The details have yet to be worked out, but organizers of CropSphere in Saskatoon say the conference is going to be joining the coinciding Western Canadian Crop Production Show at Prairieland Park in 2017.
While both events are part of the annual Crop Week in early January, CropSphere — with its speaker sessions and annual meetings for six provincial commodity groups — has been held downtown at TCU Place since 2014. Crop Production Show — the trade show component of Crop Week — generally draws larger crowds at Prairieland Park on the south side of the city. Several smaller commodity organizations also hold their annual meetings at the Saskatoon Inn near the airport.
“We’ve really wanted to be able to get CropSphere and all of our AGMs and the sessions out at Prairieland Park. Obviously a lot of growers attend that event and we want to be able to match up in terms of locations,” said Carl Potts, CropSphere spokesperson and executive director of Saskatchewan Pulse Growers, earlier this week. “We’re quite excited about the move. We think it will make it easier for growers to get in on the sessions they want to attend and reduce the requirement to register in multiple places.”
With space already at a premium at Prairieland, it’s not yet clear where or how CropSphere will fit into the facility. Potts said they’re still planning a similar two-day format with the commodity group AGMs held the day before.
“The number of sessions and slots that we’d have available would be about the same or a little bit more in terms of concurrent session space…as we have this year,” he said.
There’s been talk about an expansion at Prairieland Park, but no official announcements have been made, so any potential new space would not be ready for next year. “More meeting room space obviously would allow us to do more there and bring more groups in together for CropSphere,” noted Potts.