Hundreds of distributors, contractors and retailers from around the world came together for education, networking and fun at the industry’s premier water gardening event, Pondemonium 2013, held August 22 through 24 in St. Charles, Ill. This year’s theme was “Get Fit for the Fight” and offered workshops and hands- on training sessions designed to instruct attendees about creating healthy business and personal habits.
The event kicked off with four hands-on training sessions held at Chicago’s Lincoln Park Zoo, which included an advanced build for Certified Aquascape Contractors only. Attendees could choose whether to participate in a fountain, basic pond or pondless waterfall installation.
Friday’s classroom sessions started with keynote presentations from Greg Wittstock, CEO and Founder of Aquascape, Inc., and Friday’s keynote was given by Ed Beaulieu, director of contractor development and field research for Aquascape. In addition, a special presentation on how to build a million-dollar water feature business was given by Steven Shinholser of Premier Ponds in Burtonsville, Md.
“Cup of Coffee” roundtable discussions were once again led by a variety of water feature contractors and retailers on both Friday and Saturday morning. Topics ranged from business to marketing to construction techniques.
Networking events were offered throughout Pondemonium and included a pond tour and a fundraising event at TopGolf in Wood Dale, Ill., to benefit the Aquascape Foundation. The annual Blow-Out Bash dinner brought the event to a close on Saturday night and included Ed’s Beer Garden, poker games and a bags tournament.
#### Recipients of awards presented at Pondemonium 2013 included: ####
* • Businessman of the Year presented to Steve Shinholser of Premier Ponds in Burtonsville, Md.
* • Artist of the Year presented to John Adams of Modern Design Aquascaping in Friendsville, Tenn.
* • Sustainability Award presented to Fred Pape of Aquascape, Inc.