Tips for a Successful Great Smoke 2024


TGS 2024 is fast approaching, and we’re ready to get you all down here to sunny Florida and create some awesome memories at the best cigar show of the year. If this is your first TGS and you’re looking to get a few tips, we’ve reached out to some Great Smoke veterans to collect their top advice. Without further ado, let’s hear from these awesome Socialites and figure out how to make your Great Smoke one to remember.

Tips from Chris Margrave:

  • “The parties before and after The Great Smoke are amazing! Make sure you pace yourself so that you can enjoy the full experience.  Don’t miss out on the full 4-5 days of fun they spend half the year planning and putting together!”
  • “Take advantage of the catering at the event! In the two years I’ve gone, it has all been excellent.”
  • “Enjoy the company of your fellow botl/sotl! Y’all are enjoying the absolute best cigar event of the year together!”

Tips from Randy Bush, aka, the ASH KING:

  1. Find The Ash King & get a selfie with a legend!
  2. Relax it’s a lot to take in. You didn’t come to not meet folks and have fun. Put yourself out there!
  3. Thursday night pre party a must.
  4. Friday RMLC Dinner. Get a ticket, you will be glad you did.
  5. Saturday balls out mode.
  6. Saturday night more fun at the mothership
  7. Sunday Brunch is great and leads to goodbyes until next year. Don’t miss it.
  8. Beware of Michelle’s hugs. It will be awkward before it is over.
  9. Do not squat at the mothership for days, because you don’t have the means to get home.
  10. Be extra courteous to the staff. Tip well. It’s amazing how they take care of everyone, amazing!
  11. Pronounce Guy Fieri’s name correctly for goodness sake.
  12. Do not pick on Alan Rubin if he’s there. He gets enough of that.
  13. Hit Tommy Callahan up for your pharmaceuticals.
  14. All of the manufacturers are welcoming. Do not hesitate to approach and meet.
  15. If you’re willing to listen, Steve Saka will talk for as long as you want.

Tips from Don McKnight:

  1. Enjoy the moment and don’t be in a hurry to get to the next booth or event. There is time.
  2. Drink a lot of water
  3. Be ready for all kinds of weather
  4. Don’t act like a 12 year old at a Taylor Swift Concert when you see your favorite cigar maker. Be nice, but don’t try and take up too much of their time. Get the picture and signature and move on. [Editor’s Note: I personally would love to see every Socialite act like a 12-year-old at a Taylor Swift concert for my own amusement!]

 Wrapping Up

I’ll add a few more tips of my own to conclude this shindig!

  1. Smoke a cigar you’ve been saving. Everyone’s got those special occasion cigars that they put away – what better time than now to light up?
  2. Drink water. That’s just a general life tip. We all don’t drink enough water.
  3. Be nice to the staff! The SI family is awesome and always well-behaved (well… 99% well-behaved) during the event, but remember that these guys work their butt off literally all year for this show. It’s a huge event, it’s very tiring, people are working double shifts, coming in early, leaving late – tip your bartender, thank the people who ring you up, and try not to leave a trail of garbage in your wake.

How about you? Any tips you want to give a newcomer to The Great Smoke? Any questions you need answered? Let us know in the comments!

About Joey Jobes

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