For many years The Magic Zoo has exhibited at some of the busiest veterinary conferences in the country. I love the opportunity to mingle with my customers and find out what Magic Zoo designs they’ve been hoping I’ll create next. By now, many of the veterinarians I meet at the conferences have become more than acquaintances: they are real friends.
I only do a few vet conferences these recent years, since most of my business is on the internet now. But I still enjoy them. One of my favorites is the Southwest Veterinary Symposium, an artist-friendly event where not only do they give the exhibitors and attendees a great hot lunch two days in a row, but they encourage the participation of artists in the exhibit hall. If you’ve ever been to a vet conference, you know that the huge majority of exhibitions consist of drug companies, instrument peddlers, dog and cat toy sellers, animal food distributors and so on.
There are always a few oddballs like me, creating animal-related work as jewelry, paintings, sculpture and the like. But this conference actually seeks out those makers who are centered around animals. This is rare, indeed!
The other thing I love about this Texas conference, held every year either in Ft. Worth or San Antonio is that the promoters have animals brought right into the exhibit hall! One year they held armadillo races, a real hoot. This year they brought in some gorgeous long-horned cattle (My husband couldn’t resist taking a photograph of them) and some exotic critters from the zoo. Unfortunately, I missed both the exotic animal show and the rumored pig races this time. Sometimes I have to handle customers at my booth!
Texas veterinarians are a breed unto themselves. Independent, strong, opinionated and funny. This is one conference where ten gallon hats, string ties and jeans replace the white doctor jackets.
And these Texas veterinarians are very good to The Magic Zoo. That’s why we keep coming back!
This year the event was held in San Antonio, a town which definitely has an interesting history. We didn’t get much of a chance to explore it this time, but in the past we’ve wandered through the Alamo and visited the old missions in the surrounding area. I recommend spending some days in this fabulous city the next time you’re in the area.
If you have never seen my veterinary jewelry, you might want to take a peek! After all, most of us animal lovers have a veterinarian we are especially fond of. Sometimes these special men and women deserve a little something extra for all the hard work and care they give to our beloved pets.