Tuesday, August 13, 2019

Meow Meetup Chicago 2019 - A Fabulous Weekend!

Much to the delight of cat lovers, cat-themed conventions are popping up all over. I've had a lot of fun attending Cat Camp NYC three times, as well as Catsbury Park Cat Convention in NJ. A few weeks ago I had the pleasure of attending Meow Meet Up Chicago with a group of my great cat blogging friends. Friends, cats, cat-themed merchandise, cat-centric presentations - what could make for a better weekend? 




Meow Meet Up, the Midwest’s first and largest cat-themed convention, is an “immersive experiential event” where cat lovers can don their cat ears and cat attire with pride while they mingle with like-minded people. I wrote a preview post all about it that you can read here

During the weekend of July 20 - 21, almost 4,000 cat lovers from 27 states and Canada flowed into the Donald E. Stephens Convention Center in Rosemont, IL. 

Catnip Times|Meow Meetup Chicago

The venue was very impressive. It was spacious and comfortable, which allowed attendees to move easily through the aisles. There was plenty of room to not only visit the 58 vendor tables to peruse the many cat-related items for sale (I bought two of the little cat mirrors for my cat sitters and they loved them!)  ...

Catnip Times|Meow Meetup Chicago

...but shelters and rescue groups as well. 


Catnip Times|Meow Meetup Chicago

I was so impressed with the attention to details and the creativeness of the special events. The onsite Cat Cafe had a french theme, complete with a bench in front of the Eiffel Tower and pastries for sale. 


Catnip Times|Meow Meetup Chicago

The cat yoga room was very zen and inviting. 


Catnip Times|Meow Meetup Chicago

There was a Meowter Space Lounge, complete with a kitty astronaut and adult beverages for sale. It was the purrfect place to grab a seat, catch your breath, and look over any notes you took. 


Catnip Times|Meow Meetup Chicago


Local makeup artists volunteered for the Pampurr Pawlor, where guests could get a cat tattoo or some really fun nail decals. I got a tattoo of our pal Summer and some cute black cat nail decals. (The artists had such a great time last year and came back for year two!) 


Catnip Times|Meow Meetup Chicago

Adoption was a big theme of the event, which you know is near and dear to my heart. The adoption lounge was run by Almost Home Foundation, an organization that depends 100% on events to adopt our their cats because they rely on fosters. 


Catnip Times|Meow Meetup Chicago
Photo Courtesy Catnip Times/Meow Meetup

There were approximately 16 adoptions at the event and some more post-event. In total, about 25% of the cats/kittens at the event went to their forever homes. 


Catnip Times|Meow Meetup Chicago
Photo Courtesy Catnip Times/Meow Meetup

There are so many things I love about events like Meow Meetup, and one is making connections with people. It was great seeing old friends, like Chris from Weruva


Catnip Times|Meow Meetup Chicago

and meeting new people like the folks from Tornado Towel (which you'll be hearing more about in the near future, so stay tuned to the blog.)


Catnip Times|Meow Meetup Chicago

I sat through some amazing presentations which included The Healing Power of Pets, Fear Free: Be the Change, Enriching Your Cats' Indoor Life, and Insights From an Animal Communicator. I walked away with a renewed enthusiasm for writing and some great topic ideas. I had the pleasure to sit and chat with Anne Beall, who is a psychologist and cat advocate. Needless to say, we had a lot in common! 

A very fun event was the After Pawty on Saturday night. It was held at a local live music venue that was fantastic! 


Catnip Times|Meow Meetup Chicago
Photo courtesy of Catnip Times/Meow Meetup


Yummy appetizers were served, along with cat-themed drinks. I enjoyed a very potent Meow-garita on the outside balcony with my blogging friends. 


Catnip Times|Meow Meetup Chicago
Photo courtesy Jenny of As the World Purrs

What would a cat-themed convention be without celebrity meet and greets? There were plenty at Meow Meetup, including Lola and Lexy's pal Summer



Catnip Times|Meow Meetup Chicago

Catnip Times|Meow Meetup Chicago

As usual, Summer was the purrfect celebrity and greeted her fans very gracefully in between her wardrobe changes. 

I had a fabulous time at Meow Meetup Chicago! There was so much more I wanted to do, but only so many things to fit into the day. For more details on the fun stuff that was offered, read my post here, and watch their video below. 




Thousands of dollars were raised for rescues and thousands of people had a good time celebrating their love for cats. I would say that's a success! Lauren Miele, founder of Catnip Times and Meow Meetup says "the feedback we've received both during and after the event has been amazing. From offering fun and educational sessions from cat experts at the top of their field, to one-of-a-kind experiences, we feel we succeeded in educating and delighting attendees over the weekend! People crave information about their cats and we're really proud that we could help cat owners form a deeper bond with their cats through both educational and fun activities."

Thank you, Lauren, for the opportunity to have a press pass to cover the event, and for being so hospitable to my group. It was such a pleasure meeting you and seeing your passion in action. 

I fell in love with Chicago, and I'm looking forward to visiting again. Hopefully I'll make that trip next year to Meow Meetup 2020! 

Have you ever been to a cat-themed convention? Tell us about it in the comments. 


Dawn 








12 comments:

  1. SO wish I could have been there as well. I recognized three of the bloggers in the picture.

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  2. I am so glad that I went to Meow MeetUp Chicago too! I learned a TON of stuff, and of course, have lots of blog material too. Plus, I made some friends, and visiting with folks that I know about but hadn't met before was the bestest!

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  3. Such a wonderful, wonderful event! The Dad wishes he could go but he has probably attended his last even since he absolutely refuses to go on an airplane.

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  4. I had so much fun at Meow Meetup, and I loved being a Meet and Greet cat! My human said she loved seeing you again, and so did I!

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  5. this was a great recap! Wish I could have afforded to go, I ADORE Chicago and have been there many times. This looks like it was the PURRFECT event! Like Brian though, the thought of flying no longer thrills me (unless I am going to Hawaii lol), and with my granddaughter getting older, blogging just isn't as important to me at all as it once was. But this was a great recap!

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  6. We hope Dad can go next year and he is too. Thanks Dawn for a really nice reporting of the fun

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  7. What a fun time it was! I can't wait for next year. ~Island Cat Mom

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  8. What an amazing event. I just know I would go broke at a cat convention.

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  9. That looks like such a wonderful time. I wish I could have gone. XO

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  10. Meow Meetup sure looks like it was fun! We went to Cat Camp NYC, and hung out with your Mommy!

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  11. WOW! What a great meow meet-up. We wished we lived any closer to be pawt of such a great event😸Pawkisses for a Happy Thursday🐾😽💞

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Thank you for your comment! We love meowing with you!

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