Tidbits from the Northeast Floral Expo in Cromwell, Connecticut held this past weekend.
As of Saturday afternoon there were just under 700 florists registered for the show, what a great turnout! Can’t wait to hear the final number after the walk ins on Sunday. The volunteers from Connecticut Florists’ Association did a magnificent job pulling it all together, putting on any kind of show is a lot of hard work much less putting on something to host this many people at one time.
Connecticut Florists’ Association is very committed to growing the show and is reaching out to florists beyond their own home state. Florists from neighboring states were invited to participate in a forum and discuss ideas for increasing attendance from their states. Connecticut is reaching out to increase the regionalization of the show and I think this is magnificent. It was stated that at one time 70% in attendance were from Connecticut, 30% from out of state. This year 56% of those registered were from outside Connecticut. I personally saw florists from Maine, New Hampshire, Vermont, Massachusetts, New York, and Pennsylvania. I would say probably other states were there as well, there were so many people it was hard to see all the states. Connecticut Florists’ Association give everyone a banner for their name badge that was color coded by state.
Lots of new product and information available to attendees such as John Henry’s Prom and Homecoming Corsage book; Syndicate Sales with their new two tone glassware and the Color Dex textured paint, a new line of oval vases; Teleflora with their new Dove POS system; FTD showing a power point presentation of their Florist of the Future. J Schwanke and Carol Caggiano both led hands on workshops attended by one of my staff, she learned a lot in each workshop. So much information – something for everyone, design programs, business clinics, hands on workshops, trade fair, book sales.
I came back from the convention with a sense of refreshment and rejuvenation, very glad I went, especially since I will miss the Maine State Florists’ and Growers’ Association spring program this year in order to attend the SAF Retail Council and committee meetings.