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Community Member

1. Hats Are Good

I had to make my HAT the first of these "month of InstructureCon" posts... because the hat was how most of my random InstCon conversations would start! "Hey, cool hat," somebody would say, or they would ask me if it was swag and where they could get theirs. That was all I needed to launch into my spiel about how I was the Panda-Drone from the Canvas Community, and how people had picked sessions for me to attend, etc. etc. Perfect way to launch a discussion about Community with literally every person I met at InstructureCon. I even talked about it with people who weren't part of the conference, like our nice shuttle drivers, the catering guys (some of the catering guys had impressive hats too!), people in my condo building, etc.

I wore the hat everywhere, all the time, which meant I was always getting questions, along with looks from people who seemed like they wanted to say something... even if they didn't come right out with it, ha ha. Wearing a T-shirt with a message is another good way to get conversations started, but the hat worked even better than a T-shirt because it was, well, weirder. And it really does help to have a conversation starter. Once a conversation gets going, I'm pretty much unstoppable... but getting a conversation started is not easy for me. The hat took care of that! It also was useful for people who were looking for me; they might not know my face, but they could look for the person in the drone hat. I tried to sit in the front row of every session I attended; here I am sitting next to at‌'s presentation (this was the first time I met Bonni in person... and I had just met Linda for the first time the night before!). The hat does help to stand out in a crowd (and InstCon was seriously crowded; more on that in a future post).


So, THANK YOU to awilliams for coming up with the idea of the Panda-Drone . I really liked having people find sessions for me to attend (I'll have more to say about that later)... and then the hat itself also proved to be a big part of my InstructureCon experience. If you too want a hat like this, just search Amazon for "propeller beanie" -- so many options (the banner image above is a "customers who bought this also bought..." screenshot from Amazon). I packed the hat very carefully both coming to Keystone and going home so that the propeller didn't get crushed. If I ever get to go to InstructureCon again, the hat will come with me!

Here's a tweet from Tuesday morning where I managed to take a video selfie with the propeller spinning... ready for InstructureCon lift-off! 🙂

Laura in the drone hat

There were other people with excellent hats also; the awesome ladies from Broward County had hats! I will be writing up a blog post later about their presentation:

Broward County school district at InstructureCon_ ladies in hats and erinhallmark also had hats... maybe they have a picture they can share here? Oh, had a great hat also that he wore during the Community presentation. And snufer‌ had some fabulous hats that were prizes at his presentation. Is there a picture of someone wearing that beautiful jester hat? I haven't checked out the Instagram stream at all yet; I bet there are hats there too! So, share your hat pix here, people! As I find more, I'll come back around to this post and include them. 🙂

Meanwhile, there will be more posts with this tag here at the Community; click anytime to see where I am so far:


Blog on, everybody!

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7 Replies
Community Team
Community Team

The hats were so much fun!  ❤️

Renee and Erin

Community Team presentation with hats

Ladies of Broward!

Oh my gosh, this is great: you found the ladies from Broward County!!! Hats of InstCon United!!! Thank you, erinhallmark!

Surveyor II

I forgot to tell you, laurakgibbs‌, that while it was extremely easy to find you with the infamous hat, I did also embarrass myself by going up to two other people during the conference, thinking that they were you. No, they were not wearing hats, but they did look like you a bit. 

I'm so glad to have had the opportunity to meet in person - and I also look forward to all that is to come in continuing to learn from you. 


Bonni Stachowiak | |  @bonni208

Oh, that is so funny,‌, because the same thing happened to me! Especially with my eyesight, I could have used way way way bigger fonts on people's name tags; I made several mix-ups like that.

Anyway, we are now ready to recognize each other in any crowd, and I am excited about getting to explore the world of transcripts you are making available for the podcasts... and I signed up for an Amazon alert about your forthcoming book too. It sounds wonderful!!! (And Robert Talbert is on the list of people I would to meet in person someday too!)

Community Coach
Community Coach

I wore my Canvassador hat, but it did not engage quite as well as my vintage InstCon T-shirts.


What a cute picture,‌! Hats are good, and T-shirts are good too! 🙂

Community Advocate
Community Advocate

I don't know if the hats from my session were sported, but I hope they made appearances at the carnival!  :smileygrin: