There were about 11,000 people at the 2023 event, which happened Feb. 6-9 in the Orange County Convention Center. Meanwhile, about 6,500 people attended the 2022 event in San Diego, Calif. A total of 6,300 seminar seats were filled, which was up 70% over 2021, and was the highest number since 2008. The trade show covered nearly 250,000 sq.-ft. of exhibit space and hosted nearly 450 exhibitors.
Attendance for the 2023 Golf Course Superintendents Association of America (GCSAA) Conference and Trade Show on Feb. 6-9 in Orlando, Fla., was up 69% compared with the 2022 event in San Diego, Calif., according to event organizers.
Total attendance this year was 11,000 vs. 6,500 people in attendance in 2022. The overall attendance for the 2023 show was comparable with the 11,700 who attended the last pre-pandemic event held in Orlando in 2020.
A total of 6,300 seminar seats were filled, which was up 70% over 2021, and was the highest number since 2008. In addition to education for superintendents, the event also included specialized education for assistant superintendents, equipment managers, students and more.
This is the largest annual event in the turfgrass management industry.
The trade show covered nearly 250,000 sq.-ft. of exhibit space at the Orange County Convention Center and hosted nearly 450 exhibitors.
The week began with the GCSAA Golf Championships presented by Toro. The event was sold out and featured the launch of the Toro Par-3 shoot-out along with formats offering golfers an opportunity to have fun, meet new people, renew old friendships, and play in various flighted competitions. Dylan Foster, assistant superintendent at Verandah Golf Club in Fort Myers, Fla., was the winner of the 2023 GCSAA National Championship
Among the highlights, the conference began Feb. 6 with the launch of the GCSAA Interactive Facility Tours and ended with a Welcome Reception, presented in partnership with Syngenta, at Aquatica Beach with food, fun and comradery. On Feb. 7, there was a continuation of education in the classroom and on the golf course as part of the GCSAA Interactive Facility Learning Tours. The day was capped off with the announcement of a Memorandum of Understanding between GCSAA and The Warrior Alliance.
On Feb. 8, the Sunrise Celebration, presented in partnership with Syngenta, saw John Newton, CGCS Retired, receive GCSAA’s Col. John Morley Award to begin the day. Then, attendees experienced the launch of the Interactive Grass Learning Stage built through a collaboration of the GCBAA, GCSAA, USGA and ASGCA at the trade show.
Feb. 8 also featured the 2023 GCSAA Turf Bowl, presented in partnership with John Deere. Team No. 11 from Penn State University won the 2023 Turf Bowl.
Feb. 9 saw the launch of GCSAA Auction $Bucks, enabling attendees to earn points used to bid on items in a live auction at the GCSAA Send-Off Celebration, presented in partnership with John Deere. The highlight of the Send-Off Celebration was the presentation of the GCSAA Old Tom Morris Award to Johnny Morris, founder of Bass Pro Shops.
The GCSAA Conference and Trade Show is produced by the Golf Course Superintendents Association of America (GCSAA) along with its presenting partners the Golf Course Builders Association of America (GCBAA), United States Golf Association (USGA) and the American Society of Golf Course Architects (ASGCA).
GCSAA will continue to offer conference learning with a two-day virtual event of new education offerings for everyone at the golf facility March 14 and 16. Details and registration information can be found at www.GCSAAConference.com.
The 2024 GCSAA Conference and Trade Show will head to Phoenix, Ariz. Jan. 29-Feb. 1, 2024, at the Phoenix Convention Center.
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