Wednesday, 7/22/2015 - Friday, 7/24/2015
Days Inn Hotel & Conference Center
Bob Purvis and Pete Scott have been working hard to line up interesting and informative speakers. Here are a few; Liza Greenman, Fruit Exploring for Millennials; Nick Howard, Fruit Breeding for the Backyard Grower; Jim Riddle, owner and operator of Blue Fruit Farm speaking on culture and marketing of blueberries, elderberries, blackcurrant and aronia; Dan Busey, Saving Heirloom Seeds; Dell Christianson, Foliar Nutrition for Fruit Trees; Jacquelyn Kuehn, The Future of NAFEX; Harry Hoch, owner Hoch Orchards, Operating a Farm Fruit Market; Ron Dickie, Cultivating and Marketing Strawberries; Paul Bingham, Accessing the ARS (USDA) Germplasm Repository and Obtaining Materials and Designing Edible Landscapes; Brian Nelson, Spotted Wing Drosophila; Oriana Kruszewski, Asian Pears for the Upper Midwest; Bob Purvis, Growing Apricots in the Cold North.
Contact Bob Purvis or Pete Scott to make arrangements for your presentation. Better hurry as the roster is nearly full and there may be some openings due to cancellations. If we have extra presentations we may continue at 7:00 PM. The auction is also planned for Thursday evening.
The Friday bus tour presently has 5 stops scheduled. This will be a full, interesting day.
We began the day with a visit to Ron’s Barry Farm in Minnesota operated by Ron and Peggy Dickie where they cultivate strawberries and asparagus.
Another stop is the Blue Fruit Farm where they have 4 acres of aronia, blackcurrant, blueberry and elderberries. Owner Jim Riddle will also address us during the technical sessions.
Lunch is planned for the Hoch Apple Orchard catered by the Harry Hoch family who operate the orchard, farm market and kitchen. Below is the aerial view.
After lunch we travel to Ecker’s Apple Orchard where they grow Cortland and Honey Crisp and sell caramel apples and apple pie in their farm market.
We plan to also visit Blue House Blueberries, primarily a you pick operation. Owner Steve Nice will give us a tour of their orchard where they cultivate and market blueberries, blue ice plums, honeyberry (haskap) and aronia.
We will return at 5 PM for a short rest before the start of the banquet and wine tasting. Have a fruit wine that you are proud of? Bring a few bottles to impress fellow members. Do you have favorite a wine made by a local winery, ask them to donate a few bottles for the publicity. There will also be a cash bar prior to the banquet. Our scheduled speaker is Steven Murray who has traveled extensively in China, a very knowledgeable young man well-versed on foreign fruits. At last year’s annual meeting Steven made a short presentation of fruits that he observed and photographed. He has promised to give more details about many of the interesting fruits. Following the banquet will be the annual business meeting and election of officers.
A car caravan trip to Seed Savers Exchange near Decorah, Iowa is being planned for Saturday, July 25.
The conference center has bent the rules for us not only in allowing wine tasting before the banquet they are also going to allow us to serve homemade cookies that include fruit and nuts at Thursdays coffee breaks. We will also have a limited a number of pastries at the breaks from the Inn’s catering service.
While you’re in LaCrosse Wisconsin you can also plan to attend the Northern Nut Growers Annual Meeting July 26 through 28. See their website, nutgrowing.org.
We have a block of 60 rooms at Days Inn Convention Center, LaCrosse Wisconsin, reserved for the July annual meeting. To guarantee room availability please make reservations before June 16 when the block will be released. Also, to help the committee ordering buss service, banquet meals, etc. we need to know how many will be attending so please send us your meeting registration. For complete meeting information and a downloadable registration form which includes motel reservation information click on this link: http://www.nafex.org/meeting.php
Your 2015 annual meeting committee,
Jerry Lehman, Bob Purvis, Peter Scott