Short Course Shows Lots of Heart

August 17, 2010 - 06:14

Business was brisk, the aisles were full and the mood was upbeat last month at OFA Short Course in Columbus, Ohio. According to OFA, more than 9,000 people attended this year’s trade show and educational sessions, where the theme was “The Heart of Horticulture.”

We had a chance to recognize publicly Drew Guffey, the 2010 GPN/Nexus Intern of the Year, at a special reception on Monday night. His proud father, Steve, the owner of Johnston’s Greenhouses in Pennsylvania, along with Drew’s uncle and younger brother and sister, were on hand as Nexus Corp.’s Mike Porter and I recounted Drew’s internship experience at Tagawa Greenhouses in Brighton, Colo. Since we featured Drew in our January issue, he has graduated from Colorado State University and started his professional career working as a production manager at Tagawa’s new facility in Estancia, N.M.

Nothing Trivial About This

I also had an opportunity to participate — along with my fellow greenhouse trade publication editors — in a special media edition of Pile Up the Cash, a “Who Wants to Be a Millionaire”-type trivia contest. Just for showing up, BASF donated $500 to the charitable organization of each editor’s choice. Then, BASF would donate $50 for each trivia question we answered correctly. Somehow, I correctly answered every question that BASF’S Tom Hill asked me, and BASF donated $1,000 to the Center for Applied Horticultural Research in Vista, Calif. Stay tuned to the September issue of GPN for more on CAHR.

I also presented the GPN/OFA State of the Industry on Tuesday morning. Attendees had a chance to hear Dr. Charlie Hall of Texas A&M, Rick Brown of Riverview Flower Farm and Dean Chaloupka of Visions Group discuss a recent survey of nearly 500 growers conducted by GPN and OFA.

Turn to page 38 or check out our Flickr page online at www.flickr.com/lgr-and-gpn/ to see more photos from 2010 OFA Short Course.

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