Does it cost money to enter the competition? Also is the competition in front of an audience?
If you volunteer do you get the chance to attend any lecture you want and still partake in the competition? I understand tickets are $450-500 and I'm thinking about paying for it, but I also don't mind polishing glasses and getting my hands dirty if it means free admission.
I understand there are three parts to the exam (Theory, Tasting, and Practical Service). I'm studying for the advanced course and was just curious if anyone had any experience with the difficulty of the competition. I just want to make sure I can be a worthy competitor.
Thank you for your answers ahead of time.
First off, if you've never been to Texsom then what are you waiting for? In the past the competition has not been in front of a live audience. It perhaps mirrors the challenges of the Advanced Sommelier exam (or higher) but remember that competitions are always different than exams (you are trying to "out score" others on that day- you aren't passing or failing an exam)- and competitions are always worth entering!
I'm definitely planning on going! Thank you for the information.
Do you have any information on if the competition cost money or what volunteering entails?
Check the website. I am not sure of a cost associated with entering though I may be wrong. Volunteer information may be found there as well when they start taking requests for volunteers.
It doesn't have any information that answers my questions on their website. I've just subscribed to their e-mail updates. I'll probably just end up contacting someone closer to the registration.
For now time to study!
Exactly what Eric said. You have everything to gain by competing (and attending and volunteering). Hope to see you there!
Competitions are a very good way to get practice for exams without the pressure of having to pass. The more you put yourself in front of these high-pressure, "unlikely" service scenarios, the more prepared you will be come exam day. It doesn't really matter if you win--it's the journey, not the destination.
I have competed the last two years and I would not trade that experience for anything. Eric is correct in the level of difficulty of questions but remember you are competing against your peers and are studying for that level of difficulty anyways. I found it a great way to gauge where I am at in my studies, as humbling as the competition can be.
I am also very interested in participating in the competition. The website states that it is for people from Texas, Arkansas, Oklahoma, Louisiana and New Mexico. Does this preclude anyone from states other than those mentioned ? Looking at past participants on here it appeared that many came (and competed) from states other than those listed. Thanks
To my knowledge, you do have to be from one of those states listed to compete. You can come from anywhere to volunteer for the conference, but the competition is for people from specific states surrounding Texas only.