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  Back to 2006 Conference Report Friends for Life 2006 - Wednesday

Friends for Life: Orlando 2006 - Wednesday

Wednesday was Focus Group Day at the conference. Twenty-three focus groups were offered by conference sponsors, and included topics ranging from "Important Decisions in the First Two Years" to "Continuous Blood Glucose Monitoring" to "Pick Your Favorite Flavor (glucose gel)!" The focus groups were limited to 30 participants per group, so they were very interactive and lively. Many thanks to the focus group leaders as well as the participants for getting an early start on the conference!

Exhibitors continued to set up their booths Wednesday morning, and the Quilt for Life crew got to work hanging the individual squares. It was quite an undertaking. The quilts are stored by number in large boxes, and they have to be arranged 'just so' in order for the display to work out correctly. It was more of an effort to get the display up this year due to some timing challenges – with forklifts still roaming the exhibit hall floor, the quilt crew needed to be very careful to protect the quilt squares from damage. Each square is priceless and irreplaceable.

Throughout the day, the registration area was a very busy place. Registration Coordinator Julia Mattingly, assisted by Bernadette Tull, Adriana Rodenheiser, Mary Podjasek, Lisa Anstine, and Joanne Stroud, kept the teams of registration volunteers organized and smoothly functioning. By the end of the day, nearly all registration packets had been picked up and everyone was accounted for!

On Wednesday afternoon, there was a First Timers Reception sponsored by BD for all those families (kids and adults!) who were joining a Friends for Life conference for the first time. Believe it or not, there were nearly 500 people in the room! CWD Staffer Lauren Lanning led a very fun ice breaker which literally forced people to get to know each other. Who in the room wears a size 6 1/2 shoe? Who has been to every single Friends for Life conference? Who is left-handed? You only find out if you meet other people! It was lots of fun and will definitely be a 'repeat' next year!

By 5:00, the exhibit hall was just about ready for the Grand Opening Reception. The red ribbon was hung ceremoniously across the entrance unit to the main doors and the giant scissors were ready to go. Right at 6:00, NBA star Chris Dudley welcomed conference participants and asked all the kids to come forward and join him in cutting the ribbon. And with that – the exhibit hall opened and the conference was officially underway! Many thanks to Roche Diagnostics for sponsoring Chris Dudley's participation in the conference and for sponsoring this opening reception. Chris spent a lot of time with our families and kids throughout the weekend, sharing stories, interacting on the Sports Panel, playing basketball with the kids, and simply being an inspiration to them.

A very special thanks to our young adult volunteers: Marissa Hitchcock, Kristin Dannemiller, Carolyn Billetdeaux, Mily Sapantong, Jennifer Jones, Melanie Peters. These young ladies assisted all day long with whatever needed doing, and their help was invaluable!

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NBA star Chris Dudley spoke to the CWD families at 6pm on Wednesday and ...
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... with help from many CWD kids, cut the ribbon to open Friends for Life: Orlando 2006 ...
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... and spent the rest of the evening autographing basketballs for excited CWD families
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Like many, Abbott's focus groups were full
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NFL Star Jay Leeuwenburg had some quiet time to prepare for his presentations
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Jim guided son Garrett on the slide at the front of the Novo Nordisk booth ...
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... while an ice sculpter entertained families at the back of the booth.
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Winter Olympian Kris Freeman spoke with families in the LifeScan booth
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Last Updated: Tuesday October 05, 2010 10:05:48
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