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Re: IAS Miami Show

Hi Betsy,
Speaking from the perspective of someone who has never gone to Miami because of the cost and time, but who used to import thousands of tuberous aroids every year before I got tired of fiddling with sales, I can say that if a mini-convention were close to me here in PA I would attend.  I think many societies (and not just major scientific societies that have been mentioned in some of the posts) blossom because they have so many local chapters and these local chapters have a show every year in their town/region.  This is surely true of bonsai societies as well as cactus and succulent societies that I am aware of around the Pittsburgh region.  Regional meeting then often move from place to place to bring in a wider audience as has been suggested here (the Northeast Cactus and Succulent meeting was in Pittsburgh last year for example).
It seems that this is what has been suggested by the others from my reading of the posts, but perhaps I am wrong and I should not speak for others as that is ther worst thing anyone can do.
It is possible that there are not enough aroid enthusiasts to sustain regional meetings outside of 3-4 places and that is something that would cause greater long-term probems for the society than what you mention.
I am happy to see that people are enthusiastic about getting these plants into the hands of the growers from other tropical countries as this would over the long haul help to drastically drive down prices for these plants in the U.S. which is  something most growers are totally against.....I am glad that the aroid community is more visionary and would  rather increase the number of growers that can then import back into the U.S. and drive down prices at their own expense.  I can tell you that I recently got several nasty e-mails when I spent some effort trying to track down large commercial growers for a certain South American Amaryllid as small nurseries that charge large sums of money realized that if I could pull this off it would hurt their bottom line.  My reasoning that making the plant more accessible to the masses at a low cost would increase the overall desire to try it in a window was met with disdain......I am glad that the aroid growers here are not thinking only of themselves and their profit but rather they would rather put the plants into the hands of other growers who can hopefully mass produce them like they have so many other plants....Bravo!!!
I agree with everything you say about the backbone of the society and the amount of work required, but hopefully those in the Miami area would not feel slighted, but rather would view it as a chance to see other spectacular collections which likely exist in other parts of the country.
I would love to have an aroid gathering near my home so that I can go to it, as there is no chance I am going to spend several hundred $$ going to Miami....not something I can justify and I dare say I am not alone in that lack of justification.
Just the thoughts of someone who can not and will not make it to a show in Miami,
Dan Devor
Gibsonia, PA
----- Original Message -----
Sent: Friday, October 12, 2007 4:09 PM
Subject: [Aroid-l] IAS Miami Show

" I do suppose one of the most difficult issues would be the
> transporting of plants for sale.  Obviously a lot of the suppliers
> for the Florida show are from that area and only have to load up a
> truck to deliver the goods."

Let's just take a moment to realize how difficult it is for the Miami area
folk who do so very much to make the Aroid Show a major success. Denis and
Ron Weeks and many others including Tricia do so very much to pull the show
together each year with their many years of experience and dedication.
Believe me, they do it with such grace, they make it look easy. It is not
easy!!!!! I do not think there are growers of aroids in this genre in other
places around this country. They give and give and give and share and share
and share.................. Do realize once you let go of that backbone, you
may well let go of having shows in Miami in the future. I understand your
desire to move the show around, but it might be wise to contemplate what we
might lose if we did such. Of course, I am sure other aspects might be
gained. Change always opens doors and in the process, doors may well close
so that going back may not be possible.

Think twice before you give up the strength that we have in the backbone of
IAS that exists in Miami..... Think of the Fairchild recognition as the home
of the annual Aroid Show, think of the many folk who have been the strength
for holding IAS together over these many years. If nothing else, have
gratitude for all they have done to make IAS what it is today because I can
assure you, without them, there would not have been nor would there be
today, the organization we have this day!

Those of us who have been to many shows have watched the dedicated cadre of
energetic folks haul huge pots of fantastically grown aroids to Fairchild to
put into the show and for display. Where else are you going to find such
dedication? Denis Rotolante and now his son grow and share with us their
wonderful show plants and then the newest of the aroid plants around for
sale. Ron Weeks hauls stuff from the many in the area who need help getting
plants to the show. I wish I could tell you how much these folks do to make
the show such a success and then he hauls his own plants to the show, say
anything about getting it all home after the show.

I guess my suggestion is to go slow in dismantling the show in Miami because
I think you would find that you lose far more than you gain. Perhaps have
satellite smaller shows in other areas in addition or become an adjunct to
some other show in individual areas but if you want to eliminate the show in
Miami, you are literally giving away the backbone of IAS both financially
and strength wise. Botanically Dr Croat and other botanists are there but
without your backbone that binds the financial and dedication to the
society, I think you will lose far more than you will gain. Once the show is
not there, Fairchild will fill in the dates for the show with something else
eliminating the connection to IAS. Without a place for the show, down the
drain the Miami show goes. You either hold onto what we have, or you let the
whole thing go................ It is easy to say have it every other year or
some other yearly configuration, but you will find that one will not fly.

Words are easy........ doing is something else. We all know how difficult it
is to get people to do. Miami has a track record that I do not think you
will ever be able to duplicate anywhere else. Continuity holds things
together and roaming divides even though it provides opportunities for some
to come into the realm who might not have been able to in the past.

I suggest this issue be thought-out better before jumping to the easy
solution, move, change, and we will have it all no matter what we do because
in my opinion, you will find that in the short and long run, you will lose
far more than you could possibly gain.


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