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12 Tips for an Amazing RIS 2014 Experience

Whether you’re new to the Reviving the Islamic Spirit Conference or you’re a seasoned attendee, here are some insider tips that will help you navigate RIS like a pro. Make the best of your RIS weekend – be a savvy attendee.

1. Know what’s happening.

Calendar iconPrint out/review the schedule in advance; plan out your days accordingly. Tip: Give yourself a 10 minute buffer before and after each lecture for time fluctuations in the schedule.

  • Use your Google calendar or other scheduling apps on your smartphone that way it’s easy and convenient to access.
  • Keep up to date on schedule changes by visiting the RIS booth in the bazaar.

2. Avoid the bathroom rush.

With thousands of people in the venue, bathrooms can get quite crowded. Here is a list of the least used washrooms in the south building, in order of least used to most used:

  • Level 700:1.Level 700 - 1-new
    look for room 703, behind it, you will see washrooms that most people don’t know about. This is also the part of the conference venue which has the least traffic.
  • Level 600:
    222Look to the right of the “registration area” there are two washrooms. People initially overlook these, but even these start to see heavy use by the end of the second day/third day of the conference.
  • Level 700:3.Level 700 - 2-new
    Look for room 718B. To the right you will see washrooms. These are also lightly used early on, but eventually more people find out
    about them as they are right next to the children’s program and babysitting.
  • Level 800: For relatively low usage on the main conference level use the bathrooms in the bazaar – they are located on the other side of the prayer area.

3. Be a smart shopper: plan your bazaar trip. Abaya Sale

With hundreds of stalls in the RIS bazaar, it can get overwhelming

  • Make a list of items you would like to purchase at the bazaar.
  • Use the first two days to browse/compare. Make commitments day 3. A lot of stalls will reduce their prices on the last day before closing time.

4. Beat the food lines. Plate and cutlery

If possible, stagger your own meal times around major lunch/dinner breaks – get lunch either before lunch break, or after. It’ll save you a lot of time. Bring snacks from home to eat between meals. Dhuhr/Lunch break is from 12-1:30pm, Asr/Maghrib/Dinner break is 4:00-6:00pm.

5. Stay hydrated.water bottle

Bring a water bottle with you (refill at water fountains or the water stations inside the conference hall). Conference days can get quite long, and when your brain is working hard taking in all that beneficial knowledge, staying hydrated will keep you energized and focused.

6. Unburden yourself: use the coat check.

Coat Check

Hate lugging those big winter jackets around? Use the coat check, it’s well worth it. Available on the 600 level.

7. Re-live the inspiring moments.

Head over to the RIS booth in the bazaar – enter through the main bazaar doors and it’ll be right in front. Here you can find DVDs of the lectures you watched as well as meet some of the speakers!

8. Meet the speakers. speaker on a podium

Want to run into one of your favourite speakers? Here are some tips:

  • Wait around in the area underneath the main escalators, sometimes speakers will lounge there to talk to attendees if they have time after their lecture.
  • Check the bazaar: speakers will browse the bazaar too! You can usually spot them by looking for a large group of people, like a school of fish!
  • Book signings: Check the RIS booth for any scheduled book signings.
  • After the last lecture of the conference – which is a panel including most of the conference speakers, speakers will take some time to speak to attendees (again, in the area behind the main escalators on level 800).

9. Learn about new things happening within your community

The RIS bazaar is a great place to find new initiatives, new businesses, new causes etc. Added bonus: there’s always someone giving something away!

  • Find a cause you are passionate about and consider volunteering some of your time.

10. Reduce, Reuse, Recycle. Recycle

Overwhelmed with all the flyers? Take a minute to go through everything and find things you might regret throwing away – be responsible, recycle what you don’t need.

  • When speaking to someone whose business/product/cause you’re interested in, write down some points or contact information on the flyer/card so that you remember why it was important.

11.Give back!

Give back

Every year, RIS collects food and clothing donations for the needy, give back to your community by bringing in something – even if its a small item each day of the conference. Get involved: find a new cause to volunteer for or donate towards.

12. Improve your salah, diagnose your Fatiha!

What if we told you, in just 5-7 minutes you could drastically improve the quality of your prayers? Come visit us at the Tanzeel Booth (Booth # 817, 819 in the center of the bazaar). Take a live Qur’an class with one of our highly trained and certified English speaking Egyptian teachers. You will be able to correct common mistakes in recitation of surah Fatiha and get a better understanding of the Ummul Kitaab (Mother of the Book).
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