Event Recap: Breaking Records
Spray Foam Magazine – This year’s SprayFoam 2023 Convention & Expo broke all records for attendance and enthusiasm, with total numbers of the Daytona Beach convention hitting 1853 - nearly 25% more than any year in the show’s more than 30-year history. The SPFA thanks all who attended the wildly successful event!
The event started with pre-convention days made up of onsite certification courses, written exams and field exams, along with co-located trainings and seminars including the first-ever Building Science Fundamentals Seminar led by industry legend Dr. Joe Lstiburek, B.A.Sc., M.Eng., Ph.D., P.Eng, of Principal Building Science Corporation.
“The pre-convention seminars and certifications are what kick off the show each year,” says Bonnie Strickler, current SPFA president and owner of Puff, Inc., the Charlottesville, Virginia-based spray foam and coatings contractor. “Participation in professional certification written and field exams was impressive this year. We had 146 completed PCP written exams, which means more and more contractors understand why certification is an important demonstration of professionalism in our industry.”
New this year was the Field Exam Experience, the brainchild of Cole Fletcher, senior technical representative for Creative Polymer Solutions. “Participants of the Field Exam Experience were taken through each field exam station to learn about what is required to pass and to help calm their nerves about taking the exam. We got great feedback on it and picked up some new entrants into the exams.” A record number of 83 installers participated in the PCP field exams in 2023.
Hundreds also ate, imbibed and watched the Kansas City Chiefs beat the Philadelphia Eagles at The Big Game Party held at the Daytona Grande Oceanfront Resort on Super Bowl Sunday. “The turnout at the watch party was impressive,” adds Strickler.
Attendees of one of the more than 45 educational sessions listen intently.
This year’s keynote speaker, Marcus Sheridan, an internationally recognized digital marketing and sales expert led a dynamic session on how to attract customers and employees. He made a powerful statement to attendees that just about summed up his entire session. “If you’re basing your strategy on what your competitors are doing, rather than what the marketplace wants, you’re doing it wrong.”
Like always, the convention hosted the 17th Annual National Industry Excellence Awards. This year Concrete Lifting was introduced as an all-new award category. The SPFA congratulates Polyseal Insulation of Palmer, Alaska, the first-ever winner of the award for its outstanding Port of Whittier Dolphin Cell Repair project.
Volunteers helping out at the Field Exams.
Gary Harvey, project manager with Wedge Roofing, the Petaluma, California-based contractor and winner in two award categories this year, Elastomeric Roof Coatings and Roof SPF Less than 40,000 Square Feet, shared why he feels the awards give contractors an edge.
“We always distinguish ourselves from our competition by showing customers our credentials and qualifications and by displaying the quality of our work,” he says. “But to have an independent panel of experts also say the same thing, by recognizing and awarding these industry accolades, always adds buckets of credibility to our claims.”
Adding to the convention’s success, this year’s 45 educational breakout sessions and expo hall were widely attended and well received.
“This was my second time attending the convention and I noticed a lot more people this time in the expo hall, classes and field exams,” says Karen Wikert, owner of Mrs. Spray Foam in Grovetown, Georgia. “The variety of educational sessions was fantastic and the sheer number of people in Daytona really proves how much our industry is growing. It’s also exciting to see a lot more younger people and women participating.”
Simon Baker, global president of Huntsman Building Solutions, this year’s Platinum Sponsor concurs.
“The energy of this year’s SprayFoam Convention was evident and we definitely experienced it in the crowds that we hosted in our booth, as well as at each of our team’s educational sessions,” he says. “It’s exciting to see so many contractors in the industry focused on learning, networking and growing their businesses. Spray foam is undoubtedly a thriving industry and we are excited to be part of its future."
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