Nearly 2,000 attendees, representing more than
400 dealer companies from all 10 provinces, attended the 2012
Canadian Pool & Spa Conference & Expo held in Niagara Falls, Ont.
The Canadian pool and spa industry likes Niagara Falls. After the success of the Pool & Hot Tub Council of Canada's (PHTCC's) 2011 conference and expo-the first time the show was held outside of Toronto in years- once again, nearly 2,000 attendees representing more than 400 dealer companies from all 10 provinces returned to Ontario's top tourist destination to learn about the latest products and services available in the aquatics industry.
"The expo was a repeat of last year's success;' said Brent Win nitoy, the PHTCC's in coming 2012-2013 president. “The exhibitors were pleased with the mood on the show floor and attendees were very attentive, which led to lots of one-on -one time at the booths: 'Nearly 150 companies setup shop at the Scotiabank Convention Centre (SCC) with many taking advantage of the numerous amenities not only the convention centre provided, but also what the city had to offer. Business or pleasure, expo participants enjoyed themselves as there were many ideal locations nearby for meeting and entertaining clients and potential customers, to social nightlife venues and various sight-seeing opportunities.
The conference's tech nical program, w hich started on Nov. 26 included three courses (Certified Pool Operator [CPO], How Water Chemistry Affects the Customer Satisfaction, and Introduction to Hydraulics) and more t han a dozen seminars covering a variety of topics from concrete pool construction and water chemistry to spa support systems and retail store management. According to the PHTCC's executive director, Robert Wood, these events, as has been t radition, drew particularly well since education is a vital com ponent of the convention. "The seminars appeared to be well received;' said Kara Redden of R&R Pool Sales and Installation. "My colleague and I managed to have quite a few takeaways for our own company, which is the goal:'
A new activity was also added to the schedule for2012, which comprised six different rou ndtable discussions (municipal bylaws and inspections, technical issues for builders and service person nel, public pool issues, green pools and spas, public safety awa reness programs, and creati ng more opportunities for profit). Each discussion was led by an assigned moderator, including: Markus Brunner (Forest City Pool & Patio Inc.), Emmett DeAngelis (Precision Pools by Triple A), Roland Guy (Ser vice Pl us Aquatics), Barry Just us (Poolscape Inc.), Josh Randall (Josh's Gas Service),and Rob Pyrz (Aqua-Tech Pools Ltd.). "The 'Hot Topics, Hot Breakfast' roundtable session was also deemed a success;· said Wood. "It provided an excellent opportunity for attendees to network and learn from their peers: Winnitoy agreed. "We were especially pleased by the reaction to t he roundtable discussion and we plan to expa nd this format in the upcoming show:·
The national awards banquet, the social highlight of the year for the Ca nadian pool and spa industry, was conducted in front of a packed audience in the convention cent re's Peller Estates ball room. For the second year in a row, the gala evening-sponsored by Latham Pool Products I nc., Mursatt Chemicals Ltd., Nor theastern Swi m ming Pool Distributors (NSPD) Inc., Sani Ma rc Group, Waterco Ca nada Inc., and BioLab Ca nada I nc.- was sold-out.
Bowser & Blue. l11e highlight of the festivities was the presentation of the PHTCC awa rds. The 2012 recipients of the leadership and exceptional service awa rds were presented to: Terry Sloan (Industry Achievement); Cobra Pools (Dealer of the Year); a nd PoolWerx Inc. (Supplier of the Year).
"It was an honour to again be recognized by our peers, customers,a nd industry as the supplier of the yea r;• said Vic Iovino of Pool Werx. "It's easy to do the right thing for you, your supplier, and you r customer when you are truly interested in mutual success. This awa rd is a testament to ou r commitment to all our business partners, suppliers, employees, and customers·: The Design & Construction Awards, sponsored by Pool & Spa Marketing and Pools, Spas & Patios, saw 37 companies recognized with plaques for thei r exceptional workma nship in 40 different categories. Photos of the gold-award winning projects cann be found on pages 36-42.
Once again, visitor and exhibitor feedback on the show, venue, educational program, and gala evening were extremely positive. "Not surprisingly, the 2012 trade show i n Niagara Falls was a first-class event;' said Leisure Fibreglass Pools' Paul Kennedy."The Pool & Hot Tub Council team keeps outdoing themselves from one year to the next. The new venue is very functional as well as esthetically pleasing, a nd the participating hotels seem to take extra special care of the exhi bi tors and dealers w ho spen d the night:
In fact, many in the i ndustry are happy to hear the 2013 Canadian Pool & Spa Conference & Expo is retu rning to Niagara Falls, Ont., and will be held Dec. 2 to 5. "We learned from last yea r t hat Niaga ra Falls, as a Canadian destination resort, is a natural attraction with lots to see and do i n close proximity, making it a great fit for ou r convention:· said Winnitoy. "The comfortable facilities and excellent service at the Scotiabank Convention Cen t re has us looking forward to returning in 2013:'