Anyone working with SQL Server will be well aware of the mountains of training material, blog posts, videos, code snippets, events and other helpful resources that helps anyone who comes into contact SQL Server regardless if they are a beginner or a seasoned veteran (even MVPs!). One of the pools of knowledge is SQL PASS.

is an independent, not-for-profit organization run by and for the community. With a growing membership of more than 100K, PASS supports data professionals throughout the world who use the Microsoft data platform.

Not only do they do Virtual Chapters, but they also do Local Chapters. Local Chapters are an excellent way to make connections with (physically) local fellow experts. I would highly recommend if your working with SQL Server to join, both a Virtual Chapter and Local Chapter, as they are both excellent ways to learn and build a network of friends who you can point you in the right direction when your stuck. Best of all, its FREE!!

My Local Chapter is run Mark Broadbent, a Microsoft Certified Master in SQL Server (MCM) and Microsoft Data Platform MVP (Most Valuable Professional). Mark has this year, rebranded SQL Server User Group from SQL Cambs to East Anglia SQL Server User Group. He done this after myself and a few others spoke to him about running more local user groups. I personally, didn’t want to setup a new, separate, user group that will end up competing with the other. Suffolk, Norfolk and Cambridgeshire are neighbours, they should be working together, not competing. Hopefully the new User Group name reflects this. I’ve been working with Mark at setting up the first East Anglia SQL Server User Group, which I am delighted is being held in Ipswich at the University Campus Suffolk (UCS) Waterfront Building. This is lovely modern building that, selfishly, is a 20min walk from my home or work – can’t get much more local!  It is also a 20 min walk to the train station and has free parking in the evenings so hopefully I’m not the only one who likes this venue 🙂

The first speaker (under the new name), will be Prathy Kamasani who has by some miracle been able to compress all the What’s new in SQL Server 2016 for a BI Professional into a single presentation. If you’ve been living under a rock for the past year, Microsoft has pulled out all the stops with SQL Server 2016 and given the whole Microsoft BI stack a update, even Reporting Services (SSRS)! They’ve been announcing some pretty major new features every month. It’s truly incredible but at the same time rather overwhelming. At the end of the meetup, you’ll up to speed with all the cool new features in SQL Server 2016.

Register here for free for What’s new in SQL Server 2016 for a BI Professional.

Hopefully I’ll see a lot of you there and we’ll have many more User Groups in 2016 and beyond and yes, pizza will be provided 🙂

This East Anglia SQL Server User Group meetup is sponsored by: