms. Please sit in the back of the room near the doors in case you need to make a quick exit.
While we don’t expect a lot of moms bringing infants/toddlers this year, we do want to make utopYA a wonderful experience for all attendees. We’re hoping that these steps to cater to both moms and all the other wonderful attendees is an effort in the right direction.