Atlantic City: Philadelphia National Candy Gift & Gourmet Show

Los Angeles: Pacific Oil Conference – POC

POC stands for Pacific Oil Conference, and, rather than focusing on getting the stuff out of the ground, this one was for people who retail gas and other forecourt products.  Full title of the show?  The Fuel Distributors And Convenience Store Industries Western Summit.  What do you do for kicks at a Fuel Distributors And Convenience Store Summit?  Well, aside from listening to keynoters (David Nelson, a professor of economics at Western Washington University presented a session entitled “Energy, The Economy, and The Future”) and the extensive educational sessions… there was a networking dinner, golf, bowling and a Prayer Breakfast.  Petroleum marketers and convenience store retailers from throughout the western United States joined their hands together and besought the Almighty for…. well, a hole in one… two strikes in a row… oh, yeah, and a healthy future for gas retailing please….

Orlando: Surf Expo

Surf’s up, dudes…. And if you’re wondering where you were at, Surf Expo was (and is) “the longest-running and largest boardsports and beach/resort lifestyle tradeshow in the world”.  (Try saying that with your mouth full of Cheetos).  This awesome boardfest drew buyers from specialty stores across the U.S., the Caribbean, Central and South America and around the world. The show featured approximately 2,600 booths of apparel and hardgoods, and a full line-up of special events including fashion shows, annual awards ceremonies and demos.  Buyer and exhibitor turnout exceeded 26,000 attendees including retailers, exhibitors and media.  Okay, surfer girl, let’s karaoke our favorite Beach Boys classic:  “Little surfer, little one, Made my heart come all undone…”

Cologne: Spoga + Gafa

New inspirations and fresh impulses were in the (garden) air again when Cologne, Germany, was once again the “treffpunkt”  (that’s meeting place to us non-German speakers) for the garden industry.  Around 40,000 trade visitors discovered trends, collected ideas and established contacts at what describes itself as the world’s leading horticultural trade fair.  On the tour bus, Claudia Gölz, head of the NED.WORK agency from Düsseldorf, informed visitors about the latest garden trends in Germany, as part of a guided tour through  over 200 magnificent model gardens at local attraction Appeltern.  The group learned about the diversity of garden creation in Europe, the different ways gardens can be planted and furnished, and about the specific materials that can be used.  What’s that scent in the air?  Appeltern blossom?  Or Cologne…?  #spoga+gafa

Boston: National Association of Chain Drug Stores – NACDS Total Store Expo

NACDS is the National Association of Chain Drug Stores, and it’s all about advancing the interests and objectives of the chain community pharmacy industry, fostering its growth and promoting its role as a provider of healthcare services and consumer products. Total Store Expo is their show.  For over 80 years, NACDS has served as a vibrant community of chains and suppliers, making this one of this retail industry sector’s signature events. In the days following the 2014 conference, 97 percent of attendees indicated that they planned to return in 2015.  Were they inspired to come again by keynoters like journalist and author Jane Pauley, or maybe former US Secretary of Defense Leon Panetta?  And while on the subject, what role do drugstore chains play exactly in Keeping America Safe?  Let me count the ways…  #NACDSTSE

Anaheim: California HR Conference – Professionals in Human Resources Association – PIHRA

PIHRA is the California HR Conference.  The acronym stands for the Professionals in Human Resources Association.  As a delegate, you could join more than 2,200 practitioners, providers and presenters at the conference, and maybe earn HR Certification Institute Strategic Business Management, Global, and General certification credits. Concurrent sessions were presented by experienced speakers in Employment Law & Legislation, Business Management & Strategy, Talent Management, International HR, Diversity & Inclusion, Benefits & Compensation, and Personal & Leadership Development, as well as General HR.  Wait, if you’re working in Human Resources, and husbanding all those “human resources”, doesn’t that make you a “human resource” yourself?  In which case… um… how exactly does a resource husband a resource?  Just asking…  #PIHRA

Chicago: American Society for Healthcare Engineering – ASHE

ASHE is the American Society for Healthcare Engineering, a personal membership group of the American Hospital Association. More than 11,000 members count ASHE as a key source of professional development and industry information.  Indeed, more than 3,000 professionals gather on-site to get the vital dope on health care compliance, codes and standards updates, emerging trends, and best practices for efficiency, sustainability, emergency preparedness, and other pressing topics in the field.  There was official recognition for outstanding members for their dedication to improving the health care physical environment.  The Crystal Eagle award, ASHE’s “lifetime achievement” award, was presented to George Mills, director of the Department of Engineering at the Joint Commission. ASHE also recognized members who attained senior (SASHE) and fellow (FASHE) status.   Kind of a FASHEon show….  Next on the catwalk is…