My First World of Concrete as editor of Concrete Construction was in 2001. Although I was peripherally involved with the seminars and Mega Demos, the magazine staff didn't have much else going on. I went to some seminars, talked to a lot of contractors and exhibitors, and spent a lot of time looking and listening.
Fast forward to World of Concrete 2006—I won't have much spare time this year. We have greatly increased the number of special events sponsored by our magazines: Concrete Construction, Residential Concrete, The Concrete Producer, Masonry Construction, and Concrete & Masonry Construction Products.
Returning events include CC's Artistry in Decorative Concrete demonstrations with a new field of 12 artists pushing their craft to its limits. MC will be back with its fastest trowel competition and CMCP will again sponsor the Most Innovative Products contest. These are all great programs that you won't want to miss.
The Mega Demos are always a highlight, but this year Joe Nasvik has pulled together a two-day event focused on residential concrete. We're calling it “At Home with Concrete.” You'll get to see all of the various concrete wall systems in action, including floor systems and finishing methods.
For years I have complained about the lack of diversity and shortage of women in our industry. My wife was a concrete testing technician for a year, so I know firsthand that the concrete industry can be a lonely place for a woman. Now we are trying to do something about that. Led by Kari Moosmann, one of our very talented editors, the Women in Concrete Luncheon and Forum will bring together women working in the concrete construction industry and give them the chance to get together to build a support network and to see that they aren't completely alone out there. Bringing talented women into this business is critical to our success, so if you have any bright women on your staff, send them to this luncheon.
There are many other things going on that I will describe in more detail in the December issue. For example, another really cool event you won't want to miss is the auction for the Concrete Industry Management program at Middle Tennessee State University. So far, Somero has donated a brand new Power Rake and Mc-Neilus a ready-mix truck.
The “Don't Work for Free” panel session I will be hosting on Thursday should give you some great ideas. See the writeup in this issue of our Industry Trends Roundtable for a taste of what you'll learn.
And finally, don't miss our special Sunday tour of Hoover Dam and the new bridge now under construction just downstream from the dam. Sponsored by Sika and hosted by Rick Yelton, editor of The Concrete Producer, and me, we will have some brief onsite presentations. This will be both fun and educational.
I don't expect to have any spare time during World of Concrete and neither will you. See you in Vegas.
William D. Palmer Jr.
Editor in Chief