A Memorable Experience – Misfit Conference Fargo

Fargo Theater - Misfit Conference

As I headed to Fargo, North Dakota to attend the first Misfit Conference created by my friends AJ Leon and Melissa Leon I was anxious to set my feet on the ground after the rocky plane ride I had just experienced. Perhaps that was going to be an indication of how the conference was going to differentiate itself from ones I had attended previously.

The next few days were going to create a memorable experience that would push me to continue my path to where I want to go next. Like I read the posts of other attendees, the  Misfit Conference was an introduction to many new friends and a better understanding of previous people I had met in my past experiences.

A Memorable Flight

On my flight from Chicago to Fargo, I experienced the scariest flight ever. For approximately 2 hours the turbulence on the plane was horrible. That has happened only a few times in my 33 years on this earth.  The only thing I could think about was being on the ground. On my way to the hotel, I was with the flight crew and over hearing how complicated it was to get through the many storms and finally land in Fargo. I felt less of a coward when I understood snippets of their conversation of how bad it was in the air and was very grateful to be headed to my hotel room after a long day of flying from San Juan to Fargo.

Emotional RollerCoaster

It was only  the beginning of many emotional highs and lows I experienced at the Misfit Conference. The few lows where linked closely to the fact that one of my clients and friend lost her husband to criminals targeting small business owners on the Island. The speakers shared so much of themselves  that on a few occasions what they spoke about made me face the reality  that my friend is now a widow in her early thirties taking care of two kids, which triggered many emotions that where expressed in tears.

The many high’s where brought upon the great people I met and the unique interactions  I had with them.  It’s amazing to think what an awesome job Melissa and AJ did by moving such talented and kind hearted individuals into one space.

A Higher & Creative Representation of Attention to Detail

The details of the conference where planned in a healthy disorder. At times things felt spontaneous but knowing AJ, Melissa, and Jessie I know it was   planned and harmonized in a creative way. As an ex-military instructor, security consultant, and IT auditor I can tell you that I love breaking things apart and analyzing them in depth.  In the case of the Misfit Conference there where so many precisely executed and planned details it was hard to keep up.

From the art placement, to food items selected (especially the vegan ones, which I am very grateful for ),  to the comfortable antique refurbished chairs, inspiring speakers from diverse backgrounds, and the music that was played live for us by local artists made me think of a quote by one of the speakers which describes it in 5 words:

“Experiments are intentionally created imperfections”.

I was even happier when seeing that not even paper cups where used we  drank out of reusable containers and two beautiful mugs made  the trip back with me. Embracing a more minimalist me I gave the other one to my close neighbor and friend.

Fargo Mug

Enchanting Imperfections

I have to confess I fell in love with the many imperfections I experienced throughout my whole experience.

I have never been to a conference or gathering where:

  • So many things surprised me
  • Made me smile and laugh
  • Made me cry
  • Made me get so deep into each element I lost track of time and the world outside that conference room.

The mix of those who visited Fargo like me to the People who live in Fargo.

  • From Greg Tehven who gave us a bit of his soul on stage and later on I was able to see how much of a leader he is in his community and how much he is loved.
  • Nichole Rae who gifted us with some cool typography, art, and prints that we all left with to a cool message on my Misfit Moleskin.
  • To the voice of Randi Olsen who on our last night we listened too while we got ready to say our good-bye.
  • The lens of Jesse Hoorelbeke who captured many moments to help us as reminders of the great experience as a photographer.

Randy Singing

Overall Fargo will be a unique adventure I will always cherish.

PS: My next post I will share how my experienced helped me clear my head on to my next ventures and my new company which I am currently building with the help of my core team. If you want to receive my next blog posts in your inbox feel free to subscribe to my newsletter.

Band of Musicians singing at Misfit Conference

Special thanks to AJ LEON, Melissa, Cheeze, Mirko and Genevieve who created such a unique experience for all of us.

Video Recap of the Misfit Conference by AJ Leon

Misfit Con Fargo 2013 from Misfit, Inc. on Vimeo.

More Pictures

Arrival at Fargo


  1. Marcella Chamorro on July 17, 2013 at 9:55 pm

    Gracias, Raul! PS. Love the fact that JJ and I are hugging all over that video. =D

    • Raul Colon on July 17, 2013 at 9:56 pm

      @mchamorro:disqus I smiled when I saw that. Super cool… Un abrazo a JJ.

  2. melissaleon on July 17, 2013 at 10:41 pm

    Love this post Raul!

    • Raul Colon on July 17, 2013 at 11:28 pm

      @mleon010:disqus thanks again for making this possible.

  3. alysomani on July 20, 2013 at 4:05 am

    Great post Raul: Looking forward to our conversation on Wednesday!

    • Raul Colon on July 20, 2013 at 12:17 pm

      @alysomani:disqus thanks for taking the time to read it. Looking forward to chatting with the group on Wednesday!

  4. C.C. Chapman on June 11, 2014 at 9:52 am

    Beautiful post and glad to hear the flight home wasn’t as crazy as the one to get there.

    Great to see each other and to meet you family!

    • Raul Colon on June 11, 2014 at 10:23 am

      2013 was a Crazy year and I think having Misfit Conference in May helped me get through the worst. I have to thank @mleon010:disqus, AJ, and the rest of the misfits for making my 2014 a lot brighter.