Wagtail Space US 2024

Sprints on Saturday at St. Leonard's Court, 39th & Chestnut St!

Join us virtually via Zoom, or in-person at The University of Pennsylvania in Philadelphia.

Wagtail Space US will comprise talks, training, and a sprint. The event is free, although we invite corporate participants to consider sponsorship.

Want to Present a Talk or Tutorial?

Our call for proposals is now closed! Please check out all our fabulous speakers below.


Here is our schedule for 2024!


9:45: Opening Remarks

10:00-10:30: The State of Wagtail by Tom Dyson

10:45-11:15: Pleasant Publishing Patterns by Michael Trythall

Pages, snippets, site config, hardcoding, integrations, and blocks, oh my! There are so many ways to build and serve up content with Wagail. Simple projects can get by with a few Page types, but what happens when your site needs more structure? How do you help editors keep their sanity as your site grows? This talk looks at best practices for modeling content and design systems in Wagtail and building content management experiences editors love.

11:30-12:00: Accessibility for Complex Components and Interfaces by Kara Gaulrapp

This session delves into the challenges and solutions associated with ensuring accessibility for complex web components and user interfaces. As digital environments become increasingly intricate, ensuring they remain accessible to all users, including those with disabilities, is both a legal imperative and a design challenge.

Key Objectives:

- Understanding Barriers: Identify common accessibility barriers that arise in complex components like dynamic widgets, multi-layer navigation, and data visualizations.
- Best Practices: Learn about the latest best practices and strategies for designing accessible complex components, including ARIA roles, properties, and states.
- Practical Solutions: Discuss real-world solutions and tools that help in evaluating and maintaining accessibility in sophisticated interfaces.
- Interactive Demonstrations: Engage with live demos that illustrate how accessibility tools and coding practices can be applied to complex UI components.

12:00-13:45: Lunch break

14:00 - 14:30: One Thousand and One Wagtail Sites by Vince Salvino

This talk will touch on strategies and challenges we have encountered along our journey of hosting over 1,000 Django/Wagtail sites. Told in the storybook style of "One Thousand and One Nights" (a.k.a. "Arabian Nights") this talk will feature real-world anecdotes about: technical architecture, business challenges, financial challenges, customer support, and security challenges such as dealing with onslaughts of spammers and attack vectors.

14:45 - 15:15: 3D Files with Wagtail by Dawn Wages and Mira Gibson

A fun talk given by our friend Dawn Wages

15:30 - 16:00: Wagtail, Reactivated - Headless Without the Headache by Josh Marantz

Reactivated is a Vite-based server renderer for React that integrates directly with Django's templating system. It lets you grab many of the benefits of server-rendered React without forcing you to write an api layer to fetch data from Wagtail.

16:15 - 16:45: 10 Years of Wagtail Panel Discussion

Wagtail is 10 years old! Tom Dyson, Kalob Taulien, and Dawn Wages will reflect on how Wagtail CMS and the Wagtail community have evolved over time in this discussion moderated by Meagen Voss

16:45 - 17:15: Lightning Talks

Got something you're passionate about? We'll give you five minutes to talk about it! Doesn't even have to be about Wagtail. Slides, tech, and seriousness are totally optional in this free-for-all lighting round. A sign up sheet will be provided in the morning for anyone who's interested in speaking.

17:15 - ? : Happy Hour at New Deck Tavern

Hang out with all your fellow Wagtailers at the New Deck Tavern on 3408 Sansom Street Philadelphia, PA 19104. New Deck is an American-style Irish pub that offers a variety of burgers, sandwiches, salads, and more.


10:00-10:30: LLMs and Wagtail by Jacob Topp-Mugglestone

Discussion of the use of AI, especially Large Language Models, with Wagtail, and in particular the wagtail-ai and wagtail-vector-index packages. We'll go through how each enables very different features and use-cases: editor-facing with wagtail-ai, and user-facing with wagtail-vector-index.

10:45-11:15: PudlStack - Building Wagtail Affinity Group Communities That Offer Bot Helpers by Anthony Garcia

I've set out to use Wagtail as a base CMS to support a few affinity groups of personal interest. I'll demonstrate a proof of concept of using wagtail to offer "bots for adoption" for affinity groups like my personal interest songwriters. Bots can be built with either UiPath or Python and served as content block types in a Streamfield.

11:20-12:00: Auditing Wagtail Content by Will Barton & Chuck Sebian-Lander

After eight years and 10,000 pages, the content stored in a Wagtail site can become unwieldy. What blocks are we even using? Where are they being used? Maybe we've identified a pattern in our content that we want to remove, where do we find ones like it?

At CFPB, we've been going through the process, auditing the content stored in our Wagtail site. We'll talk about doing that audit, tools we've created to help, lessons we've learned from it, and how it may have changed our approach to both the how we think about our content in terms of both schema and admin usability.

12:00-13:45: Lunch break

14:00 - 14:30: What Editors Really Want by Meagen Voss

Python packages and frameworks provide developers with lots of options these days for deploying applications really fast. In this world of tight deadlines and near-limitless customization options, it's really easy for Wagtail developers to unintentionally introduce friction into the workflows of their editors.

In this talk, you'll see examples of poor Wagtail implementation and what you can do to make your editors happier with your Wagtail installation. You'll learn the difference between deploying functional code and deploying code created with user empathy in mind. You'll also learn some approaches to incorporating more empathy into your coding even when you don't feel like you have time to do it.

14:45 - 15:15: Improving the Editor Experience Through Validation by Scott Cranfill

Wagtail leverages Django's powerful model validation system to make it easy to check for things like required fields being filled or URLs being entered in the correct format, but did you know that it's easy to write your own validation logic to make your site more predictable for both you and your editors? This talk will do a survey of a number of common (and less common!) custom validation scenarios that you may want to incorporate into your projects.

15:15 - 15:45: sditail: Extending Wagtail CMS as a Spatial Data Infrastructure by C├ęsar Benjamin

We propose an innovative implementation of a Spatial Data Infrastructure (SDI) using Wagtail CMS as the central platform. The developed SDI enables integrated management, versioning, analysis, and visualization of geospatial data directly within the familiar Wagtail content management environment. Additionally, the project includes the publication of standard APIs and Web Services for data access in accordance with Open Geospatial Consortium (OGC) spatial data standards.

sditail comprises several key components:

Wagtail CMS: Used as the primary content management system, providing a friendly and flexible interface for data administration.
Spatial Database: Implementation of a spatial database (PostgreSQL with PostGIS) for storing and managing geographic data.
Avoiding Geospatial Data Modeling: Utilizing JSONField for attribute data storage to avoid modeling each case individually.
Data Versioning: Integration of a versioning system using Wagtail's Draft system allowing historical tracking of dataset changes, facilitating collaboration and traceability.
Visualization: Integration of visualization library tools (OpenLayers) within Wagtail for spatial queries and interactive map creation.
Data Access APIs: Publication of data through OGC standards.

This innovative integration expands Wagtail's capabilities beyond a conventional CMS, providing users with a unique platform for comprehensive geospatial data management. The primary focus lies in the publication of standard APIs and Web Services for online spatial data, particularly leveraging OGC standards.

15:45 - 16:15: Packages! Packages! Packages! The Panel Discussion

Packages are a great way to extend Wagtail's functionality and add features that aren't necessary for every installation. Maintaining them long-term though can be a challenge though. Jacob Topp-Mugglestone, Will Barton, and Vince Salvino will go over the benefits, the struggles, and the small joys of being a package maintainer in this panel discussion moderated by Tim Allen.

16:15 - 17:00: Lightning Talks

Got something you're passionate about? We'll give you five minutes to talk about it! Doesn't even have to be about Wagtail. Slides, tech, and seriousness are totally optional in this free-for-all lighting round. A sign up sheet will be provided in the morning for anyone who's interested in speaking.

17:00 - ? : Happy Hour at Han Dynasty

Hang out with all your fellow Wagtailers at Han Dynasty on 3711 Market Street, Philadelphia, PA. Han Dynasty is a Chinese-style restaurant that serves stir-fries, soups, noodles, and more. They also offer a gluten-free menu.


Sprints will start at 9 A.M.


Sprints will be held at Wharton Research Data Services in St. Leonard's Court, on the corner of 39th & Chestnut Street, Suite 217.

The entrance is on 39th Street directly across from the Boston Market.

Saint Leonard's Court Map

If you have any issues finding the location, please reach out to us in the #wagtail-space-us-2024 channel in the Wagtail Slack.

Lodging & Travel


Searching in the ZIP Code 19104 will give options in the surrounding neighborhood, typically a ten-to-fifteen minute walk from the venue at 3420 Walnut Street. If you're looking for something in a fancy metropolitan area, Rittenhouse Square is about a 15-minute walk (or a 5-minute bus ride on Route 21, which runs every 6 minutes during rush hour). Search AirBnB near 2000 Walnut Street, Philadelphia, PA.


Kayak aggregates various options at different price points throughout University City.

Homewood Suites by Hilton

The Homewood Suites by Hilton University City, PA hotel is adjacent to the University of Pennsylvania campus. Stroll through the beautiful area and enjoy the 19th-century architecture, exciting restaurants, and an eclectic mix of shops.

From the Airport

Regional trains are available from the airport to 30th Street Station every half hour for $8.00. A taxi ride to University City would be approximately $28.50.

By Train

30th Street Station is Philadelphia's Amtrak rail hub and a five-minute taxi ride from the venue. Trains from Boston, New York, Baltimore, and Washington, DC all arrive at 30th Street Station.

Getting Around Town

Public transportation in Philadelphia is through SEPTA, the Southeastern Pennsylvania Transportation Authority, and all of their buses are accessible. More information about accessibility and SEPTA is available on their website.

Parking is available for an $18 daily rate at this garage. There is free on-street parking available a few blocks from the venue and metered on-street parking right outside, but you'll have to get a new parking ticket every three hours.

Taxis are plentiful in the city, and Uber and Lyft are very active for ride-sharers.


We're very grateful to DEFNA, The Wharton School and Torchbox for their sponsorship. We thank Four Digits, who hosted the original Wagtail Space, for open-sourcing their beautiful site for all future Wagtail Spaces.

Code of Conduct

Everyone at Wagtail Space US must agree with this code of conduct to attend any place (conference, workshop, video streams, Slack, social media, etc.) that is associated with Wagtail Space. Everyone means attendees, speakers, sponsors, Wagtail Space US organizers, volunteers, sketch noters, videographers, photographers, virtual venue staff, etc.

This code of conduct will be enforced strictly; everyone is expected to cooperate so we can have a safe and inclusive event.

Need Help?

If you have any questions about the Code of Conduct or need to report a violation/concern, we will have multiple people you can contact. You can direct message any or all of them privately through the Wagtail CMS Slack (where we discuss the event in the #wagtail-space-us channel) or approach us in person at the event.

You can also contact or approach any of the organizers, and they can contact us so you can get the help you're requesting.

When reporting an incident, please be as specific as possible with your contact info so we can reach you. It also helps to be detailed with as much information as possible, if you have it: names, witnesses, what happened, and any other context that can help.

If you need a virtual escort or any other accommodations to feel safe or comfortable, please let us know so we can provide assistance.

The Quick Version

  • Wagtail Space US is dedicated to providing a harassment-free conference experience for everyone, regardless of gender, sex, identity, expression, orientation, age, ability, physical appearance, body size, race, ethnicity, culture, national origin, immigration status, family status, religion (or lack thereof), education, social class, economic class, or technology choices.
  • We do not tolerate harassment of participants in any form.
  • Sexual language and imagery are not appropriate for any virtual venue, including talks, workshops, parties, Twitter, and other online media.
  • When organizers receive a report, they will review what happened and document the resolution. Depending on the severity of the offense, anyone violating these rules will receive either a warning, expulsion from the event at the discretion of the Wagtail Space US organizers, ban from future events, or legal action (with the consent of the victim). If you receive a warning to stop harassing behavior, you must comply immediately.

The Less Quick Version

Harassment includes offensive verbal comments related to gender, sex, identity, expression, orientation, age, ability, physical appearance, body size, race, ethnicity, culture, national origin, immigration status, family status, religion (or lack thereof), education, social class, economic class, technology choices, sexual images in public spaces, deliberate intimidation, stalking, following, harassing photography or recording, sustained disruption of talks or other events, inappropriate physical contact, and unwelcome sexual attention.

Participants asked to stop any harassing behavior are expected to comply immediately.

Sponsors are also subject to the anti-harassment policy. In particular, sponsors should not use sexualized images, activities, or other material.

If a participant engages in harassing behavior, the Wagtail Space US organizers may take any action they deem appropriate, including warning the offender, expulsion with no refund, or banning from future Wagtail Space events.

Wagtail Space US organizers will be happy to help participants contact security or local law enforcement, provide escorts, or otherwise assist those experiencing harassment to feel safe for the duration of the conference. We value your attendance.

If you are being harassed, notice that someone else is being harassed, or have any other concerns, please contact a Wagtail Space US organizer immediately. Organizers can be identified as they'll be wearing branded clothing and/or badges.

We expect participants to follow these rules at conference and workshop virtual venues and Wagtail Space US-related social events.