The End of SQLRally in the US

I saw it in the Connector, but just had time to read the minutes to see what was behind the decision to end the SQLRally franchise in the US. The minutes had precious little to say:

The Board evaluated the revenue, resources, and sustainability of the SQLRally NA model and decided that there will not be a SQLRally NA in the near term. The Board discussed the need to communicate this message to the community. Any feedback from the community should be directed to Bill.

Near term means not in 2013, and not in 2014 because no one will be budgeting for it. That to me just confirms what I said when no 2013 event was scheduled – it’s dead in the US.

We had two successful Rally’s, why stop?

The funny thing is the upcoming BA Conference feels a lot like SQLRally BI Edition. Hopefully with more attendees. Definitely more expensive.

I’m biased of course, I sweated the details on the first one. I knew then we wouldn’t get it all right and that it would need tweaking, but it was worth doing and I think still is. I look back and while I still love the idea of giving our members a more affordable option and filling the space between SQLSaturday and the Summit, the part I most mourn for is we won’t be doing as much to grow the next generation of leaders. It’s not the end of the world, but it’s a missed opportunity.

It might be a good decision, it’s hard to tell. I think it’s a shame the Board didn’t challenge themselves and us by saying “we need to change this to keep going” or “we can keep going if you can do with x dollars and y hours, and no more”. That’s where it started,with the Board saying we could do the first one with a guarantee of $25,000 in working capital.

4 thoughts on “The End of SQLRally in the US

  1. This is sad for me, considering that the Orlando SQL Rally was my first major community experience and set me on the path to where I am today. I understand the financial challenges as well as the struggle to define just what the event was supposed to be, so I suppose I understand the decision, but that doesn”t make me happy about it.

    Maybe the BA Conference will fill this gap, but I”m not sure. It strikes me that it appeals to a different audience than the other PASS events. On the other hand, SQL Saturday is growing by leaps and bounds, so maybe it can fill that gap instead. I only hope that, in the absence of a SQL Rally, SQL Saturday will get even stronger support from PASS so that we can continue to grow the community.

    Thanks for your work on the Orlando Rally, Andy. You and that event had a tremendous impact on my career and I”ll always be grateful for it.


  2. Andy,

    I liked the idea of the SQLRally to because of a less expensive conference for some SQL Server professionals.

    Maybe the PASS board sees a strain on resources with so many SQLSaturdays and the Summit. Maybe pay some more volunteers (mini-board/regional boards) to help with those events.



  3. Mike, I think the BA conf is a different audience. Not a bad thing, just early days. We”ll see on that. SQLSaturday does continue to grow, amazing to watch! It”s always nice to hear that volunteer work pays off. We know it does, but hearing it is definitely a lift. You”re paying it forward, which to me is the big win for me, you, and the rest of the community.


  4. Thomas, it was a strain. Part of that is good, we need to expand our limits some. Part of that isn”t good, investment of time has to make sense in some way. On the money side it was risk as the issue rather than true spend, as far as I know both events came in at a slight profit, but the level of risk seemed high to me by comparison. I think time and risk could have been fixed.


Comments are closed.