2024 WCTA Conference and Trade Show To Take Place in ???

After a wildly successful comeback show at the RiverRock this past February, the new WCTA Board of Directors has begun the process of selecting conference venues for the next three years.  The options have been narrowed down and it’s now time to seek member input to help with the final decision.

As you consider our options, keep in mind the following, some of which has been learned from years of experience and some is just relevant to the conversation (not advocating for or condoning any particular venue here).

•  There are only so many venues that can handle our event, especially if we want to keep it (more or less) under one roof, which we typically do with a couple exceptions.  There have been other location suggestions in the past, ie. Abbotsford Ag-Rec, Kelowna Delta, Coast Langley etc, but all have been discarded very early in the process for various reasons.  For example, the doors at the Kelowna Delta are not big enough to get equipment through.  

The following table lists venues we’ve been to by year along with total attendance.  2014 and 2011 joint CGSA shows in Vancouver are not shown.  Also, one other potential venue is the Richmond Conference Centre (Marriott).

•  The Board has already narrowed our choices for 2024 and space is on hold, either Feb 14-16 or Feb 21-23.  The final decision doesn’t have to be sequential, ie. we could go to just one or two of these over the course of three years. 
    o RiverRock (both weeks available)
    o Penticton Lakeside Hotel (2nd week only)
    o Victoria Convention Centre (1st week only)

•  Venues in larger population areas and resorts are more expensive across the board including food/beverage, room rates, space rental, show supplier costs, etc.  

•  We typically see higher attendance numbers in the larger population centres.

•  Ease of travel has started to become more of an issue the past few years, ie. winter driving, ferry shutdowns.  On a related note, it’s typically cheaper/easier to fly into YVR than anywhere else, for both delegates/vendors and our speakers.

•  GCSAA, SFMA and CGSA shows are all non-factors in 2024 except of course that we want to avoid a direct timing conflict.
    o For 2025, GCSAA and SFMA are both in California and we assume CGSA will be out west, perhaps Calgary.  This is typically when we see less attendance due to competition.
    o For 2026, GCSAA is in Orlando and SFMA is in Texas so no expected issues.

•  2024 is our 60th Anniversary show so we might want to consider something special.

•  Both Richmond and Victoria have offered significant financial incentives that dramatically reduce production costs.  We are working on some form of ferry discount possibility but this might be a long shot.

There is a lot more to consider and everyone will have their own motivations but keep in mind the business model has to work.  Now that you know many of the background factors, please go to the following link by Friday, April 28th to make your selections.  This survey will take less than 10 seconds!


Thanks for your help - we hope to have a final decision announced by the end of May.