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Previous Conference Education

Welcome to the Conference Education page!  Here you will find presentations and handouts for education sessions occurring at STMA’s 2017, 2018, 2019, 2020, and 2021 Conference and Exhibition.

Conference Education

2021 Virtual Conference Education is now available for viewing on Pheedloop. You must be registered for the conference in order to view the sessions. All 2021 members are able to attend the virtual conference free of charge. To access the 2021 Conference Sessions, click here.

Please email Whitney at wwebber@stma.org if you have any questions. 

Tuesday, Jan. 12

Opening General Session – Town Hall
Hosted by Andrew McNitt, Ph.D. – Penn State University
Panelists – Andy Levy, Arizona Cardinals, George Peters, Penn State University, Marc Moran, CSFM, Atlee High School
Our popular Town Hall comes to conference where industry professionals discuss the current climate of the sports field industry and how we can best prepare to move forward successfully in 2021.

Prioritizing Field Operations with Reduced Labor and Budget
Mike Goatley, Ph.D., Virginia Tech; Tim VanLoo, CSFM, Iowa State University; Jesse Pritchard, CSFM, University of Virginia
This presentation details proven strategies in stretching operating budgets in sports field management from the perspectives of field managers and university faculty. Where are the easiest cuts to be made? What situations warrant spending money to save money? How can supervisors maintain employee job performance and morale during crisis management periods? Attendees will learn how to better engage, motivate, and reward limited labor pools, as well as have a better understanding of the decision making process in developing or adjusting budgets that weigh initial product or equipment costs and the anticipated response and/or its duration over time. Attendees will also gain a better understanding of overall crisis management response.

Establishing Cool-Season Turfgrasses From Seed: What Went Right and Wrong?
Brad Park, Rutgers University
Poor turfgrass cover following seeding is often a result of poor decisions made during the establishment process. Turfgrass selection, soil preparation procedures, and seeding timing, rate, and method, and post-seeding fertilization and weed control are factors that strongly affect establishment success.
This presentation will describe case studies concerning the establishment of cool season turfgrass research trials and sports field in non-research settings. Successful and non-successful case studies will be presented with attention paid to the underlying reasons for success or failure.

The Mathematics of Tank Mixing for Sports Field Management
Nick Christians, Ph.D., Iowa State University; Ben Pease, Iowa State University
The presentation discusses why it is important to calibrate all turfgrass equipment. We will then cover the math involved with correct calibration mathematics. Various example calculations will provide real-life examples of how to use this knowledge at your facility. Calibration of specific turfgrass product application equipment will be demonstrated.

MLB Field Operations Moving into the 2020’s
Bill Deacon, New York Mets – Citi Field
This presentation will focus on where we can expect MLB Field Maintenance to head as we move into the 2020’s. We will discuss growing grass in a high stress, event filled environment, how to combat employee burnout, overwork and how to retain good employees. We will also discuss how to prepare yourself for an MLB job and how to land that job. We will discuss some of the negatives with working in baseball, how we can improve these negatives and how it can cause us to spin our wheels. We will also take a look at the impact that social media can have on MLB Field Maintenance and Turfgrass Managers in general.

 

Wednesday, Jan. 13

What Do All These Numbers Mean? Soil Tests!
Beth Guertal, Ph.D., Auburn University
This talk will cover the basics of soil testing, and how that process is used to make correct fertilizer and lime selections. We will cover extractants, calibrations and how to use the numbers to diagnose issues in your fields. We will also talk about new methods for soil testing, including some for nitrogen.

Cutting Unit Setup and After-Cut Appearance Troubleshooting
Trent Manning, Ansley Golf Club
This presentation will cover cutting unit maintenance, how to identify after cut appearance issues and possible solutions to those issues. I will go in depth on reel to bedknife clearances, how to parallel a cutting unit and proper bedknife attitude depending on the type of cultivar. I will discuss maintenance practices for sharpening reels and bedknives like grinding, front facing and backlapping. We will discuss the different types of quality of cut issues and their effects on the turf. We will talk about how to identify the different types of after cut appearance issues that we all face and possible corrective actions.

Maps Lead the Way: Mapping Pests for Targeted Pest Management
David McCall, Ph.D., Virginia Tech 
Natural playing surfaces are not uniform but are typically managed as if they are. Most pests are distributed sporadically yet entire surfaces are treated equally with pesticides. However, there are simple and complex strategies that allow turfgrass professionals to target applications. This presentation will provide an overview of tools available to sports field managers that allow them to map various pest outbreaks for precision turfgrass management, reducing both environmental impact and economic inputs.

Communicating in Your Organization – Advocating Your Needs to Higher-Level Management
James Bergdoll, CSFM, City of Chattanooga Public Works; Jody Gill, CSFM, Blue Valley School District; Josh Koss, CSFM, San Diego State University; Brad Thedens, CSFM, City of Sioux Falls
The field of sports field management has changed significantly over the past thirty years with new technologies, an increase in participation, and changes in public expectations. In 2020, we have experienced a whole new type of challenge to our daily lives – how will this impact our jobs in the coming years? With the dramatic loss in revenues SFM’s will be forced to make cuts – how do we do this? This panel will discuss tactics for effective communication to higher-level management regarding your needs for budget items and staffing solutions. This is a round-table discussion with leaders from a broad cross-section of the membership.

Keynote Address – Dare to Matter: How Sports Field Professionals Rise to Significance
Pete Smith, SmithImpact
2020 has forced us, willingly or not, to become adaptable, stay hopeful, and remain diligent in fulfilling our commitments. This year has made some question their desires, reevaluate their motivators, and become more resourceful than ever. Those who have been successful have done so because they’ve been able to answer one simple question: What’s the Point?

Society claims that success and happiness should be our most desired end goals. Yet even prior to the COVID quarantine, people were recognizing higher levels of success but felt more isolated, disconnected, and unfulfilled than even before. During the quarantine, people have re-evaluated what they’ve always known deep down: that what they truly desire is to know with certainty is that who they are and what they do matters.

A common question in the mind of every person is this: Where do I go from here? This keynote answers that question.

Success is good. Significance is best. It’s time for you to Matter More.

Surviving a stroke at an early age, and after years of research, interviews, trainings, and observation, Pete Smith reveals the Significance framework outlined in his best-selling book, Dare to Matter. This framework reveals the six major pillars of significance and how they can be incorporated into our daily lives. You don’t need to survive a stroke to learn how to live a significant life. You just get the benefit of gaining the insight from someone who has.

At the conclusion of this presentation, the attendees will:
Increase ownership, accountability, and responsibility of self and others
Implement a behavioral model that builds trust, impacts hiring, and strengthens relationships
Identify why “guts and grind” are keys to success in calm and chaos

 

Tuesday, Jan. 19

2-3 pm EST: Fraise Mowing Effects, Uses, and Recovery – Ray McCauley, Ph.D., North Carolina State University
Fraise mowing is an aggressive cultural practice that can potentially remove all thatch from a sports field. However, fraise mowing often has a negative stigma associated with it. This presentation will remove that stigma and acquaint sports field managers with fraise mowing’s uses, effects, and recovery practices. The various uses of fraise mowing will be presented including thatch control and its use as a spring transition-aid. Fraise mowing’s effect on field playability and soil physical properties will be presented. Practices to hasten bermudagrass recovery following fraise mowing will also be presented.

3:15-4:15 pm EST: Self Care…Can Improve Leadership, Mentorship, and Relationships – Tim VanLoo, CSFM, Iowa State University; Amber VanLoo, Bella Homes
Creating a healthy lifestyle can lead to more benefits then running a marathon or having a low body mass index number. What we eat, how we exercise, and how we purposefully relieve stress is all tied together in how we are as parents, spouses, employees, leaders and how we interact with those around us. Taking small steps and creating new habits to become your healthiest you is easier than you think. Our hope is to give practical advice and make a case that you can have a fuller life then you currently are living. Being happy begins with understanding your body and what you do to it can dictate so many different outcomes.

 

Tuesday, Jan. 26

2-3 pm EST: Irrigation: Grass Health, Surface Quality, and Sustainability – Bryan Hopkins, Ph.D., Brigham Young University; Neil Hansen, Ph.D., Brigham Young University; Colin Campbell, Ph.D., Meter Group
The session will be an overview of irrigation principles and management with an in-depth discussion of sophisticated, cutting-edge technologies available to better manage turfgrass for improved health to provide functional surfaces while conserving water and other inputs.

3:15-4:15 pm EST: Let’s Talk About Our Mental Health: Managing Stress in Difficult Times – Lisa Goatley, LPC – The Cascade Group
2020 brought unprecedented challenges and stressors: role conflict (working from home while educating children and providing full-time childcare); anxiety around health risks from the virus, financial insecurity, stressors around limited budgets, and more. We’ll talk about the impact on our mental health and identify strategies to help us fight “quarantine fatigue.”

 

Tuesday, Feb. 2

2-3 pm EST: Managing High Traffic Fields – Pamela Sherratt, Ohio State University; John Sorochan, Ph.D., University of Tennessee
This presentation will look at ways sports field managers can maintain turfgrass prior to and during periods of heavy use using sound agronomic practices, new technologies and the most efficient turfgrass care products.

3:15-4:15 EST: I Speak Agronomy, My Coach Speaks Athletics – What Now? – Marc Moran, CSFM, Atlee High School; John Corbin, Atlee High School
Learn how to work successfully with coaches to help understand their perspective on surface expectations and effectively communicate agronomic principles that can lead to a better sports field.

 

Tuesday, Feb. 9

2-3 pm EST: Sustainable Sand-Based Turfgrass; 11 Seasons at Target Field – Larry DiVito, Minnesota Twins
Maintaining a professional sand-based turfgrass system for a decade or more requires a progressive outlook and consistent annual maintenance practices. This discussion will consider sand selection, management of organic matter, cultural practices, nutrient inputs and seed selection with a look at varietal segregation of Kentucky Bluegrass.

3:15-4:15 pm EST: It’s Only Fair if it’s Hit Between First and Third – Jeffrey Fowler, Penn State University Extension
This presentation will help empower you to overcome your biggest obstacles on your field and in your life by assisting in strengthening personal leadership and fortitude.

 

Tuesday, Feb. 16

2-3 pm EST: How to Find and be a Part of Successful Internships – Adam Thoms, Ph.D., Iowa State University; Steve Lord, CSFM, Cincinnati Reds; Weston Appelfeller, CSFM, Austin FC
This panel of industry leaders will discuss what makes a successful internship program as well as provide advice to students to help them find and select an internship that will assist them in reaching their professional aspirations.

3:15-4:15 pm EST: Where is the Future of our Industry? – Drew Miller, Brentsville Turfgrass Management Program; Dan Sandor, Ph.D., Virginia Tech 
Our presentation will address the shortage of skilled labor workers entering the sports field industry and identify solutions to these challenges. We will discuss and share experiential and educational strategies for the engagement, recruitment, and retention of young people as future professionals of the sports field industry.

 

Tuesday, Feb. 23

2-3 pm EST: Bluemuda for Beginners – Gregg Munshaw, Ph.D., MountainView Seeds; Brian Winka, CSFM, Advanced Turf Solutions
Growing grass on athletic fields in the transition zone is extremely difficult. There is no single grass that will thrive at all times of the year. Cool-season grasses struggle during the summer and warm-season grasses are susceptible to winter kill almost every year. Bluemuda is a two-grass concept that gives sports field managers the best of both worlds—a cool-season grass that thrives during the spring and fall, and a warm-season grass that performs well in the warmer times of the year. This presentation will describe the history of Bluemuda, how it works, the major strengths and weaknesses of this concept, and how to implement it on fields across the transition zone.

3:15-4:15 pm EST: 2021 Weed Management Update – Jim Brosnan, Ph.D., University of Tennessee; Gerald Henry, Ph.D., University of Georgia
Weeds are continually an issue or those managing sports fields at all levels of play. This presentation will provide an update on strategies for controlling key weeds of warm and cool-season turfgrass sports fields including crabgrass, goosegrass, sedges, and Poa annua. Attendees will learn the strengths and weaknesses of various herbicides to best understand how to incorporate them into an integrated pest management program.

 

Tuesday, Mar. 2

2-3 pm EST: Field Testing Synthetic Fields: The Basics and Beyond – Kyley Dickson, Ph.D., University of Tennessee; John Sorochan, Ph.D., University of Tennessee
This talk will cover the how the basics of testing of synthetic fields will improve athletic field safety and performance. Additionally, the latest advancement in testing and how they could improve fields will be discussed.

3:15-4:15 pm EST: Introducing STMA’s “Best Practices” Document and Promoting Environmental Certification – Zachary Holm, CSFM, New York Red Bulls; Victoria Wallace, University of Connecticut
Sports field managers are dedicated to providing safe, uniform playing surfaces of the athletic fields and recreational areas for which they are responsible. Pressure from introduced environmental legislation has prompted STMA to develop best management practices (BMP’s) that support sports field management practices. This presentation will introduce the Best Practices document and discuss how this document supports STMA’s Environmental Certification.

To purchase the recorded 2020 conference education sessions, please visit our online library.

Mon., Jan. 13
1:15 – 5 pm

Educational Demonstrations at FITTEAM Ballpark of the Palm Beaches
Get offsite and outside with educational demonstrations at Ballpark of the Palm Beaches. Pre-conference education will offer attendees the opportunity to experience various sports turf management practices in action. Attendees will rotate through five stations where they can interact with their peers and learn how to improve field operations.

Tue., Jan. 14
8-9:30 am

Opening General Session – Talkin’ Natural Grass Talk Show
Hosted by Jeffrey Fowler – Penn State Extension
Kick off the STMA Conference with an interactive discussion where our host will interview experts from across the nation. Structured like a late-night talk show, pertinent issues such as herbicide bans, pesticide legislation and new technology will be discussed.

Pesticide Regulation and Policy and Your Role – Laurie Flanagan

Understanding the Glyphosate Issue and Addressing Public Concerns – Dr. Chris Marble

Using Drone Technology for Turfgrass Management– Dr. Dale Bremer

9:45-10:45 am

Overcoming Challenges in Your CareerPreview this session
Speaker: Abby McNeal, CSFM, CPRP – Denver Parks and Recreation
This presentation will discuss ways to tackle the challenges sports field managers face throughout their career as they become the expert at their field/facility. Discussion will include inequities that are experienced at all levels of the industry and ways to manage these with the least impact to your career path.

Growing Bermuda in the NorthPreview this session
Speaker: Kevin Mercer, CSFM, CGM, LICM – Denison University
Barclay Thompsen varsity soccer field at Denison University was renovated in 2017 and became the first collegiate bermudagrass field in Ohio. Come listen to the challenges and successes from our 2017 grow in and how we manage the seasonal inputs for the warm season grass in the colder parts of the US.

Topdressing Sports Fields: What’s Right for Your Facility?
Speaker: James Murphy, Ph.D. – Rutgers University
This presentation will assist in determining whether topdressing is economically feasible and how to approach the logistical and agronomic issues needed to design a sound program. Delivery, storage and application of large volumes of topdressing material, understanding the agronomic reasoning behind material selection, and the timing, frequency and material-quantities applied will be discussed.

Being Positive About Increased Field Usage
Speaker: Zack Holm, CSFM – New York Red Bulls
In today’s world our fields continue to see more usage with little to no input from the turfgrass manager. This session will help attendees understand how to have difficult conversations about field usage, be better prepared for event/extra usage planning and generate ideas for low impact events that can help them and their organization.

Athletic Field Soils and How to Manage Them
Speaker: Barry Stewart Ph.D. – Mississippi State University
Soil properties are not always well understood by many athletic field managers. Soil properties directly determine grass properties and playing surface properties that affect player performance and player safety. This presentation will present a review of basic aspects of soils. Soil physical, chemical and health properties will be highlighted.

Back to Basics: Troubleshooting Your Irrigation System’s Electronics and Hydraulics
Speaker: Brad Jakubowski – Penn State University
Attendees will interactively learn the fundamentals of troubleshooting an irrigation system. Attendees will use multimeters to identify electrical problems with controllers, solenoids, common wires, and valve control wires. Attendees will also learn step by step methods to troubleshooting hydraulic problems in irrigation lines, valves and sprinklers.

11 am – 12 pm

So, What is the Deal with Calcium?Preview this session
Speaker: Nick Christians, Ph.D. – Iowa State University
The session will include some basics of soil science as it relates to calcium and its use on turfgrass. It will also include a discussion of recent research on the topic.

Integrating Assessments into a Municipal or School Grounds Management Program
Speaker: Victoria Wallace – University of Connecticut
Changes in environmental legislation have caused grounds managers in CT to rethink how they manage facilities. This presentation will discuss how the need for assessments of municipal and school grounds and landscapes have evolved in CT, integration of assessments into an IPM plan, and how their use can support management protocol and school grounds purchasing decisions.

Lessons Learned in 35 Years in Turf
Speaker: Dale Getz, CSFM – Retired
This presentation will follow the career of Dale Getz and the important agronomic and life lessons learned during 35 years in the turfgrass industry. The objective of the presentation is to show the various paths a career can take and to use lessons learned in the most productive way.

Recent Traffic Stress Tolerance Research at Rutgers University
Speaker: Brad Park – Rutgers University
The Rutgers Center for Turfgrass Science continues to assess the wear and traffic tolerance of existing tall fescue and Kentucky bluegrass cultivars and new experimental selections. The presenter will describe research results generated from wear and traffic stress trials and the practical implications of this research relative to the challenges faced by sports field managers.
Article – Response of Kentucky Bluegrass to Traffic in Autumn
Article – Tall Fescue and Kentucky Bluegrass Mixture Research
Article – Trafficked and Non-Trafficked Tall Fescue Research

Dotmocracy
Moderated by Jeremy Tredway
This session will brainstorm a variety of topics from industry problems to hot topics. Each topic will be taped to the wall and attendees will vote on the topics they wish to discuss during the session by putting a colored dot sticker on that topic. The highest rated topics will be addressed.

More Pop per Drop: Smart Irrigation
Speaker: Bryan Hopkins, Ph.D. – Brigham Young University
How do we get more of a “pop” of green per drop of water? Water shortages are increasing in frequency and severity. Water and root zone oxygen management innovations will be discussed using case studies and hands-on demos.

2-3:15 pm

Getting the Most Out of Your Natural Grass Fields
Speaker: Ryan Bjorn – Gillette Stadium
This presentation will cover three main keys that assist in providing high-quality surfaces while withstanding ever-increasing traffic demands. While looking at cultural practices, plant health and traffic management, we will discuss different types of aeration, using nitrogen in moderation and finally techniques to help manage the traffic on fields.

Breaking the Barrier: Communicating with Coaches and Administration
Speakers: Marc Moran, CSFM – Atlee High School
This presentation will focus on communication with coaches as well as administration to develop a working plan that facilitates reduction of wear in high wear areas, improved player and team performance and a stronger connection with the coach and the sports field manager. This will be explained from a sports field managers perspective as well as that of a coach.

John Mascaro’s Photo Quiz Comes Alive
Speaker: John Mascaro – Turf-Tec International
John Mascaro’s Photo Quiz article has appeared monthly in SportsTurf Magazine since 2006. The live version of the Photo Quiz is an interactive presentation with questions on what caused a turfgrass problem and answers that tell what the problem was and how it was solved. The Photo Quiz is a favorite feature in the magazine, and the live version focuses on “the rest of the story”.

Professional Baseball Field Renovation
Speaker: Wes Ganobcik – Columbus Clippers
This presentation will describe the design and construction process of a professional baseball field renovation from the perspective of the groundskeeper. It will describe areas of focus during the design and construction stages of a renovation project, the most important details of this specific renovation, as well as how to justify costs as defined by a cost/benefit analysis of different aspects of the project.

Utilizing a Diagnostic Service to Dial in Sports Turfgrass Disease Management Programs
Speaker: Philip Harmon, Ph.D. – University of Florida
We will review turfgrass disease problems and the resources that managers have to diagnose problems. We will review tips to getting the most out of a diagnostic sample and how to interpret the results. We will also review some of the most common warm season turfgrass diseases and management strategies, including fungicide options.

Synthetic Turf Maintenance: Sports Turf Managers Needed
Speakers: Brian Hill – Brigham Young University – Grounds Department; Michael Wear – Perfect Pitch Turf Solutions
An in depth look at the daily, weekly, monthly and annual maintenance required to properly maintain synthetic turf fields. Including a discussion of the tools, methods and reasons behind the maintenance procedures.

3:30-5 pm

So You’re Thinking About a Career Move… (Repeated Thurs., Jan. 16, 1:30 – 3 pm)
Speakers: Marcus Dean, CSFM – Advanced Turf Solutions; Jeff Salmond, CSFM – United Turf and Track; Brian Winka, CSFM – Advanced Turf Solutions
Three CSFMs give a presentation based off their experiences of working in various STMA membership categories, then transitioning to the commercial side of the industry. The presentation is designed to answer questions for those who may be thinking about a career move but are not sure what they can expect.

Get with the Program: Developing Your Own Weed Control Strategy
Speakers: Jim Brosnan, Ph.D. – University of Tennessee; Gerald Henry, Ph.D. – University of Georgia
An effective weed control program allows field managers to maintain weed-free turfgrass (or as closely as possible) of optimal quality from January-December. Effective programs use different herbicide technologies varying in mode of action and implement effective cultural management practices. This session will teach attendees how to build effective weed control programs for both the northern and southern United States.

Work/Life Balance
Speakers: Lisa Goatley, M.S., L.P.C. – The Cascade Group; Mike Goatley, Jr., Ph.D. – Virginia Tech
Careers in the sports field industry present challenges in maintaining an appropriate balance between work and family life. Jobs are prone to long, unpredictable hours under stressful mental and physical conditions which can cause family relationships to suffer. This presentation will detail skills and strategies that one can implement to achieve healthy relationships both at home and with work.

Improved Cool-Season Grasses Perform Well and Require Fewer Inputs
Speakers: Cale Bigelow, Ph.D. – Purdue Turf Science Program; Gregg Munshaw, Ph.D. – University of Kentucky
This presentation will highlight new cool-season turfgrasses that have been bred specifically for aesthetics and reduced inputs and will focus on how to select and choose these improved cultivars to use less fertilizer, chemicals, and water.

Does Your Athletic Field Pass the Test? Field Testing Overview
Speakers: Kyley Dickson, Ph.D. and John Sorochan, Ph.D. – University of Tennessee
The presentation will cover the importance of testing natural and synthetic athletic fields and what data these different tests provide. Attendees will also learn how to use this information to improve athletic field performance, playability, and safety as well as effective ways to communicate the information collected to administrators, coaches, athletes, parents, city council members, etc.

Turfgrasses Do Not Eat Cookies!
Speaker: Haibo Liu, Ph.D. – Clemson University
This seminar will provide thorough reviews of turfgrass soil fertility, nutrition, environmental soil chemical concepts, updates of new trends, and challenges for sports field managers. The audience will gain hands-on experience to deal with challenging soil and chemical subjects with improvements for future management practices.

Wed., Jan. 15
8-9:15 am

Research and Real-World Review of Natural & Synthetic Hybrid Turf Systems
Speaker: Pamela Sherratt – The Ohio State University
Hybrid turf systems comprised of natural and synthetic turf, combined to give the end user a stable and high quality playing surface. This presentation will include a summary of research findings to date and look at how these systems are installed and maintained.

Fertility Fact, Myth and Legend – Sports Turf Edition
Speaker: Beth Guertal, Ph.D. – Auburn University
We’ve all heard them: ‘apply potassium for traffic stress’, ‘no late season N – it causes winterkill’, and, ‘adding gypsum alleviates traffic stress’. But is any of this true, or is it as mythical as unicorns? Come join in for a discussion of the facts, myths and legends that surround fertilization and soil management, and see which are supported by research.

Understanding, Assessing, and Managing Shade Stress Problems in Stadiums
Speaker: John Sorochan, Ph.D. – University of Tennessee
This seminar will teach you to accurately diagnose shade stress on turfgrass and help you develop management practices to successfully manage turfgrass under shade conditions.

Media Training 101: Enhance Your Brand
Speakers: Glenn Gray and Colin McDonald – Buffalo Agency
Sports field managers need to be able to communicate their story in a compelling, authentic tone and engage with the media to promote the industry’s vital work. Come learn tips, tricks and techniques on how to efficiently become a “story seller” and be considered a thought leader in your community. With the proper tools and training, you’ll communicate your ideas coherently and effectively to any audience.

Chemical (Glyphosate, Fertilizer, etc.) Exposure: Health Concern? – Preview this education session
Speaker: Bryan Hopkins, Ph.D. – Brigham Young University
Recent legal actions have resulted in alarming concerns regarding chemical use. Pesticides and fertilizers (most notably glyphosate or Roundup®) are being scrutinized by the public, insurance companies, etc. What are the real facts? What precautions are needed? What resources are available to help alleviate founded and unfounded concerns?

Do I Pull the Tarp? Having the Tools and a Plan for Making Game-Time Weather Decisions
Speakers: Brad Jakubowski – Penn State University; Matt Neri – State College Spikes Baseball
Having reliable weather-based knowledge and developing lines of communication needed to make the most dependable game-time decisions possible is critical. The seminar will focus on what weather information is most effective for making game-time decisions and how to develop well-implemented plans and effective lines of communication to minimize unplayable field conditions.

9:30-10:45 am

Revisit / Develop Your Elevator SpeechPreview this session
Speaker: John Fech – University of Nebraska-Lincoln
Being able to simply and succinctly tell someone you just met about what you do for a living is an excellent way to get the word out that there are people in town who truly value community resources and whose job it is to ensure they are properly cared for. A quality elevator speech serves the sports field manager well when meeting vendors, event coordinators and potential future employers.

Tracking Every Drop: Irrigation Audits and Troubleshooting for Success
Speakers: Charles Fontanier, Ph.D. – Oklahoma State University; Chrissie Segars, Ph.D. – Texas A&M AgriLife Extension
This presentation will describe the process of performing irrigation audits and troubleshooting your system for efficient watering practices. Speakers will go over step-by-step how to perform an audit, how to perform key calculations, and how to interpret your results to fine tune your system.

Improving High School Sports Fields: Educating & Connecting with Coaches
Speakers: Brandon Hardin and Michael Richard – Mississippi State University
Our newest Extension program: Sports Turf Management Coaches’ Clinic was established to educate high school coaches on field maintenance practices that provide safe playing surfaces for student athletes. We will also discuss how a consultant/company can build a relationship with a school to provide key services, all while growing their business.

Improving Biological Control of Turfgrass Pests in the Wake of Public Opinion
Speakers: John Inguagiato, Ph.D. – University of Connecticut; Joseph Roberts, Ph.D. – University of Maryland
Fertilizer and pesticide use in turfgrass has become a public concern resulting in state and local laws mandating the use of these products. With a growing public concern for both human and environmental health associated with turfgrass management, there is a growing need for alternative management strategies. Turfgrass researchers are developing new research in this area, particularly with how it relates to turfgrass microbiology.

Avoiding Pitfalls with Synthetic Turf Specifications and Project Management
Speakers: Dave Anderson PE – DA Hogan & Associates Inc.; Andrew McNitt, Ph.D. – Penn State University
Installing a new synthetic turf field? This presentation will discuss important aspects of the technical specifications and the project management approach that will help avoid pitfalls that can occur with the procurement and construction of synthetic turf field projects.

Cost of Ownership, From Turf to Dirt (Repeated Thurs., Jan. 16, 1:30 – 3 pm)
Speaker: Luke Yoder – DuraEdge Products, Inc.
There are many options when deciding what playing surface makes the most sense for your facility. We will discuss how to avoid buyer’s remorse while preparing to implement best practices moving forward for the long haul. We will discuss all aspects that help determine what the best long-term solution is for your field or complex.

11 am – 12 pm

Keynote – RMLCS Giving Back to The Community

Speaker: Rodney Smith, Jr. – Raising Men Lawn Care Service

This presentation is about Raising Men Lawn Care Service and how one simple act of kindness started it all. Using lawn care, youth are inspired to get out and make a difference in their community one lawn at a time through our 50-yard challenge.

Thurs., Jan. 16
8-10 am

Informed Decision-Making Leads to Successful Sports Field Management
Speakers: Mike Goatley, Jr., Ph.D. – Virginia Tech; Jeffrey Krans, Ph.D. – Mississippi State University; Jim Puhalla – Retired
The authors of “Sports Fields: Design, Construction, and Maintenance” apply over 100 years of their combined experiences in field designs, consultation, and university teaching/research in presentations emphasizing the points they feel are most critical to the success of a sports field and a sports field manager.

Bermudagrass: All the Latest on Cultivar Performance and Management
Speakers: Cale Bigelow, Ph.D. – Purdue Turf Science Program; Gregg Munshaw, Ph.D. – University of Kentucky; Barry Stewart Ph.D. – Mississippi State University
Attend this seminar to discover how to make the most informed decisions and maximize operational resources related to bermudagrass management. Although bermudagrass has many strengths, it can also come with major limitations. Explore and learn the effects of various management inputs like nutritional programs, mowing, cultivation, and plant growth regulators.

Work Life Balance: How to Spend Less Time at Work
Speakers: Wes Ganobcik – Columbus Clippers and Christo Wallace – Cincinnati Reds
Turfgrass Management is a career path in which certain months require you to live at your facility more than your own home. Several approaches will be discussed which should help improve people’s work/life balance, reduce the amount of time they spend at work, and create an overall more pleasant work environment. This will include staffing, scheduling, and field maintenance techniques.

Baseball Construction – The Science Behind the Builders
Speakers: Steve Bush, CFB, CSFM – Bush Sports Turf; Eric Holland – Precision Turf, LLC; Nolan Thomas – Nolan Thomas and Company, Inc.
The presentation will discuss the science and technology used in the design and construction of baseball fields. It will highlight recent projects and processes, how technology has changed building and maintaining baseball fields, and how to maximize your time with planning and efficiency.

1:30-3 pm

Welcome to Our World
Speaker: Nicole Sherry – Baltimore Orioles
In this Q & A/Roundtable discussion, Nicole will provide insight on her past experiences as a major and minor league head groundskeeper. The presentation will cover how she got started in professional baseball groundskeeping, the toughest and most rewarding situations she has encountered, as well as key pieces of advice she has for those entering or trying to move up in the profession.

So You’re Thinking About a Career Move…(Repeated from Tues., Jan. 14, 3:30 – 5 pm)
Speakers: Marcus Dean, CSFM – Advanced Turf Solutions; Jeff Salmond, CSFM – United Turf and Track; Brian Winka, CSFM – Advanced Turf Solutions
Three CSFMs give a presentation based off their experiences of working in various STMA membership categories that have transitioned to the commercial side of the industry. The presentation is designed to answer questions for those who may be thinking about a career move but are not sure what they can expect.

Cost of Ownership, From Turf to Dirt(Repeated from Wed., Jan. 15, 9:30 – 10:45 am)
Speaker: Luke Yoder – DuraEdge Products, Inc.
There are many options when deciding what playing surface makes the most sense for your facility. We will discuss how to avoid buyer’s remorse while preparing to implement best practices moving forward for the long haul. We will discuss all aspects that help determine what the best long-term solution is for your field or complex.

 

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Tues., Jan. 22
1:15 – 5 pm

Educational Demonstrations at Tempe Diablo Stadium Complex
Speakers: Dr. David Kopec and Kai Umeda – The University of Arizona
Get offsite and outside with educational demonstrations at the Tempe Diablo Stadium Complex. New for 2019, pre-conference education will offer attendees the opportunity to experience various sports turf management practices in action. Attendees will rotate through five stations where they can interact with their peers and learn how to improve field operations. Stations will include sprayer calibration, sprayer nozzle selection, using instruments to measure soil conditions, field painting, and infield maintenance.

Wed., Jan. 23
8 – 9:30 am – Opening General Session
Opening General Session – Sports Turf Talk Show
Hosted by Thomas Nikolai, Ph.D. – Michigan State University, Brandon Horvath, Ph.D. – University of Tennessee and John Sorochan, Ph.D. – University of Tennessee
Kick off the STMA Conference with an interactive discussion where our hosts will interview sports turf managers from across the nation. Structured like a late-night talk show, turfgrass experts will sit down and share how they achieve customer satisfaction while still providing safe, high performance athletic surfaces.

9:45 – 10:45 am

Carbon Fertilization: Snake Oil or the Next Big Thing?Preview this education session
Speaker: Bryan Hopkins, Ph.D. – Brigham Young University

Tackling Traffic: Reducing Traffic on Multi-Use FieldsPreview this education session
Speaker: Marc Moran, CSFM – Atlee High School

Synthetic Turf = “Zero Maintenance??”Preview this education session
Speaker: Jeremy Tredway – Indiana University (Bloomington)

Measure Twice, Apply Once: Practical Reductions in Pesticides and Fertilizers
Speaker: Ryan DeMay – Columbus Recreation and Parks Department

Getting a Seat at the Table
Speaker: Jim Speelman, CSFM – Hope College

Budgeting for Your Facility
Speaker: Rebecca Auchter, CSFM – Franklin Park Boro
Ultimately, a sports turf or grounds management program must be funded to succeed. This presentation focuses on the 3 primary categories of budgeting: The Turf Program, Equipment and Personnel. Detailed examples will show sports turf managers how to justify both operational and capital budgets.

11 am – 12 pm

Agronomic Assessment for Sports Fields: Future Implications for Risk Assessment
Speaker: Kristie Walker, Ph.D. – University of Minnesota Crookston
The most difficult turfgrass areas to manage are sports fields due to traffic they receive by players. Sports played on turfgrass can result in injury to players due to diminished field conditions. We will explore the agronomic properties that should be included in field maintenance assessments to reduce player injuries.

Don’t Say the “M” Word: Math
Speaker: Samuel Doak – Virginia Tech
Worksheet

Irrigation Renovation and Troubleshooting Strategies
Speaker: Ashley Wilkinson – Horry-Georgetown Technical College

Healthy Soil, Healthy Turf – Preview this education session
Speaker: Gregg Munshaw, Ph.D. – University of Kentucky

New Trends and Technology in Sports Turf
Speakers: Representatives from STMA Commercial Companies
After a two-year hiatus, this popular session is back! Ten of STMA’s commercial companies have been selected to give a five-minute presentation to introduce and explain the benefits of a new or improved product or service currently available to sports turf managers.

Synthetic Athletic Fields Through the Seasons
Speaker: Jason DeMink, CSFM – University of Michigan Athletics

2 – 3:15 pm

Advanced Weed Control for Athletic Field Turf
Speakers: Jim Brosnan, Ph.D. – University of Tennessee and Gerald Henry, Ph.D. – University of Georgia

Practitioners Guide to Managing Infield Skin Surfaces
Speaker: Joseph Potrikus, CSFM – Greener World Athletic Turf Services

Smart Irrigation- Navigating the Market for your Facility
Speaker: Ben Polimer – Town of Weston

Positive Coaching for Sports Turf Managers, Part 2 (Self-Care)
Speaker: Josh McPherson, CSFM – University of Missouri

Using Drones in Your Sports Field Management Program
Speakers: Tanner Delvalle – Penn State University and Caleb Clements – Blue Valley School District USD 229
This presentation will outline the basics of obtaining a remote pilot license, guidelines for flying legally, equipment available and the types of cameras used. The presentation will also outline a strategy for “selling” the idea to administration or owners on the value and potential cost-saving information that can be gathered from small unmanned aircraft systems (sUAS).

New Technologies in Sports Field Sod Production, Installation and Maintenance
Speaker: Ross Kurcab, CSFM – Championship Sports Turf Systems

COTS
Chapter leaders will hear real-world presentations from five chapters about programs that worked and didn’t work and then have a full audience Q&A on burning questions.

3:30 – 5 pm

Plant and Soil Interactions for Athletic Fields – Preview this education session
Speakers: Nick Christians, Ph.D. and Adam Thoms, Ph.D. – Iowa State University
Part 1 – Dr. Nick Christians
Part 2 – Dr. Adam Thoms

Turf and Weedy Grass Identification for the Sports Turf Manager
Speakers: Tony Koski, Ph.D. and Alison O’Connor, Ph.D. – Colorado State University

The Impact of Fraze Mowing on Overseeding
Speakers: Kyley Dickson, Ph.D. – University of Tennessee and Gregg Munshaw, Ph.D. – University of Kentucky

One Field, One Season: Maintaining Kenan Stadium
Speakers: Casey Carrick, CSFM – University of North Carolina and Chad Price, CSFM, CFB – Carolina Green Corp.

Irrigation Water Testing and Interpretation: Case Studies from the Field
Speakers: Charles Fontanier, Ph.D. and Justin Quetone Moss, Ph.D. – Oklahoma State University

Experiential Storytelling
Moderated by Joel White
This new education format is all about the triumphs, challenges, innovations and failures you as sports turf managers face every day. Nothing is off the table in this moderated session where attendees can share best practices, overcoming adversity when something went horribly wrong, and success stories. Come prepared to learn, laugh and connect on common issues with your peers.

5:15 – 6 pm – STMA Networking Sessions

Meet with your peers during this formalized networking session. Each category of membership meets separately to share issues and practical solutions.

Thurs., Jan. 24
8 – 9:15 am

Stadium Turfgrass Shade Management
Speaker: Dan Bergstrom, CSFM – BBVA Compass Stadium

Event Management: Developing a Landscape Protection Program
Speaker: Michael Stachowicz – National Park Service
Turf Managers are more than ever playing host to a wide variety of events on turfgrass. The ability of a facility to host a concert one night and a sports event the next day is becoming a key to the economic success of a facility. This presentation helps provide the framework for turf managers to develop their own landscape protection program.

Performance of Hybrid Grass Systems
Speakers: Kyley Dickson, Ph.D. and John Sorochan, Ph.D. – University of Tennessee

Mentoring/Training the Next Generation of Sports Turf Managers
Speaker: Tim VanLoo, CSFM – Iowa State University

Back to Basics: Improving the Soil Physical Properties of Highly Trafficked Turfgrass
Speaker: Andrew McNitt, Ph.D. – Penn State University

Competition Kills
Speaker: Michael Goatley, Ph.D. – Virginia Tech

9:30 – 10:45 am

Know Your Audience: Strategies for Discussing Pest ManagementPreview this education session
Speaker: Jim Brosnan, Ph.D. – University of Tennessee

Performance Testing and Player Safety
Speaker: Gerald Henry, Ph.D. – University of Georgia

Development of a Topdressing Program for Athletic Field Managers – Preview this education session
Speakers: Nick Christians, Ph.D. and Adam Thoms, Ph.D. – Iowa State University
Part 1 – Dr. Nick Christians
Part 2 – Dr. Adam Thoms

Elevate Your Value Through PR and Social Media!
Speakers: Tomas Silvani and Glenn Gray – Buffalo.Agency

Back to Basics: Understanding Soil Fertility and Soil Testing Results
Speaker: Bill Kreuser, Ph.D. – University of Nebraska-Lincoln
Soil test reports and fertilization programs are often needlessly confusing. This seminar will focus on the nutrients that are really important and explain which nutrients are rarely important agronomically. Attendees will also learn how to develop an effective and affordable fertilization program.

Alternative Infills and Maintenance of Synthetic Turf
Speaker: Dan Strunk, Ph.D. – University of Tennessee

11 am – 12 pm

Keynote – How to Grow Weeders Into Leaders
Speaker: Jeff McManus – University of Mississippi
Most organizations can’t pay for the talent they want, but with the right strategy most organizations can GROW the talent they have to get the leaders they need. Leadership is the art of motivating a group of people to act towards achieving a common goal. Leadership is a mindset. It begins with aligning the work to a vision of greatness, resiliency, opportunity and wisdom, and then developing an environment based on trust, communication, respect and credibility. Jeff takes the audience on a tour of Leadership Basics, developing a culture of accountability, and encouraging and recognizing the talent within our organizations and ourselves.

Fri., Jan. 25
8 – 10 am

Career Development Panel
Speakers: Allen Johnson, CSFM – Green Bay Packers, Sun Roesslein, CSFM – North Area Athletic Complex/Jeffco Schools Athletics and Tim VanLoo, CSFM – Iowa State University

Baseball Panel Discussion
Speakers: Andy Gossel – Covenant Christian High School, Matt Neri – State College Spikes Baseball and John Turnour – Washington Nationals

University Research Update
Speakers: Academics from various Universities

Dotmocracy
Moderated by Jeremy Tredway
This session will brainstorm a variety of topics from industry problems to hot topics. Each topic will be taped to the wall and attendees will vote on the topics they wish to discuss during the session by putting a colored dot sticker on that topic. The highest rated topics will be addressed.

1:30 – 3 pm – Repeat Sessions

Tackling Traffic: Reducing Traffic on Multi-Use FieldsPreview this education session
Speaker: Marc Moran, CSFM – Atlee High School
This presentation focuses on techniques used at Atlee High School to reduce traffic while working within a tight budget. Education, communication channels, traffic rotation plans and innovative field layouts have allowed for reduced traffic and wear in high traffic areas. These techniques have allowed us to work within a tight financial structure and still provide STMA FOY caliber fields.

Healthy Soil, Healthy Turf – Preview this education session
Speaker: Gregg Munshaw, Ph.D. – University of Kentucky

Positive Coaching for Sports Turf Managers, Part 2 (Self-Care)
Speaker: Josh McPherson, CSFM – University of Missouri

STMA partnered with Penxy to record educational sessions at the 2018 conference.  Education sessions were audio recorded and synchronized with PowerPoint presentations.  Access the recordings here.

TUES., JAN. 16
STMA SHORT COURSES – 2:30 – 5 PM

Should Financing & Leasing be a Part of Your Acquisition Strategy?
Speaker: Paul Danielson, CSE – The Toro Company
Historically, equipment acquisition in the sports turf segment (especially applicable to tax supported entities) has been predominantly a cash transaction. Available capital budget money has often not kept pace with the work you are required to accomplish. This presentation will help you determine if financing and leasing are a viable strategy, associated advantages and disadvantages, as well as navigating the financing process.

Thirty Years of Sports Turf Research – What Have We Learned?
Speaker: Trey Rogers, Ph.D. – Michigan State University
This presentation will cover important research topics and discoveries revolving around the Sports Turf Industry. The good, and the not so good, on what we have learned, as well as subjects that have come full circle in a 30-year period. This presentation will reinforce what everyone eventually learns – there are very few NEW ideas, only technology to carry the original ones forward.

WED., JAN. 17
8 – 9:30 AM – OPENING GENERAL SESSION

We Are All in This Together: Relationships Between Sports Field Managers and Athletic Directors
Speakers: Weston Appelfeller, CSFM – Columbus Crew SC; Andy Gossel -Covenant Christian HS; Andy Loughnane – Columbus Crew SC; Megan VanArsdale – Boyle County Schools
Join us for discussion about how to establish and expand successful working relationships between sports turf managers and their supervisors and athletic directors. Questions and comments from the audience will be encouraged.

9:45 – 10:45 AM

Sports Field Drainage – Problems and Solutions
Speaker: Andrew McNitt, Ph.D. – Penn State University

‘Professional’ Turfgrass Management
Speaker: Michael Goatley, Jr., Ph.D. – Virginia Tech

In Season Plant Growth Regulators: High Risk or High Reward?
Speaker: Keith Winter – Fort Wayne TinCaps

STC Guidelines for Synthetic Turf Base Systems
PDF Document
Speaker: Francois Hebert – Design & Solutions for Sports Surfaces F.H ltd (DSSS)

The Importance of Managing Soil Moisture on Athletic Fields
Speaker: Kyley Dickson, Ph. D. – University of Tennessee

Athletic Field Performance Testing
Speakers: Gerald Henry, Ph.D. and Chase Straw – University of Georgia
Performance testing of sports fields is becoming more common for the quantification of surface properties such as hardness and traction. Enhancements in sensor/sampling technology and increased concern for athlete safety and field performance has further driven interest. This presentation will teach attendees how to operate current sensor/sampler technology and integrate their use into daily maintenance practices.

11 AM – 12 PM

Beyond the Science, the Art of Sports Turf
Session Handout
Speaker: Stephen Crockett, CSFM – City of Union City, Tennessee
At any level, from municipal to professional, there are a great variety of techniques which can be used to make a field aesthetically pleasing to all involved. This presentation will cover striping patterns, logo painting, turf colorants, and new technology and techniques to accomplish at every level.

Warm Season Weed Control
Speaker: James Brosnan, Ph.D. – University of Tennessee

Synthetic Field Management
Speakers: Matt Anderson, CSFM – The University of Arizona; Sarah Martin, CSFM – City of Phoenix, Parks and Recreation; Doug Schattinger – Pioneer Athletics

Our Season with TifGrand
Speaker: Nick Fedewa – SMG Jacksonville/Jaguars

Establishing a Bermuda Field Without Irrigation
Speaker: Michael Skelton – Culpeper County Parks and Rec

The Ups and Downs of Soil pH Modification
Speaker: Nick Christians, Ph.D. – Iowa State University

2 – 3:15 PM

Managing Stress and Avoiding Burnout
Burnout Checklist
Stress Symptom Checklist
Stress and Burnout Action Plan
Speaker: Lisa Goatley, M.S., L.P.C. – The Cascade Group

Athletic Field Drainage from Design to Maintenance
Speaker: Thomas Rychlik, P.E., LEED-AP – Gewalt Hamilton Associates, Inc.

Renovating a Collegiate Baseball Field in Multiple Phases
Speaker: Jon Fitch – Shive-Hattery, Inc

Budget Cuts – Are You Prepared to Justify?
Speaker: Roger Havlak – City of San Angelo / Angelo State University
This presentation will provide useful information to individuals who are involved in developing and implementing sports field and landscape maintenance budgets, capital expenditures, project budgets, water budgets, etc. The focus will be on the development of minimum maintenance standards for park and sports field systems, prioritizing and justifying expenditures, and utilizing PET water budgets.

Advanced Soil Science for the Sports Turfgrass Professional
Speaker: Bryan Hopkins, Ph.D. – Brigham Young University

Facility Liability and Lawsuit Prevention
Session Handout
Speaker: Patrick McGuiness – Zlimen and McGuiness, Attorneys at Law

3:30 – 5 PM

Optimizing Bermudagrass Athletic Field Winter Survival in the Transition Zone
Speakers: Marcus Dean, CSFM and Gregg Munshaw, Ph.D. – University of Kentucky

Multiple Sports on Fields and Multiple Locations of Schools
Speakers: Danny Foye, Jr. and Kevin Morgan – Duval County School Board
This presentation will discuss the challenges of caring for multiple fields, hosting multiple sports, located within Duval County schools. Attendees will learn about maintenance scheduling challenges and working closely with athletic directors and coaches, how to use local resources to help maintain safe fields, and ways to network with local professional and college teams to utilize resources and benefit all.

Athlete Perception and Injury Risk Within Natural Turfgrass Sports Fields
Speakers: Gerald Henry, Ph.D. and Chase Straw – University of Georgia

In With the New: BMPs for Regrassing Cool-Season Turf
Speakers: Michael Buras, CSFM – Longwood Cricket Club; John Inguagiato, Ph.D. – University of Connecticut

Low Budget Weed Control
Speakers: Jared Hoyle, Ph.D. – Kansas State University; Jay McCurdy, Ph.D. – Mississippi State University

Positive Coaching for Sports Turf Managers
VIA Classification of Character Strengths and Virtues
Character Strength Icons
Speaker: Josh McPherson, CSFM – University of Missouri

5:15 – 6:15 PM – STMA NETWORKING SESSIONS

Meet with your peers during this formalized networking session. Each category of membership meets separately to share issues and practical solutions.

THURS., JAN. 18
8 – 9:15 AM

Professional Development: Necessary Steps in Your Career Advancement
Speaker: James Bergdoll, CSFM – City of Chattanooga Department of Public Works

Sports Turf Research Focusing on Athlete Performance and Safety
Speaker: John Sorochan, Ph.D. – University of Tennessee

Asking the Tough Questions
Speaker: Grady Miller, Ph.D. – NC State University
As one of the writers for SportsTurf Magazine’s “Ask the Expert”, Dr. Grady Miller has been involved in over 100 columns in the last 18 years. He has answered questions about ants, zeolites, blood, goats, shoes, vandals, and everything in between. This presentation will highlight the informative to the funny stories, as well as questions most frequently asked and those that caused the most controversy.

Behind the Scenes: Recreational and Collegiate Athletic Field Management at the University of Florida
Speaker: Jason Kruse, Ph.D. – University of Florida

Making Better Weather-Based Management Decisions
Speaker: Brad Jakubowski – Penn State University

Topdressing and Cultivation for Your Athletic Fields
Speakers: Nick Christians, Ph.D. and Adam Thoms, Ph.D. – Iowa State University

9:30 – 10:45 AM

Rebranding Your Sports Turf and Grounds Maintenance Operation
Session Handout – Flowchart
Session Handout
Speaker: Kevin Mercer, CSFM, CGM – Denison University

John Mascaro’s Photo Quiz Comes Alive
Speaker: John Mascaro – Turf-Tec International

Turfgrass Insects
Speaker: Gary Brooks – Bayer

Understanding Dislodgeable Foliar Residues and Optimizing Pesticide Applications
Speaker: Travis Gannon, Ph.D. – NC State University
Much concern exists around human pesticide exposure from treated turfgrass areas. Understanding factors that affect dislodgeable foliar residues is imperative to ensure human health is not adversely affected. This presentation will focus on optimizing pesticide efficacy and devising best management practices to minimize pesticide exposure and off-target movement.

PR/Social Media Recognition: Why It’s Important for Your Boss to Know!
Speakers: Glenn Gray and Tomás Silvani – Buffalo.Agency

Topdressing and Cultivation for Your Athletic Fields
Speakers: Nick Christians, Ph.D. and Adam Thoms, Ph.D. – Iowa State University

11 AM – 12 PM

Keynote – Mark Johnson – Retired NCAA Division 1 Baseball Coach
Everyone Counts, Because Everyone Brings an Attitude, Energy, and Enthusiasm
Mark Johnson has spent years speaking throughout the country and overseas. He will bring high energy and exhibit 41 years of coaching motivation. He will visit humorous topics concerning the “In’s and Outs of Baseball” and the honored tradition of baseball “signs.” Mark will inspirationally touch on subjects of adversity, pressure, vision, and risking to achieve. And in the end, he will ask you to get off the sidelines and “let your light shine.”

FRI., JAN. 19
8 – 10 AM

ASBA Panel Discussion – Analysing and Comparing Bid Specifications: An Apples to Apples Comparison
Speakers: James Catella, PE – Clark Companies; Michael Gentile – Sports Labs USA; Craig Honkomp – Sportsworks Field Design
Every specification is different. This panel will help attendees navigate the “gray areas” and define product specifications vs. performance specifications for both natural and synthetic turf projects.

Panel Discussion – Cool-Season Field Renovation
Speakers: Leah Brilman, Ph.D. – DLF Pickseed USA; John Inguagiato, Ph.D. – University of Connecticut; Brad Park – Rutgers University; Pamela Sherratt – The Ohio State University

Panel Discussion – When Disaster Strikes: A Guide to Manage, Recover & Prepare
Speakers: Kim Bybee – City of Carrollton; Bruce Suddeth – University of South Carolina Upstate; Mason Ward – City of Carrollton

Lightning Rounds

1:30 – 3 PM – REPEAT SESSIONS

‘Professional’ Turfgrass Management
Speaker: Michael Goatley, Jr., Ph.D. – Virginia Tech
Being a professional in the sports turf industry goes far beyond the basic mastery of agronomic skills. How do you present yourself? What are ways to advance your career? Can you become a better communicator? Can you build a work-related team such that everyone benefits both personally and professionally? Attend this session to learn strategies to help increase your level of professionalism.

In Season Plant Growth Regulators: High Risk or High Reward?
Speaker: Keith Winter – Fort Wayne TinCaps

Athletic Field Drainage from Design to Maintenance
Speaker: Thomas Rychlik, P.E., LEED-AP – Gewalt Hamilton Associates, Inc.

TUES., JAN. 24

2:30 – 5 pm

A Break Through Approach to Human Growth and Leadership Development– Preview this conference education session

Speaker: Phil Eason – PLG Leadership

Presentation Handouts::

Participants will learn a break through approach to human growth, development and leadership by understanding that the key to success is to fully understand how to apply their greatest talents. A talent is a naturally recurring pattern of thought, feeling or behavior.  Tap into this wisdom for more direction, confidence, hope and productivity. Participants will learn how to identify and build on their natural strengths.

Calibration Basics for Spreaders and Sprayers – Small vs. Large

Calibration Worksheet

Speaker: Samuel Doak – Virginia Tech

Research for Everyday Field Managers

Speaker: Grady Miller, Ph.D. – North Carolina State University

WED., JAN. 25

8 – 9:30 am

Opening General Session
A Visit with the Doctors – Your Annual Sports Turf Physical
Speakers: Andrew McNitt, Ph.D. – The Pennsylvania State University; John Sorochan, Ph.D. – University of Tennessee
Join us for discussion and commentary on individual topics important to the sports turf industry.  Questions and comments from the audience will be encouraged.

9:45 – 10:45 AM

What About the Micronutrients?- Preview this conference education session

Speaker: Nick Christians, Ph.D. – Iowa State University

Turf 101

Speaker: Trey Rogers, Ph.D. – Michigan State University

Central Control and Varying Types of Soils in Sports Fields

Presentation Outline

Speaker: John Cogdill – City of Boulder Parks and Recreation
Boulder, CO resides in a semi-arid environment, receiving about 20.7 inches of precipitation a year and often experiencing varying levels of drought conditions.  With Boulder Parks and Recreation Dept. as the largest user of water in the city, the presentation will focus on use of Central Control when managing water on different types of soils, water conservation scheduling techniques, and water component strategies to promote plant health.

Managing a Synthetic Turf Infield and Natural Grass Outfield

Speakers: Chris Pearl and Jonathan Smoot – Eastern Kentucky University

In Season Resodding

Speaker: Tony Leonard – Philadelphia Eagles

11 AM – 12 PM

Have You Changed Your Filters Lately?

Speaker: Tony Strickland, CSFM – Athletic Construction Incorporated

Balancing Management and Legal Liabilities: BMPs for Success

Speaker: Bryan Hopkins, Ph.D. – Brigham Young University

Management of K-12 Fields in the Transition Zone

Speaker: Grady Miller, Ph.D. – North Carolina State University

A Spring and Summer Renovation Plan – Preview this conference education session

Speaker: Pamela Sherratt – The Ohio State University

Why Every Turf Manager Should Consider Using PGRs– Preview this conference education session

Speaker: Ben Polimer – Town of Weston
The presentation will discuss the modes of action for typical plant growth regulators (PGRs) used in sports turf and their practical uses from Little League fields to professional stadiums. The cost of materials has made it affordable for all managers to incorporate PGRs into their turf management programs. Growth regulators help with wear tolerance, reducing clippings, early spring green up, and reducing painting.

2 – 3:15 PM

Converting Commonwealth Stadium to Synthetic and Our Involvement

Speaker: Marcus Dean, CSFM – University of Kentucky

Positive Coaching for Sports Turf Managers

To complete the character values survey – click here

Speaker: Josh McPherson, CSFM – University of Missouri
Positive Coaching is a new way to think about building a better team.  You will learn how to invest in your co-workers and find out what is important to them, as well as how to transition your team from a fixed mindset into a growth mindset.  This presentation will help you discover what you and your co-workers value and how you can use those strengths to guide your short term and long term goals.

Converting to LED Sports Lights at your Facility

Speaker: Dan Bergstrom, CSFM – Houston Astros, LLC

#WeedWatch2017 – Things to Watch for in Weed Management This Year – Preview this education session
Speaker: Jim Brosnan, Ph.D. – University of Tennessee

Sports Field Management on a Shoestring Budget – Part 1

Speakers: Mike Goatley, Jr., Ph.D. – Virginia Tech; Michael Skelton – Culpeper County Parks and Recreation
Sports field managers typically face budget restrictions that result in choices and sacrifices in strategies to best manage their fields.  This presentation will focus on proven strategies to stretch your budgeted dollars as far as possible by way of novel grassing alternatives and establishment/renovation techniques, strategies in building your soil, forming an equipment/tool inventory that best serves your needs, and modifying equipment to expand its usefulness.

THURS., JAN. 26

8 – 9:15 AM

So You Want to Be a Meteorologist?  Weather and Your Venue

Speaker: Kevin Kloesel, Ph.D. – University of Oklahoma
Severe weather in the US is unique, and short-fused high impact weather hazards can strike any venue at any time.  This presentation will provide an overview of common weather hazards at sports facilities, including lightning, winter weather, flooding rain, hail, and tornadoes, and the emergency planning needed to keep those that work on athletic fields safe.

Pushing Bermuda’s Boundaries: Managing Bermudagrass in the Transition Zone and Beyond

Speakers: Marcus Dean, CSFM and Gregg Munshaw, Ph.D. – University of Kentucky

Warm-Season Sports Turf Weed Management – Preview this conference education session

Speaker: Jay McCurdy, Ph.D. – Mississippi State University

Managing Stress and Avoiding Burnout

Speaker: Lisa Goatley, M.S., L.P.C. – The Cascade Group

Stress Symptom Checklist

Test Yourself: The Burnout Checklist

Stress and Burnout Action Plan

Sports Turf Management, Past, Present, Future
Speaker: Bob Campbell, CSFM – Retired

9:30 – 10:45 AM

You Can Grow Grass, Now Let’s Grow Your Program

Speaker: David Pinsonneault, CSFM, CPRP – Lexington DPW

Factors that Affect Dislodgeable Foliar Residues and Environmental Fate of Pesticides

Speaker: Travis Gannon, Ph.D. – NC State University
Much concern exists around human pesticide exposure, and understanding factors that affect dislodgeable foliar residues is imperative to ensure human health is not adversely affected. Understanding the biological and chemical attributes of pesticides and their fate after application is also imperative to optimize pesticide efficacy while minimizing off-target movement. This presentation will help attendees devise best management practices to minimize pesticide exposure and off-target movement.

Who’s Afraid of Calculations?

Calculations Worksheet

Speaker: Samuel Doak – Virginia Tech

Renovating Cool-Season Sports Turf Dominated by Annual Bluegrass

Speaker: Brad Park – Rutgers University

Management Standards for Athletic Field Management and Materials Specification
Speaker: Barry Stewart, Ph.D. – Mississippi State University

FIFA World Cup: Preparing for a Final – Challenges and Successes

Speakers: Marcela Munoz – Syngenta UK; Sebastian Munoz – Turf Masters Chile

FRI., JAN. 27

8 – 10 AM

Football Panel
Panelists: Clark Cox, CSFM – University of South Carolina; Stephen Crockett, CSFM – City of Union City Tennessee; Nicholas Fedewa – SMG Jacksonville/Jaguars; Rob Julian – Tampa Bay Buccaneers
This panel discussion will cover multiple aspects of maintenance for professional, college and university, municipal, and K-12 football fields.  Management tips and tricks as well as safety practices will be presented.  The session is an open forum discussion where attendees can ask questions pertaining to the maintenance of safe football playing surfaces.

Baseball Panel
Panelists: Dan Bergstrom, CSFM – Houston Astros, LLC; Nick McKenna – Texas A&M Athletics; Tom Nielsen – Louisville Baseball Club; Rick Perruzzi, CSFM, CPRP – City of South Portland, ME Parks, Recreation & Waterfront
Sports turf managers from across the country will share the various management strategies they utilize to maintain baseball fields. After a brief introduction from each panelist, attendees will have the opportunity to ask questions and discuss challenges and solutions related to Major League, Minor League, College and University, and K-12 baseball fields and facilities.

Pesticides Panel
Panelists: Jim Brosnan, Ph.D. – University of Tennessee; Travis Gannon, Ph.D. – NC State University; Jason Henderson, Ph.D. – University of Connecticut; Jay McCurdy, Ph.D. – Mississippi State University
This panel will address the control of turfgrass pests using both chemical control strategies and pesticide-free management strategies.  Attendees are encouraged to bring questions regarding pesticide resistance, exposure, new formulations, and product selection.  Attendees experiencing pesticide bans are also encouraged to attend to learn about compliance and alternative maintenance strategies.

Cultivars/Varieties Panel
Panelists: Leah Brilman, Ph.D. – DLF Pickseed USA; Gregg Munshaw, Ph.D. – University of Kentucky; Brad Park – Rutgers University; Pamela Sherratt – The Ohio State University
This panel of experts will help you decipher which turfgrass cultivar or variety is best for your situation.  Recommendations for highest recuperative potential, best color, highest pest tolerance, and best heat, drought, or cold tolerance will all be discussed.  Bring your questions to help determine which turfgrasses are best suited for high performing, safe playing fields.

Innovative Sessions

10:30 AM

Planning for a Synthetic Turf Field Replacement

Speaker: Mark Heinlein – Turf Reclamation Solutions, LLC

11 AM

Polymer Coated Fertilizer: Takes a Beating and Keeps on Feeding – Preview this conference education session

Speaker: Eric Miltner, Ph.D. – Koch Turf & Ornamental

11:30 AM

Porous Inorganic Amendments – Unpacking How They Really Work

Speaker: George Serrill – EnviroTech Soil Solutions, Inc.

12 PM

Stadium Grow Lighting Innovation in Europe and the USA

Speaker: Simon Gumbrill – Stadium Grow Lighting (SGL)

1:30 – 3 PM

Taking Stress in Stride
Speaker: Mary Owen – University of Massachusetts Amherst

Managing the Problem Employee

Speaker: Lisa Goatley, M.S., L.P.C. – The Cascade Group

Paying it Forward:  How to Be Helpful When Asked for Advice

Speaker: Rich Watson – Laurel Lawnmower
Every year there are new field managers that enter the profession at the K-12 or municipal level that have never maintained a sports field.  This talk will focus on how to provide help to field managers that may not have the manpower, resources or experience to enjoy success at this point in their career.  Some topics of discussion will be: field maintenance concepts, communication, continuing education, and priority budgeting.