ALA Annual 2010, Washington DC, is here and gone; I'm still unpacking my small bag of goodies and uploading pictures. For the first time, I was able to not only stay at an official ALA hotel, but also reserve said hotel through the ALA web site.
As is often the case when preparing to attend ALA annual, my blog narrative begins with procrastination; I waited to register until I knew funds may be available from work. I waited to find a hotel until I knew family traveling with me to the conference could finagle time off work. The chain of events worked well for registration, I got in the final day for advance registration, but not so well with my initial hotel search.
Several evenings of searching usual travel sites (Travelocity, Orbitz, Hotels.com, AAA, and Expedia) returned single hotel rooms starting at $250 and I needed two rooms for four days. I checked the ALA conference site for available hotels on a whim and half an hour later had reservations - two rooms, plural, at the Holiday Inn Capitol at a significantly lower conference rate. Not as grand as my hotel accommodations while at ALA Annual in 2007, this hotel was one block from the Smithsonian Air and Space Museum, an open air pool on the roof (pictured above), and free Internet access. Even better, the Gale shuttle bus picked up right outside the lobby doors throughout my conference stay.