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July 28, 2012 posted by Lindsay Ferrier

CheeseburgHer ’12: You Don’t Want to Miss It!

CheeseburgHer ’12: You Don’t Want to Miss It!

In 2005, I started this blog.

At that time, I didn’t know there were other mom bloggers online. I didn’t even know that what I was doing was called ‘blogging.’ I called it an ‘online diary.’ And shockingly, people started showing up to read it. And they came back. And they introduced themselves. And a lot of them were moms who also had ‘online diaries.’

Within just a few months, I had found my tribe. Very few moms were blogging in 2005 and there was absolutely no money in it. We were all doing it purely for the love of writing and community, and anyone who was blogging back then will tell you now- despite the fact that blogging has caught on and become a “thing” and nearly all of these mom bloggers have gone on to do really amazing things as a result of their blogs– back then it was really kind of awesome.

In 2006, some of those mom bloggers headed to San Jose for the first-ever BlogHer conference. I read their stories from home, looked at the photos of all these women meeting for the first time and having a great time together, and vowed that I would go the next year, come hell or highwater.

And I did.

In 2007, I somehow convinced my husband that I just HAD to go to Chicago for BlogHer ’07, and meet all of these amazing online friends in person.  I giddily took pictures with everyone I saw, like Sarah and Susan  Tanis, and really, it was like one big girls’ weekend. We laughed together, cried together, laughed until we cried together. We played hot potato with a stinky cheese.


And we crashed a party.

At the end of that weekend, we decided to have our own little get together in Yvonne and Lena’s hotel room. We asked everyone we saw to meet us there late Saturday night and we went all out, buying wine, vodka, orange juice…

…and, just to make things even more special, a few bags of McDonalds cheeseburgers and french fries. In a (perhaps slightly… drunken?) burst of creative inspiration, I put a bag on my head as the guests started to arrive.

 


Little did we know what we were starting.

Within minutes, several dozen women had packed into the room and made themselves comfortable, drinking, talking… and eating cheeseburgers and french fries.

Within a few more minutes, security showed up at the door. Yvonne and I did what any good party hosts would do at that moment.

We hid in the shower.

Meanwhile, Lena bravely faced the men at the door.

“We’re just writers, sir,” she said in a small voice. They looked past her into the room, at the women eating cheeseburgers, some wearing bags on their heads.

 


And they laughed.

And then they made everyone leave.

But tons of photos were taken and circulated around the Internet. Our room party became symbolic of the giggling girlfest that was BlogHer ’07. We learned a lot that weekend, but the biggest takeaway was this…

We needed to have another, bigger CheeseburgHer Party the next year.

For BlogHer ’08, Alpha Mom  sponsored it. We reserved a hotel suite. We bought lots and lots of wine and burgers. And clearly, word of the CheeseburgHer Party had spread by the time BlogHer ’08 rolled around, because instead of a few dozen women showing up…

A few hundred women- and men- showed up.

This photo is actually not the party. This is the hallway outside the party. Our suite simply wasn’t big enough to hold all of the bag hat-wearing, cheeseburger-eating revelers, so the party spilled outside of our door. And that attracted some attention.

 

Some unwanted attention.

And even though we begged and pleaded with the security guards who showed up, and tried to bribe them with cheeseburgers and cupcakes, they shut our CheeseburgHer Party down.

Which ended up making our party waaaaaay more badass on the Internet. That year, the CheeseburgHer Party went viral.

And it attracted the attention of McDonalds.

McDonalds sponsored our party at BlogHer ’09. This time, we had the Presidential Suite at our disposal, with this view of Chicago from the windows.

CheeseburgHer had hit the big time.

 

Once again, several hundred burgers were eaten, and several hundred bag hats were worn.


And once again, security showed up to shut us down.

You might think this party had reached its zenith at that point. Oh no. In 2010, BlogHer made it the official BlogHer closing party. This time around, it was in an actual ballroom, complete with huge buffet tables laden with cheeseburgers and Snack Wraps. And this time, there was a DJ and a dance floor. I didn’t know it until 2010, but there’s not much better in life than dancing with a bag on your head, WHILE EATING AS MANY MCDONALDS CHEESEBURGERS AS YOU WANT.  This is basically what heaven looks like, y’all:

BlogHer ’10 was also the year of the Cheeseburger Bed.

That party went over so well that we’ve been BlogHer’s official closing party every year since. In 2011, McDonalds did the impossible and added a french fry station to the party. This was a tricky feat to accomplish, because the fries had to be cooked and served on-site in order to be good- but they did it. And since McDonalds french fries are on my list of all-time absolute FAVORITE foods in the world, I think that was the year I reached CheeseburgHer Nirvana.

I also think that BlogHer ’11 was our best party yet. Check it out…

We had an AWESOME DJ, who was excellent at figuring out exactly what thousands of sweaty women eating burgers and wearing bag hats would want to dance to. And because of that,


We had a PACKED dance floor all night long.

We also had lots and lots and lots of cheeseburgers …


…and french fries!


Those who were tired from dancing could relax on one of the beds lining the dance floor!


Much better than chairs and sofas, don’t you think?


Although bed jumping was also a popular activity…

As if that weren’t enough, McDonalds also provided a table full of scissors, markers, stickers, and glitter glue so that people could personalize their bag hats. And personalize them they did …

So. AMAZING.

And this brings us to BlogHer ’12. Yes, we’re doing it again.

And once again, it’s going to be FABULOUS. As always, everyone with a BlogHer pass  is invited, and if you’re not a burger eater, not to worry- Once again, we’re including a vegetarian buffet (with REALLY good food), so that everyone can enjoy themselves.

CheeseburgHer has changed quite a bit from 2007. The mom blogging world in particular is huge now, and these days when people ask me if I’m going to BlogHer and I tell them yes because I host the CheeseburgHer Party each year, they tend to look at me in disbelief. “Really?” they say. “That’s YOU?”

That’s the power of CheeseburgHer, y’all.

But for all of the changes, the essence of our party remains the same. We’re still a roomful of (mostly) women, dancing, laughing, eating, drinking, and having the time of our lives.


Bring on CheeseburgHer ’12!

Will you be there?

  • http://www.facebook.com/kaileea1 Kailee Adams

    You bet your ass I’ll be there!!!!!! Best. Story. EVERRRRR!!!

    • suburbanturmoil

       Hooray! See you on Saturday!

  • Shellie McHenry

    I have caught the blogging bug… and then got too busy to keep up with it, on and off since 2008. Every year it’s usually all the Blogher posts that light that fire. I’m back “on” blogging… actually before Blogher for once… so maybe if I can keep prioritizing this sanity-saving piece of Net over the next year, I will join yall for ’13!

    • suburbanturmoil

       YES!

  • Hanan

    I never heard this sorry before, but how cool! I had a blast last year, and am going to stop by again this year, if the baby allows it ;)

    • suburbanturmoil

       Hope to see you there, Hanan!

  • jenniferalsoknownasthewife

    This story is hands down just utterly fabulous!  I cannot wait to experience it first hand.

    • suburbanturmoil

       It’s so much fun. SO much fun!

  • http://twitter.com/4hatsandfrugal Amiyrah Martin

    Oh man…I never knew that the CheeseburgHer party had such history. I’d only seen pictures from the past few years and always thought it was an official BlogHer party. You ladies rock. I can’t wait to party it up with you next week.

    • suburbanturmoil

       Can’t wait to see you!

  • http://www.poliogue.com/ Heather B.

    I still remember the night that Yvonne and Lena said to come to their room in Chicago. I cannot believe how long it has been. Ridiculous. See you next week!

    • suburbanturmoil

      If you can say you were at the first CheeseburgHer Party, that is truly something! I remember you, Jen Lancaster, Catherine Connors, Julie Marsh, Kimberly Petro, Jen Satterwhite, Busy Mom, who else?

  • SuzyQuzey

    This story never gets old. I love it! Can’t wait for CheeseburgHer next week!

    • suburbanturmoil

       I’m so excited! And I just can’t hide it!

  • http://www.facebook.com/abbie.allthatmakesyou Abbie Allthatmakesyou

    I am photoshopping myself into these pictures since I WASN’T THERE!  How did I not know about this counterculture before I started blogging February 29th?  Oh, I will be there #CheeseburgHer 2012.  I will be there.  

    • suburbanturmoil

       Fantastic! Be sure and introduce yourself! :)

  • Kari

    OMG I so wanna go to this!!!

  • http://uncoveringbliss.com/ Eileen Smit

    I’ll be there! And that’s me in the bed jumping pic, well I’m sitting, but woot! (I somehow NEVER end up in pictures at parties and I have to tell people I swear I was there).

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