Get Extra Smart! Attend a Pre-Con and/or Post-Con Seminar (5 to choose from)

Choose from four separate pre-conference seminars and one post-conference seminar at the 60th Anniversary WCTA Conference and Trade Show, taking place February 14-16, 2024 at the Victoria Conference Centre in beautiful, downtown Victoria, BC.

The pre-cons all take place Wednesday, February 14 from 12:30pm to 4:30pm and the post-con runs Friday, February 16 from 12:30pm to 2:00pm and includes trade show access that same day.  Keep reading for more details



Thomas A. Nikolai, Ph.D. has been performing turfgrass research and teaching at Michigan State University since 1992.   Areas of research interest include cultural and mechanical practices and relevant classes he has taught include, Turfgrass and the Environment, Pesticide and Fertilizer Application Technology, Fundamentals of Soils, Turfgrass Irrigation, and Turf and Landscape Analytical Practices.  He has given presentation in 30 countries, 7 Canadian Provinces, and 36 States. 


Michael Rabe is a Graduate Student in the Plant, Soil, and Microbial Sciences Department at Michigan State University. His thesis research focuses on comparing Variable Depth Rootzone and Capillary Hydroponic System putting greens to promote sustainable putting green management. In addition to pursuing his masters degree, Michael is the Assistant Manager of the Hancock Turfgrass Research Center at Michigan State University. 

'Soil, Air, Water and BMP's'
Dr. Thomas Nikolai and Mike Rabe, Michigan State University
BC:  4.0 IPM

The past 30 years turfgrass management has changed considerably due in relatively equally parts to increased technology, research results, and pressure from environmental activists.  Over that time period, we have transitioned from IPM, to sustainability, to BMP.  This class will equally cover the growth and decay of pesticides, fertilizers, golf course mechanical and cultural practices with equal focus on the past, present, and future.  

Mark Colgate BSc, PhD is Professor at the Gustavson School of Business, University of Victoria, Canada. His primary research areas are service excellence, social psychology and its use within business and using the athletic approach to coaching in the organizational context.  He has worked for organizations in Canada, China, Australia, New Zealand and Ireland. Mark has received two University wide Teaching Excellence Awards, once at the University of Auckland, New Zealand in 2000 and in 2014 the same award at the University of Victoria, Canada.

'Understanding Coaching and Its Importance'
Mark Colgate, University of Victoria

In this workshop, participants explore the distinctions between management, mentoring, and coaching in a 45-minute session. The attributes of an effective coach are discussed, followed by a group dialogue sharing coaching experiences. The subsequent 30-minute segment introduces the 5E coaching model through presentation and video illustration. "Your Turn: Speed Coaching" allocates 30 minutes for participants to engage in practical coaching sessions, paired with a debrief. The following half-hour is dedicated to understanding the "Power of Feedback" through exercises. "Your Turn part #2: Role Play" encourages a second round of coaching with new partners, concluding with a group discussion. The workshop closes with 15 minutes of reflections, allowing participants to consolidate their insights and learning from the entire session. The comprehensive structure aims to equip participants with practical coaching skills and a deeper understanding of coaching principles in a condensed yet impactful format.

Mario Lanthier has been a popular speaker at WCTA, CGSA, ISA and other conferences over the years, and has been teaching the BC Pesticide Applicator Certificate course at the WCTA conference since 2003.  He has been working in the horticulture industry since 1980 and his company, CropHealth Advising and Research, offers consulting services and pest management recommendations with or without pesticides.  

'CEC Point Central - How to Use Pesticides'
Mario Lanthier, Crophealth Advising & Research
BC:  2.0 S&E, 2.0 AT

This in-depth session offers four CECs/CEUs in the more difficult to obtain Application Technology and Safety and Environmental Protection categories.  Participants will work in teams to discuss their best answers for a hands-on portion and a quiz.  The session will review the modes of action of fungicides (most common in golf courses), herbicides (most common in landscapes) and rodenticides (subject to new provincial regulations).  We will also discuss legal requirements for the protection of the environment and maintenance of pesticide spray equipment.

Tab Buckner is the Parks Operations Department Manager for the Township of Langley leading a diverse team of 40 full-time employees and 30 temporary full-time staff, responsible for managing various recreational facilities and natural resources.

Actively engaged in the industry, he has held Director and President roles on both the STC and WCTA boards, advising the STC board and instructing courses in natural grass sports field management and synthetic sports field maintenance for the past five years.

Sports Turf Canada Presents 'Synthetic Turf Maintenance Primer'

This course explores the myth that artificial turf is low maintenance. It will be of interest to those who manage or maintain synthetic sports turf and for those who want additional knowledge of its maintenance requirements. Topics include:

  - What is synthetic turf and its history and evolution?
  - How to identify your type of field and its design components.
  - Installation, drainage techniques and schedules.
  - Equipment use, setup and maintenance overview
  - Inspection and troubleshooting common problems

'Intro to Turf Management 2.0'
Stan Kazymerchyk, Kwantlen University 
12:30pm - 2:00pm, Friday, February 16
$99/ person includes Friday access to trade show

Building on the popular Turf 101 seminars offered at every WCTA conference since 2018, tenured turf management instructor from Kwantlen University, Stan Kazymerchyk, will deliver this 1.5 hour immersive super-session designed for front-line golf and sportsfield management staff needing better turf management knowledge and understanding to perform their daily roles.  Turf 201 will extend previous efforts but there is no prerequisite and the modest registration fee includes trade show access on Friday, February 16.  Topics include:

- Renovation
  - Training Staff
  - Personnel Management
  - Standards/Specifications/Scheduling
  - Communications/Meetings
  - Capital Improvements
  - Sustainable Turf Management
  - Career Advancement

CEC/CEU AVAILABILITY (AB approvals in progress)