Member Services

Why “The Big Easy”?

By Chris Crutchfield, AgGateway Member Services

As I look forward to the AgGateway Annual Conference next week in New Orleans, I wonder, why is the city called “The Big Easy”? According to one source,, the term was coined in the 1960s by gossip columnist Betty Guillaud, comparing the fast-paced lifestyle of New York – the “Big Apple” – to the laid back, slower pace of New Orleans. While on that website, I found a few other fun facts worth sharing:

  1. Bourbon Street has nothing to do with alcohol (at least not regarding the origin of its name!). It was named after the Bourbon dynasty of France.
  2. New Orleans has more miles of canals than Venice, Italy. In the early 20th Century the canals were built to drain New Orleans’s swamps and marshes.
  3. Beignets were first introduced to the city by the French-Creole colonists in the 18th century. Café du Monde anyone?
  4. The New Orleans Streetcar is the oldest continuously operating streetcar in the world.
  5. It is illegal to ride on a Mardi Gras float without wearing a mask!

It may be easy to find trivia about “The Big Easy”, but how easy is it to get answers to your AgGateway questions? I’ll be you can guess my answer.

Are you wondering, “How do I start or join a Working Group”? or “Where can I find AgGateway standards? Or perhaps, “How do I use the AgGateway wiki?” The answer to these questions and more can be obtained by visiting the Member Services team throughout the conference. Member Services Live gives conference attendees the opportunity to visit one-on-one with Member Services to get questions answered and problems solved! Look for us at our desk near the registration table, and bring us your questions!

We also want to request that all attendees stop by the desk at least once to review your personal contact information with your organization. We want to be sure we have the most up-to-date contact information on file so that important AgGateway communications reach you. This will be especially important as we head into 2020 under our new operating model so that we can keep everyone well informed of changes and progress.

If you are an AGIIS Full Subscriber, we also want your input on a specific topic. The AGIIS Directory Oversight Committee (DOC), is currently represented by council segments. Under the new operating model in 2020, councils are being dissolved. To ensure the DOC maintains a broad representation across industries, we’d like you to complete the DOC representation matrix if you have not already done so. Forms will be available at the Member Services desk.

Lastly, for those new to the AgGateway organization or those wanting to know a bit more about AgGateway 2020, Member Services, along with representatives of the member advisory team, will be holding an AgGateway 101 session on Monday, November 4 at 10:00 am. This session provides the strategy and structure of AgGateway and how it operates.

It is shaping up to be an exciting conference in a fun, historic city. If there is anything that Member Services can do to help you get the most out of your annual conference, please don’t hesitate to come by the desk and let us see what we can do for you! Travel safe and I look forward to seeing you soon in The Big Easy!