Chopped Academy 2016 for Food Bloggers

I’ve spent the last few years trying to better understand the craft — both the artistry, skill and technology — of food blogging. I’ve interviewed some of the best of the best on the Chopped Podcast and I put together a food blogging conference too. If you’re a food blogger, you might want to check it out. Here’s more details about Chopped Conference 2016.

Chopped Conference 2016 - The details about the conference, the speakers, and how to learn more about food blogging!

For those of you who have a food blog, you will understand this statement: being a food blogger is not easy. But just because it’s not easy, doesn’t mean it’s not worth doing, it just means there’s a bit of a learning curve in getting it right.

That’s why two years ago I started an event called Chopped Conference. Because I went to some conferences catered toward food bloggers and I felt like there was room for improvement. I wanted to see a conference that felt inclusive and real, where everyone felt welcomed. To be honest, that’s the best environment to learn from anyway!

2016 Chopped Conference for Food Bloggers

That’s why I created Chopped Conference.

The Mission of Chopped Conference is to bring together different communities of people with a passion for food around the core ideas of love, family, and community, and finding ways to share that via blogging to a larger audience.

I also started the Chopped Podcast too. I’ve been spending the last year and half interviewing food bloggers and talking about what works and what doesn’t work.

Honestly? I expected to find some kind of secret to success, but what I found instead was that the most successful food bloggers have created a sense of community. They’ve created community with their readers and with other like-minded bloggers.

Chopped Conference 2016 features amazing speakers and is the perfect event for food bloggers to connect with others and grow their business

That’s where the Chopped Conference is key. Going to an inclusive food blogging conference can help you meet other like-minded, passionate bloggers who are working hard to make their passion into a successful career.
Kansas City River Market Event Place Building, the home of the KC ChoppedCon

Do you believe in magic? I’m not talking about the magician kind of magic or the witchy kind of magic. I’m talking about the Elizabeth Gilbert Big Magic kind of magic.

Chopped has a touch of magic to it. And we’re going to use that as a theme this year. I read this definition of the word magic:

Magic is the power of apparently influencing the course of events by using mysterious or supernatural forces.

Our mysterious and supernatural forces? The power of learning and connecting together. The power of believing in yourself. The power of passion directed toward achieving a goal. You can’t see or feel connection and passion. That’s what makes them supernatural, but they’re there. And when you find ways to tap into them? Watch out world!

You can be a part of the magic too. Come to Choppedand see for yourself.

Chopped will be held in Kansas City, Missouri and do you know what makes KC so perfect? It’s right in the heart of the Midwest and that means it’s an easy drive for SO many food bloggers. Bloggers from Des Moines, Little Rock, St. Louis, Minneapolis, Nashville, Oklahoma City, and more.

For those who may need to fly, well, KC has one of the best airports in the country. I’ve found that most destinations are a two-hour (or less) flight away from KC. Places like, Orlando, New York, Toronto, DC, Denver, Seattle, and Phoenix – they’re all flights that are less than two hours to KC. Pretty Sweet.

Chopped Conference 2016 Speakers

But enough about logistics. Let’s start talking some of the exciting stuff. Like Speakers!

Chopped Conference is a one-day, power-packed conference where you’ll be wowed by our impressive line-up of speakers. Here are a few of them:

Jessica Merchant will be a speaker at the Chopped Conference 2016

Jessica Merchant — Jessica is the authentic soul behind the site, How Sweet Eats. She’s a big James
Taylor fan and that’s some of the motivation behind the name of her site. Jessica is going to be speaking about the importance and the skill of maintaining your authenticity as a food blogger. It can be a difficult balancing act sometimes, maintaining your own voice in the sea of voices out there, but Jessica does a wonderful job and her presentation will a beacon for us all.

Emma Chapman will be speaking at Chopped Conference 2016

Emma Chapman — I don’t know where to start. Emma is such a source of inspiration to millions of people who follower her and her sister, Elsie, on the site A Beautiful Mess. Emma will be joining the speaker lineup at Chopped Conference 16, talking about ways to monetize your food blog. Because here’s the deal, people. If you love what you do, there are ways to make a living as a food blogger. Emma will be sharing how to monetize your blog. It’s one thing to have a loyal following, it’s another thing to be able to turn your blog into a career. Emma will share how it has worked for them.

Lenny Ferreira — Everyone knows that video is the thing you have to be doing. Lenny will be speaking about the trends with video, including working with brands, including video on
social media and more.

ali-headshot-2-2Ali Ebright — We are blessed with some talented bloggers in the Kansas City area. Ali Ebright is with
the site Gimme Some Oven, and yet this will be her first year speaking at the conference. We’re so excited to have her. She’s going to be speaking about Navigating the Unpredictable Ups-and-downs of Business, Dealing with Comparison, Avoiding Burn-out, and Loving Your Blog,

Amber Bracegirdle — You may start your blog with a passion for recipes, but understanding SEO as a tool that you can use to help get your message to a larger audience is important. Amber is an SEO expert and will be sharing about SEO hacks for food bloggers, including addressing site speed and more.

Social Media Live Panel — Our morning panel will include Bev Weidner of Bev Cooks, Monique Volz of Ambitious Kitchen, Kristen Doyle of Dine and Dish, and Phi Kelnhofer of Sweet Phi, and will be moderated by Lynn Lovejoy of Order in the Kitchen. They’ll be talking about the ways you can use live social media — like SnapChat, Instagram Stories, and Facebook Live — to personalize your brand, reach a larger audience, and get more connected with your audience.

Working with Brands Panel — Our afternoon panel will include Lauren Grier of Climbing Grier Mountain, Cara Ansis of Fork and Beans, Hana Bieliauskas, a PR rep, and Mairead Dunphy of Stonyfield. They’ll be getting real about how food bloggers and brands can work together.

Cara Ansis — Cara is the creative genius behind the site Fork and Beans and she’s going to be wrapping up the day talking about self reflection for bloggers and how to tap into our creative souls every day.

There’s more going on throughout the day, you won’t want to miss it!

What About Fun?

If fun is what you’re after, we’ll have plenty of that too at Chopped Conference 2016. The party begins with the Thursday night opening reception. We’ll also host a Friday night post-conference happy hour. We’ll have lots of great food, including a parfait bar by Stonyfield Organics (including some of their dairy-free yogurt)! Lunch will be provided by Qdoba, so we’ll all be ready for a siesta come the afternoon. But there’s no time for a siesta, because we have an awesome afternoon lineup to keep everyone chipper and ready to learn. Besides, Nuts.com is providing all the goodies for an awesome Friday afternoon break.

And I just have to mention the conference gift bag, because I’ve decided that a good gift bag is a lot like the bread at an Italian restaurant. When a restaurant has good bread, you KNOW the food is going to be good.

The Chopped Conference 2016 gift bag is going to be full of things like Justin’s Nut Butters, Bob’s Red Mill’s Quinoa, a coupon for a very popular and colorful shoe brand, Guy’s potato chips, Nature’s Best granola samples, nuts from Nuts.com and so much more!

Welcome Bloggers sign

Be a Part of the Magic

Come join us and be a part of the magic at Chopped Conference 2016.

I can’t wait to see you there!

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