46th MSC Annual Meeting

46th Annual Meeting
Marriott Renaissance Hotel
Nashville, Tennessee
September 19-21, 2017

Everyone Is Welcomed To Participate!

Mark your calendars to join the Mulch & Soil Council in “The Music City” – Nashville, TN, on September 19-21, 2017.

Downtown Nashville is the hub of the entertainment that defines Music City. Within mere city blocks, visitors can experience world-class art at the Frist Center for Visual Arts, catch a great Broadway play at the amazing Tennessee Performing Arts Center (TPAC), see world-class concerts and events at the Bridgestone Arena, and take part in Nashville's real life adventure game, The Escape Game.

Within walking distance is the legendary Ryman Auditorium regarded as the “Mother Church of Country Music.” The Ryman is a National Historic Landmark renown for its exceptional acoustics that has hosted musicians from Chris Isaak and James Brown to Patsy Cline and John Legend, as well as current and rising stars of all musical genres.

Wash it all down while enjoying some of the world’s greatest live music – offered free 24/7/365 – at one of the city’s many honky-tonks that line famous Broadway, including Tootsie's, Robert’s Western World, The Stage, and Layla’s Bluegrass Inn.

Just a couple blocks from the music on Broadway is one of Nashville's most vibrant art communities located on 5th Avenue of the Arts. This is the location of several art galleries including The Arts Company, The Rymer Gallery, and Tinney Contemporary. Each one offers a unique experience and showcases multiple art exhibits throughout the year featuring both local and international artists. Each month, everyone is invited to participate in the Tennessee State Museum. Enjoy seeing art through the ages from the early prehistoric to presidential portraits preserved and displayed for you. Also, the museum offers more than 60,000 square feet of permanent exhibits and a 10,000 square foot changing exhibition hall. The exhibits allow guests to travel through time and witness the Prehistoric Frontier, Age of Jackson, Antebellum South, Civil War, and the Reconstruction eras at this wonderful Nashville museum.Get your caffeine fix at Dunn Bros. Coffee or Frothy Monkey Nashville Downtown. Dunn Bros. Coffee offers a great coffeehouse atmosphere with freshroasted coffee, sandwiches, soups, salads, and pastries. Frothy Monkey Nashville Downtown is a neighborhood restaurant and café offering a diverse menu including breakfast, lunch, and dinner. They pride themselves on the service of outstanding coffee, espresso drinks, and house-made teas and beverages.

If you’re looking for authentic Southern comfort food while taking it all in, check out Puckett’s Grocery & Restaurant, which offers a side of great live music in the evenings, or Jack’s Bar-B-Que for the best-tasting barbeque this side of the Mississippi. Morton’s The Steakhouse serves only the finest quality foods, featuring USDA primeaged beef, fresh fish and seafood, handpicked produce, delicious appetizers, and elegant desserts.

Check out Nashville’s elegant hot spot, Merchants, a former hotel. When you walk through the building you can see the vestiges of the original hotel rooms with fireplaces. The downstairs serves bistro food while the upstairs is a more formal fare. One of the city’s most elegant restaurants is The Capitol Grille inside Nashville’s plush fivestar Hermitage Hotel. The Capitol Grille reinvents Southern gourmet cuisine using the freshest regional ingredients. Finally, get ready for Jeff Ruby's Steakhouse, which plans to open this winter. Jeff Ruby's Steakhouse has earned extraordinary national reputation for delivering an impeccable dining experience. They serve award-winning U.S.D.A. prime steaks, seafood, and noteworthy chef driven cuisine.

2016 Program Review

Wednesday, October 5

1:30p-2:30p The Crow Political Report – MSC Legislative Rep David Crow gave his annual political report enumerating the complexities of the 2016 presidential elections. His conclusion for October was: Too Close to Call. An audio recording of David’s presentation is available in the members’ area of the MSC website.
2:30p-3:00p Break
3:00p-4:00p How To Avoid Legal Hot Water In Your Business – Ed Harold of Fisher & Phillips, LLC, in New Orleans presented a fascinating review of employer hiring, minimum wage, overtime regulations and other personnel management issues that impact all employers. Since the meeting, several members reported they have implemented recommendations and company policy changes when they returned home from the meeting. Ed’s slide show and an audio recording of the session are available in the members’ area of the MSC website.
4:00p-4:15p Break
4:15p-5:30p Annual Business Meeting – The next session was the MSC Annual Membership Meeting where participants heard reports from the President, Treasurer, committees and executive director. Members also re-elected Council Directors Kethryn Louis (Sun Gro Horticulture), Rick Mahoney (Garick, LLC), Scott Salmon (Oldcastle Lawn & Garden), and John Wohler (The Scotts Miracle-Gro Company) to additional 3 year terms on the Board of Directors
6:00p-7:30p Affiliate Reception – The day concluded with the annual Affiliate Member reception and displays which was generously Sponsored by AgriCoatings.

Thursday, October 6

8:00a-9:00a Exciting New Web Ideas "On A Budget" – MSC Membership Director Shelli Crockett led our Thursday program with an excellent presentation on Exciting New Web Ideas “On A Budget”. Shelli reviewed how MSC prepared and executed a massive and mobile-device-compatible revision of the Council’s website over a 4-month period using new technologies and readily available templates and plug-ins for less than $8,000 total cost. Once again several members reported they found solutions for their companies they would implement upon returning from the meeting. Shelli’s slide show and an audio recording of the session are available in the members’ area of the MSC website.
9:00a-9:30a Break
9:30a-10:30a Drone Solutions And 3-D Mapping For Inventory Control was our next session presented by Lauren Elmore of Firmatek in San Antonio. Lauren focused on the various methods for mapping inventory piles and how drone technology can reduce the process from weeks or months to mere hours. She also reviewed various systems industry is using to offer drone solutions from do-it-for-you to do-it-yourself technologies. Lauren’s slide show and an audio recording of the session are available in the members’ area of the MSC website.
10:30a-11:00a Break
11:00a-12:00p Succession Planning For Family Businesses – Next was a very useful presentation on succession planning for businesses presented by Wayne Bailey and John Crockenberg of Wells Fargo Financial Advisors. Topics ranged from protecting assets to funding buy-sell agreements and the pitfalls and hazards to avoid in your planning and agreements. An audio recording of the session is available in the members’ area of the MSC website.
12:00p-1:30p Keynote Luncheon: Lawn And Garden Retail Trends – The highlight of our meeting was an eye-opening keynote presentation by Steve Jansen of Four Seasons Consulting in Woodstock, GA. Steve used his more than 30 years experience in mass merchandising to explain how changes in retail marketing are impacting the buyer/seller paradigm and what companies need to do (and not do) to position themselves for more sales through major market makers and mass merchants. Many participants commented that this presentation was worth the entire trip to New Orleans, and it was made possible through the generous sponsor support of BASF. An audio recording of the session is available in the members’ area of the MSC website.
1:30p-2:00p Break
2:00p-4:30p What's New In Our Industry: Our final session for the day was a series of presentations on new products, equipment and services offered by industry companies. The first presentation was by BASF on colorant technology followed by Beumer, Hamer-Fischbein and PremierTech discussing packaging equipment and other related technologies. One audio recording is available in the members’ area of the MSC website for the entire session plus 4 slide shows for this program event.
4:45p-6:15p Presidents Reception – Our closing event for the meeting was the President’s Reception where participants recapped the bounty of information presented at the meeting and said goodbye to old and new friends before returning home. The reception was generously sponsored by our Silver meeting supporters.

Provide Industry Education & Training

Hotel Information

Marriott Renaissance Hotel
Nashville, Tennessee
September 19-21, 2017

Explore music city from our downtown Nashville hotel.

Discover the country music capital of the world while staying at the Renaissance Nashville Hotel. Situated in the heart of the business district, this downtown Nashville hotel allows for maximum exploration. Walking distance to Music City Center and attractions like Bridgestone Arena, Nissan Stadium (formerly LP Field), B.B. King's Blues Club, Country Music Hall of Fame, Ryman Auditorium and the Historic Second Avenue District. Guests can enjoy our 24-hour fitness center, indoor pool and a variety of delicious dining options inside our Nashville hotel. Try The Bridge if you're craving an American classic, or dine at Commerce Street Grille for southern favorites. As one of the premier hotels in downtown Nashville, we offer over 70,000 square feet of flexible meeting space and access to exceptional onsite catering. Setting the standard for sophisticated hospitality, our downtown Nashville hotel is redefining what it means to travel comfortably.

A special block of rooms has been set-aside for MSC meeting participants. The preferred guest rate for MSC members is: $222 (+tax)/night. The deadline for discounted room rates 
and space availability is when the block is filled or August 20, 2017 - WHICHEVER COMES FIRST.

More information about the Nashville Marriott Renaissance Hotel is available at: http://marriott.com/hotels/travel/bnash-renaissance-nashville-hotel/

Information to make a hotel reservation for our meeting will be provided as soon as the room block is officially open. Please check our site for updates.

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