On May 5th, 6th, and 7th, the Missouri chapter of the Medical Group Management Association met in Branson, MO, for the 2021 conference.

The theme was “Riding the Waves of Healthcare.” After more than a year of pandemic shutdowns, critical care crisis, remote work whiplash, and isolation, it was a refreshing and fitting theme.

The event was attended by representatives of practices from across Missouri. The vendor hall bustled with business partners. The main stage and breakout rooms presented education and insight for all attendees across 3 days of learning, networking, and fun.

Everywhere I turned I saw happy faces, from old friends and people I’d never met. Everyone seemed to hold within them a sigh of relief. To be back at a conference, to be around our peers, to be learning together again – it was a long 2020 that saw all conferences and seminars and lunch and learns cancelled. Everyone said “We’re just so happy to be at a conference again.”

The light-hearted atmosphere extended to the receptions. A rousing opening night presentation by Paul Long spoke to the importance of connecting to fun in our workplaces. This mission was carried out at the conference, as the Thursday night reception featured a delicious beachy drink and a hula hoop competition!

All of this took place in Branson, at the Convention Center. It was a great location for such an event, as the small yet bustling Branson Landing offered food and shopping, and the tranquil waters below it made a beautiful backdrop. In the middle of the rolling and seemingly endless Ozark hills, it was a great way to escape for a few days and reconnect with our community.

Next year, the state conference will be in Branson again. I would encourage everyone who can to attend – and what’s more, bring your family! Parents, children, grandchildren, all will find fun amidst the shows, activities, and shopping of Branson, MO. Just don’t forget your swim trunks! (I did – luckily there were plenty of shops to grab some at, although I think they were overcharging me!)