ONLA Transitioning to MGIX Series
Look for a new format this year for the Midwest Green Industry Experience (MGIX).
Instead of a single trade show and conference, the Ohio Nursery and Landscape Association (ONLA) is transitioning to a collection of three professional networking programs for 2018-2019. The new programs, called the MGIX Series, will prioritize education, business development, collaboration and relationship building.
A New Setup
ONLA is hoping that the new conference format will better serve its membership, by offering more personalized programming throughout the year and at various locations across the state.
The first event in the series, the MGIX Member Summit, is scheduled for Dec. 12 and 13, 2018, at the Hilton Easton in Columbus. [Note the new venue.] The two-day summit is designed to provide a solutions-based learning experience for landscaping professionals. Highlights will include a keynote presentation by Terri McEnaney, president of Bailey Nurseries; “speed-networking” with MGIX Member Summit sponsors; and ONLA’s annual awards celebration.
Breakout tracks will dive deeply into best practices and emerging trends pertinent to green industry business owners, managers and team leaders. Scheduled topics include:
- Landscape Design and Maintenance
- Business and Marketing
- Plant Trends and Best Selections
- Pests and Diseases
Of particular interest to irrigation professionals:
- Sustainable Irrigation in Residential and Commercial Projects. Presented by Jeff Muhlbach, Cleveland-based irrigation design consultant and landscape architect.
- Environmental Requirements: What You Need to Know and The Path Toward Sustainability. Both sessions presented by Daniel Sowry, from the Ohio EPA’s Office of Compliance Assistance and Pollution Prevention.
Industry speakers will include national experts, Ohio State University educators and local colleagues. Continuing education units (CEU’s) will be available for all sessions. To download the complete educational schedule, click here.
Registration for Member Summit
MGIX Training Days
MGIX Training Days: Gear Up for Spring, the second and third events in the MGIX Series, will take place in 2019.These two events are scheduled for March 5 in Dayton and March 7 in Cleveland. Both of the one-day programs will feature educational sessions, workshops and business development opportunities for green industry professionals.
The ONLA will announce details for the Training Days events at a later date. Registration for MGIX Training Days opens in mid-December, 2018.
Trade Show History
This new format (sans trade show) represents quite a change for the organization and the end of an era.
In fact, did you know that ONLA has hosted some form of its annual trade show since 1964? (The association itself has been around since 1908.)
Over the years, the show just kept getting bigger. In 1994 it became known at The Central Environmental Nursery Trade Show (CENTS). In its peak year of 2002, CENTS featured 1,357 booths occupied by 710 firms. The number of registered attendees hit a whopping 13,035.
After that, attendance gradually began to dwindle, as more green industry professionals chose to transact business online.
In 2017, ONLA rebranded the event as MGIX, in an effort to be more inclusive of its diverse trade show audience. It also expanded its roster of educational opportunities.