Big Sam’s Funky Nation Goes to Austin: December Net2NO Recap

What raises the New Orleans tech community’s national profile, steals Pete Cashmore‘s girlfriend, and leaves with 35 people but comes back with more? Why its the Net2NO annual trip to South By Southwest Interactive, of course.

December’s Net2NO meet-up was a compelling pitch by Adele Tiblier and Jessica Rohloff to join this year’s Net2NO South By Southwest (SXSW) adventure.  On March 9-13, Net2NO will charter a bus and rent a house for New Orleans to make its presence known at the annual music, film, and technology conference in Austin, Texas. This year will be Net2NO third pilgrimage to the event.

Tiblier and Rohloff made their case for people to join by recounting the successes of past trips. Net2NO presence at the event has given the opportunity to correct the contradictory impressions that New Orleans was either still without water or underwater. It has also had a measurable impact on recruiting companies and people to relocate to New Orleans. On their first trip, the bus returned with more people than when they had left. Numerous former residents returned to the city after seeing the city’s renewed energy at the event.

And in typical New Orleans fashion, the Net2NO party has developed the reputation as being one of the best parties at SXSW Interactive. Their parties have feature DJ Othertempo (who happens to moonlight at Louisiana Economic Development) and Big Sam’s Funky Nation. Legend has it that Pete Cashmore’s girlfriend ditched the Mashable party to come kick it with the folks from the Big Easy.

The trip also provides an excellent opportunity to spend quality time with other members the New Orleans entrepreneurship and technology community. Past attendees raved about the sense of camaraderie and family they felt after spending days together on the bus, at the conference, and in cozy sleeping conditions in the house. The trip has even yielded an app that was built entirely on the bus ride home.

The cost of this year’s trip is estimated at around $500 for transportation, lodging, and a ticket to the conference. (A ticket on its own costs $750.) If you are interested in attending, volunteering, sponsoring, or just learning more, contact @adeletiblier or @jessnola.

If you think you might want to attend – go ahead and fill out this form and they’ll be in touch:

If you’ve been on the trip before, let us know what you thought of the trip and if you’ll be going again this year in the comments!