Speakers announced for 2008's Garden & Florist Expo

September 11, 2008
Written by Landscape Ontario
The Toronto Congress Centre will play host to two different horticulture industry conferences on Monday Oct. 20 as a prelude to Landscape Ontario’s Garden and Florist Expo on Oct. 21-22.

Renowned landscape architect McRae Anderson will make a keynote speech during the Interiorscape Conference and leading industry experts, Anne Obarski and Roy Prevost, will be featured speakers at the 2008 Garden Centre Symposium the day before the 9th annual Garden & Florist Expo begins.

The annual Interiorscape Conference is a full day of education, learning and networking for interior landscape designers, professionals, business owners and suppliers. The conference offers an unparalleled opportunity to learn from some of the industry’s best, including a keynote address from McRae Anderson.

President and principal designer at award-winning company McCaren Designs of St. Paul, Minnesota, McCrae Anderson’s projects include the Cleveland Zoo, Denver Airport and recognition by the ALCA, ASLA and the Interior Plantscape Association. McRae has a long history in the horticultural industry as a graduate of the University of Minnesota, where he studied agricultural economics and marketing. Attendees will hear him speak on 'Raising the Bar of Interiorscape Design' and also on the theme of 'Green Plants for Green Buildings'.

The Garden Centre Symposium will offer insights and tips on key areas of garden centre and nursery retail operations. Attendees will learn ways to attract new customers, improve business management skills and increase profitability. Additionally, it is also a great event to network with professionals in the garden and florist industries.

During the October 20th symposium, Anne Obarski will present on various topics including, ‘Making Your Nursery Business Contagious’ and ‘Retail Nursery Business is Show Business’. Anne is the Executive Director of Merchandise Concepts in St. Louis, Missouri and is the author of several books. As a former college instructor and retail consultant, she is known for the real life experiences and advice she brings to her audiences.

The day’s other keynote speaker, Vancouver-based consultant and strategist Roy Prevost has more than 25 years of experience in marketing, wholesale, retail and manufacturing for the giftware industry. He forecasts consumer trends and his upcoming book ‘Competing with a 700 lb Gorilla’ focuses on the tools and techniques retailers need to thrive and prosper in the big box retail environment. He will elaborate on this subject at the Symposium with his speech, ‘Prosper Alongside Big Box Retail’. His address on ‘Retaining and Motivating Employees’ will be presented at both the Garden Centre Symposium and the Interiorscape Conference.

 Tickets for the Garden Centre Symposium range from $125 for Landscape Ontario members to $190 for non-members. Tickets to the Interiorscape Conference start at $145 for members and top out at $225 for non-members. Admission to the Garden & Florist Expo trade show is included when purchasing tickets to the symposium or conference. Tickets can be purchased online through Landscape Ontario’s web site at: www.gardenexpo.ca

Questions or comments? Email greenhouse@annexweb.com

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