President's Message Sep/Oct 2019

If you’re reading this message, you did it; you made it through the dog days of summer!

Fall is my favorite time of year; shorter days, cooler nights, but still relatively warm temperatures during the day. Many of the summer conditions that cause stress to our turf have been reduced in this cooler weather and as things wind down we get to spend more time with our friends and colleagues, sharing good times and experiences from the season.  We also have time to plan ahead to the winter season and look forward to the annual WCTA Conference and Trade Show!

This is the time of year we have to switch gears. From dealing with summer stress, to trying to keep up with the optimal growing conditions. This shift is made even tougher due to the fact that many of our staff are returning to school, while others will be victim to seasonal layoffs. There seems to be too many tasks to complete and not enough bodies to get the job done. We may often find ourselves pitching in where we can, or doing multiple things at once to try and keep ahead. Soon we will have frost days and cooler temperatures. The grass will slow its growth as it begins to store carbohydrates for its winter hibernation. I often find myself doing the same thing… well it’s hard not to with NFL football in full swing!  There are more opportunities for beer, pizza and spending more time with your friends, and I for one, definitely enjoy the carb heavy diet in the winters.

Friends and colleagues are often one and the same in our industry and we have been known to share a few stories over a few good brews. Through the summer we are often too busy, but once fall rolls around there is much more opportunity to gather and reconnect. One of my favorite things about our industry is the people. I think it’s what keeps many of us around. We have so much in common with each other and conversations always come easily. The openness to share experiences and help one another through a difficult time are something you don’t find everywhere. There is a noticeable fellowship among turf managers, which is certainly evident when we all get together. We don’t see each other as competition, rather as comrades.

A great opportunity to get everyone together is the annual WCTA Conference and Trade Show.  It’s something I really look forward to each year. Getting everyone together, seeing your old friends, and making some new ones; it’s a great networking opportunity for everyone. Networking is especially helpful in our industry. The more people you get to meet, the more connections you make, the bigger your support network becomes. You never know when you’ll run into a problem that someone else has experienced and dealt with successfully. Or maybe you will be the person with the experience and ability to help someone else. The conference provides a great venue for these exchanges of information as well as the influx of new information and technology. Our industry is constantly changing, and the conference and trade show aims to keep up to date on all the latest. 

Conference planning is well underway, and we think we have a really great program in store for you this year. We hope to see you again in February 2020 at the River Rock Resort in Richmond!