STMA News Online

News You Can Use

October is a very busy month for a large swath of STMA members. On October 1st, online registration for the 2015 Conference opens. The conference will be held in Denver, Colorado Jan. 13-16, 2015. The hard copy brochure should be in your mailbox by the end of this month, and you will also be able to view the online digital version at that time.

October 15 is the deadline to submit for all of STMA's awards, grants and scholarship programs. These include the Field of the Year, Innovative Awards, Founders Awards, SAFE Scholarships, and SAFE Educational grants. Go to for more information and the applications.

Denver 2015

This year the SAFE Board of Trustees is holding their annual event with a little twist. Leave your golf clubs at home because this year the SAFE Foundation presents a "Night of Entertainment" at the 2015 STMA conference in place of its annual golf tournament.

Join in on SAFE's Night of Entertainment on Tues., Jan. 13, starting at 6 p.m.

The Night of Entertainment will include bowling, assorted games, prizes and more! Accompanied by signature cocktails and a custom menu, this will be a night you won't want to miss. Whether you're competitive or not, guests will have free range to form teams or bowl individually. We encourage guests to have some fun with it and form teams based on chapter, state, category or any other combination! There will be prizes for top team and individual bowler.

Also, multiple sponsorship options exist for this unique event. Chapters might consider purchasing a sponsorship package to assist SAFE in its mission and help future sports field managers as they pursue their educational goals. Sponsor opportunities include:

Night of Entertainment Title Sponsorship $4,000
Exclusive naming rights to provided for this inaugural event. Package customizable to company's preferences. Logo placement, signage, press release mentions, lane signage all included.

Lane Sponsorship $350
Signage included at lanes.

Drink Ticket Sponsorship $500
Logo and small amount of information printed on drink tickets

Assorted Games Sponsorship $200
Signage included at assorted gaming areas.

Contact Shant Thomas at or 800-323-3875 for more information or to sign up to be a sponsor.

Each month two speakers presenting at the 2015 National STMA Conference and Exhibition in Denver, Colorado will be featured. Don't miss the educational opportunities offered at the conference!

Bryan G. Hopkins, Ph.D. is a Professor at Brigham Young University. On Tuesday, January 13, he will be presenting "The Nuts and Bolts of Applied Nutrient Management" with Jim Gish and Jessica Buss. This is a hands on case study approach to nutrition that will be basic enough for beginners and yet complex enough to challenge experienced managers. Participants will learn to take soil and plant tissue samples and other field measurements, and then learn how to use the data to build custom fertilizer recommendations and troubleshoot problems. Discussion of pros and cons of a wide variety of fertilizer sources will be discussed.

Attendees will:

  1. Learn how to collect samples and data to assess soil fertility and plant nutrition.
  2. Learn how to troubleshoot problems.
  3. Build custom fertilizer recommendations based on facts, not guesses.
  4. Determine the optimum fertilizer materials to use for each unique situation.


Beth Guertal, Ph.D. is a Professor at Auburn University. On Wednesday, January 14 she will be presenting "Who's Your Mother? Bermudagrass Selections and Cultivars for Sports Fields".

This presentation will cover the origins of the various bermudagrasses currently used for sports pitches around the world. We will cover the methods by which the various grasses were developed and we will discuss the current scientific research which studies the grasses.

Learning Objectives:

  1. Attendees will know about the developmental background of our various bermudagrasses.
  2. The most recent research (as opposed to anecdotes) regarding these grasses will be covered.
  3. The newest available bermudagrasses on the market will be discussed.

The priority when maintaining athletic fields at any level of play is to provide safe, playable fields for athletes. All too often, budgetary limitations get in the way of proper care and maintenance of fields. Click here to learn tips on how you can adjust your maintenance schedule and facility operations to still fit within the budget.

The Student Challenge is presented in partnership with the SAFE Foundation, Founding Partner Hunter Industries, and new sponsor Ewing. Each year students from 2-year and 4-year colleges and universities across the country compete in an exam that challenges knowledge in the sports turf industry. The winning teams receive a cash award, a plaque, and medallions for each team member. The prize money benefits the institution's turf program and creates opportunities for students pursuing a career in sports turf management. The Study Guide for the 2015 STMA Student Collegiate Challenge is now available online! Please be sure to thoroughly review the Study Guide in preparation for the exam. CLICK HERE to access the Study Guide.

The exam has changed times! The 2015 contest will take place Thursday, January 15 from 2-4:30 pm at the Denver Convention Center in Denver, Colorado. Registration for the Student Challenge opens on October 1, so start thinking about your team now! A maximum of four undergraduates can compete on a team and must declare if they are representing a two-year or four-year institution. Competitors receive complimentary conference registration. If you are not a member, you must include your dues payment with registration. All Student Challenge competitors are REQUIRED to register online before December 15. No paper registration forms will be accepted. You can send in a paper form to register for optional events. Please contact Kristen Althouse at with questions about the Student Challenge.

The 2-Minute Tip for Success

Nowadays, people tend to shift career about four times in their lifetime. But our education system hasn't prepared us for all this change! How do you explore your options, develop new skills and take control of your career? Satu Kreula offers her ten top tips.

Turf Rundown

A recent study by Penn State University's Center for Sports Surface Research, entitled '2014 World Cup Shoes – Traction Comparison', has provided valuable information regarding the traction levels of commonly worn soccer cleats on both natural and synthetic turf. Click here for the full report.

International Resources




Student challenge