It was definitely a first for the National Golf Course Owner’s Association of Canada this past week as, for the first time in two decades, their annual conference and trade show was held virtually.
Like many other organizations adapting to a world-wide pandemic, an electronic-based event was the most viable solution for the NGCOA Canada. They Ottawa-based association deemed their Golf Business Canada Conference & Trade Show a success in a release issued today.
It comes on the heels of an extraordinary year where golf facilities went from locked down to one of the busiest businesses in the country with golf being among the few allowable sports.
“We pivoted to virtual for this year’s conference because during these challenging times, members look to their Association, the NGOCA Canada, for guidance and support,” said Jeff Calderwood, NGCOA Canada CEO and Conference Chair. “NGCOA Canada has been working tirelessly to provide all kinds of resources for members to use to help them navigate through some unprecedented circumstances. Ensuring our conference went ahead and delivered tools and resources to take our members into the 2021 golf season was a priority for us this year.”
The event featured three days of activities and because of the remote nature, allowed and welcomed more participants than ever.
NGCOA Canada shares that the Golf Business Canada Conference & Trade Show featured 26 breakout sessions, a keynote speech focusing on strategy in a world of disruption, a State of the Industry Town Hall panel discussion on COVID-19s impact on golf in 2020, an Operational Town Hall featuring operators across the country and how they pivoted from normal to COVID-Ready and the successes they will continue in 2021, an Exhibit Hall showcasing 55+ industry suppliers, and lots of networking virtual style.
“Our virtual conference provided an opportunity for those across the golf industry, not just in Canada, but the US and Europe; to listen to educational speakers covering a range of business trends and best practices during this unprecedented time, to connect with each other face-to-face albeit in a completely new way, and to forge those connections our event is known for.” said Nathalie Lavallée, NGCOA Canada COO and lead conference organizer. “The tremendous positive feedback we have received throughout the event further validates our decision to move into the virtual space for this year’s event.”
Support for the event was provided by many Premier conference sponsors including: Club Car, entegra Procurement Services, Moneris, Moosehead Breweries, Mulligan International, Rain Bird, Tee-On Golf Systems and supporting sponsors: Coca-Cola Refreshments Canada, Deluxe Canada, Fireball Whisky, Grand & Toy, Nestle Professional, and PepsiCo.