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Omicron variant concerns force change of plan for CGSA/OGSA conference and trade show

Event rescheduled for February as virtual offering


December 23, 2021
By Turf & Rec

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Organizers of the upcoming Canadian Golf Course Management Conference have adjusted their plans in the wake of rising concerns associated with the spread of COVID-19’s Omicron variant.

The conference and trade show, originally scheduled for Jan. 18-20 in Toronto, has been moved ahead to Feb. 22-24 and will be offered virtually. The event was originally slated to be live and in-person following a virtual edition of the conference a year ago.

“This was not an easy decision and was not taken lightly,” John Scott, Canadian Golf Superintendents Association president, said. “The Canadian has been a highlight on the calendar for many, and we were hopeful we could safely host an in-person event this coming January. However, we must protect our members, stakeholders and their families. We know that additional delegates will now be able to attend this event as cross-country travel and hotel accommodations will no longer be required.”

The 2022 event is a joint venture between the CGSA and the Ontario Golf Superintendents Association.

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“This is a disappointing turn of events,” Al Schwemler, OGSA president, said. “We were looking forward to much-needed face-to-face interactions with colleagues and suppliers from across the country. However, given the speed in which this variant is spreading, the safety of all attendees must be our first priority. Although disheartening, delivering excellent education to our members is paramount, and the OGSA is looking forward to partnering with the CGSA for the virtual conference and trade show in its place. We hope to see the same level of interest from our members as we pivot to this new format.”

February’s virtual event will be offered via the pheedloop platform, CGSA chief operating officer Kathryn Wood said.

“We will build upon the success of the 2021 Canadian and will continue to provide the educational content and networking that members have come to expect,” she said. “Given the virtual event flexibility, we will also explore adding additional sessions that would not have been able to happen with our in-person event.”

The virtual event will include a trade show that will allow attendees to browse the booths and see what the exhibitors have to offer, with an option to chat with exhibitors in real time to ask questions and get answers on the spot.

More details will be available Jan. 10, including the revised schedule and information pertaining to registration, sponsorships and exhibiting.

Delegates who have already booked accommodations at the Sheraton Centre Toronto Hotel should receive an email to note cancellations without penalty.