Download the complete schedule by clicking HERE.


7:00 a.m.–6:30 p.m.        


Sponsored by ShoWorks

Location: Convention Center, Main Entrance, Street Level


8:30 a.m.–9:00 a.m.        

Convention Blast Off!

Get excited for the 2018 IAFE Convention with help from the US national anthem and your 2018 IAFE Chair of the Board, Rick Vymlatil, CFE!

Location: Stars at Night Ballroom


9:15 a.m.–10:00 a.m.      

Zone Meetings

Don’t know which Zone your fair is located in? Maps will be available, or visit

                                                Zone 1: Room 302 B&C

                                                Zone 2: Room 221 A

                                                Zone 3: Room 221 D

                                                Zone 4: Room 225 B&C

                                                Zone 5: Room 301 B&C

                                                Zone 6: Room 221 B&C

                                                Zone 7: Room 225 A

                                                Zone 8: Room 225 D


10:00 a.m.–12:30 p.m.    

Ed Shed

Visit the Ed Shed for many educational opportunities, including

Campfire Theater, Legend-Led Theater, Power Talk Theater, Training Corral, and view entries from the 2018 IAFE contests. Be sure to pick up your USB drive (provided by the North Carolina State Fair) featuring award winning entries, and take part in the many interactive components.

Location: Stars at Night Ballroom


10:15 a.m.–10:30 p.m.    

Power Talk: IT Secutiry – Fear the Right Things (and Fix Them)

Join one of AppRiver’s Strategic Account Executives as he talks about why we might be worrying too much about the wrong IT security threats … and not enough about the right ones. He’s seen a lot in his 10 years with the email and web security firm, but he also believes fear should drive positive action, especially in business. Listen as he explains what companies can and should do to stay safe in an increasingly dangerous digital world.   

Presented by Jeff Willard (AppRiver)

Location: Stars at Night Ballroom – Ed Shed

                Etix Power Talk Theater


10:15 a.m.–11:00 a.m.     Workshops – all attendees welcome!



Tech Pavilion: Create Lasting Impressions with Integrated Websites & Ticketing – Introductory

A good first impression goes a long way! Research shows customers decide if they’re going to have a good time at your fair within a few seconds of exposure to your brand. Most of the time, those moments aren’t even at your gate – they’re on your website! Customers pull out their mobile devices to learn about your event long before they arrive and when you sell tickets online, they get out their wallets early too. So how do you put your best foot forward and get more customers to boldly buy in advance? At Saffire, we can say with confidence we have found the secret sauce to good first impressions and increasing online sales. Saffire clients using our integrated websites & ticketing repeatedly see increased revenue. Want to be in the know on how and why? Join us for a Saffire product showcase you won’t want to miss! We’ll hold a drawing for an iPad Mini – which, by the way, is all you need to sell & scan tickets with Saffire at your box office! Whether you’ve thought about creating a lasting impression with your website & ticketing for a while, or you’re just beginning to consider the exciting possibilities, you won’t be disappointed!

Presented by Aaron Pederson & Jeremy Emerson (Saffire

Location: Saffire Tech Pavilion Room 302A


Creating Tomorrow’s Traditions: Developing the Board’s Future Vision - Advanced

To be effective in their role requires recognition that “board leadership” extends way beyond involvement in planning and executing next year’s fair. This workshop delivers concepts and tangible examples of how boards can lead their organizations by starting not with strategic planning, but strategic visioning. Demonstrating how boards can define organizational success in terms of outcomes, not activities, governance consultant Bill Charney will also provide six key criteria to help the board determine your organization’s “ends.”

Presented by Bill Charney (Charney Associates)

Location: Room 221D


Active Assailant Situations - Intermediate

Walk away from this session with detailed information on how to develop active assailant plans, conduct training, and where to go to access. DHS active threat awareness products, tools, and resources. This presentation will focus on recent attacks, responses, and mitigation strategies. Department of Homeland Security officials from Region 6 (Texas, Oklahoma, Louisiana, Arkansas, and New Mexico) will also be set up in the Ed Shed for more detailed one-on-one discussions.

Presented by Mike Dailey (Department of Homeland Security)

Location: Room 225 B&C


Introduction to Grant Writing: Funding Sources, Proposal Guidelines, and Best Practices –Introductory

This workshop will take a look at the foundational steps to acquiring funding, starting with defining your project, identifying funding sources, and finding fiscal sponsorship; moving into the practical’s of how to identify and keep track of proposal guidelines and submission guidelines; and then determining personnel needs and updating your grant timeline. Participants will also be given an overview of the process of writing the grant proposal, which includes the narrative, the budget, supporting materials, and of course, following up with the granting organization.

Presented by Bridget Rountree (Animal Cracker Conspiracy

Location: Room 301 B&C


Dealing with THAT Smell in Your Livestock Facilities

You know it when it hits your nose the minute you walk into the barn or arena – ammonia. Did you know it might also cause illness in both show animals and in people? Find out the details on how microbial products can eliminate ammonia and reduce solids. Bio S.I. Technology products can successfully eliminate the cause of ammonia, rather than merely treating the symptoms.

Presented by Brandon Boughen, M.Ag (Bio S.I. Technology)

Location: Stars at Night Ballroom – Ed Shed

                Bio S.I. Training Corral


Legend-Led: AgVocating

Soak up knowledge from industry legends and have a chance to ask them questions. This discussion-based session is a great opportunity to meet those established individuals you’ve been watching throughout the years.

Presented by Barney Cosner, CFE (Fremont County Fair, WY) and Donna Woolam, CFE (Eastern States Exposition, MA)

Location: Stars at Night Ballroom – Ed Shed

                Etix Legend-Led Theater


Grand Champion Exhibits…From How to WOW! – Advanced

Bring your desire to inspire as we explore how competitive exhibits showcase the arts, culinary, and horticulture exhibitors. Whether your fair is small or large, we will all benefit from brainstorming ideas and contests for a "Lasting Impression" at your fair.

Presented by jill Albanese, CFE (Wisconsin State Fair) and Eileen Walsh Grzenia (Walworth County Fair, WI)

Location: Room 221 A


Millennials, Boomers, Traditionalists, Oh My!

One unique aspect of the Fair Industry is the broad age range that we work with. From our Jr. Fairs Boards and 4-H, to the influx of Traditionalists that we see on Seniors Day, this session will serve as a crash course in the "need to know" traits of Millennials, Boomers, & Traditionalists, Oh My! Join us as we explore how we can make a good “First Impression” at our fairs and events across multiple generations.

Panelists to include Garrett McCormick (State Fair of West Virginia); George Stanchfield (Fond du Lac County Fair, WI); and Vicki Chouris, CFE (South Florida Fair & Palm Beach County Expositions)

Presented by the IAFE Young Professionals Initiative (YPI)

Location: Room 221 B&C


Let Us Help You Navigate the New Non-Profit Reporting Standards - Advanced

The largest changes in over 20 years for non-profit financial reporting are now in effect. There’s no reason to be intimidated, though; this workshop will walk you through the changes and might even help you use them to your advantage. See how the State Fair of Texas has, and is, making the changes and using them as a marketing tool in their community. You will also learn how to better analyze and evaluate your data to improve your fair.

Presented by Jaime Navarro (State Fair of Texas) and Neely Duncan, CPA, CFE, FCPA & Emily George, CPA (BKD, LLP)

Location: Room 225 A


10:15 a.m.–11:00 a.m.    

Ticketing Networking Session

Join these moderated sessions with generalized topics by networking with others and taking part in open discussion. You are sure to walk away with new and fresh ideas to take home to your fair!

Moderated by David Phelps (San Antonio Livestock Exposition, Inc., TX) and Dennis Scanlon (Etix)

Location: Room 220


10:15 a.m.–11:45 a.m.    

StoryGrip Workshop – Part One - Introductory

In an environment where you don’t stand a chance to win anybody’s attention without some magic, a good story might save you and your brand from oblivion. With more media channels for engagement and greater control over what consumers pay attention to, marketing and communications teams have scrambled to make their content more captivating and stories represent a natural evolution. Join professional journalist, communications pro, essayist, and humorist Dan Bennett as he dives deep into best practices in organizational and human-impact storytelling.

Registration is necessary to attend Part II of this workshop on either Tuesday or Wednesday. Seating is limited. The registration fee is $15.

Presented by Dan Bennett (StoryGrip)

Location: Room 302 B &C

10:35 p.m.–10:50 p.m.     

Campfire: Quick & Fun Social Media Marketing Tips

Presented by Katy Stenerson (Red River Valley Fair Assoc., ND)

Location: Stars at Night Ballroom – Ed Shed

                Magic Money Campfire Theater


10:40 a.m.-10:55 a.m.     

Power Talk: How Do You Measure Success at Your Fair?

Attendance? Revenue? Customer Satisfaction? Something else? We all look at it a little differently. A Net Promoter Score (NPS) is something new to consider, and it’s based on one simple question. It’s easy to administer and even easier to understand, but the results may change the way you measure success at your Fair.

Presented by Ray Allison (Indiana State Fair)

Location: Stars at Night Ballroom – Ed Shed

                Etix Power Talk Theater

10:55 p.m.–11:10 p.m.     

Campfire: Who is FRED? Come Find Out!

Presented by Kathy Allen (South Carolina State Fair)

Location: Stars at Night Ballroom – Ed Shed

                Magic Money Campfire Theater


11:00 a.m.–12:15 p.m.    

Lunch & Learn

Enjoy your lunch with people with similar interests. This is another opportunity to network and steal ideas from fair industry colleagues. The lunch ticket is required to partake in the meal, but everyone is welcome to participate in the conversations. Lunch tickets are only available prior to the convention and cannot be purchased on site.

Sponsored by Allied Specialty Insurance

Location: Stars at Night Ballroom


11:05 a.m.-11:20 a.m.     

Power Talk: Media Streamlining Show Prep Operations

Get the tools to simplify your entry information and processing paperwork into a way that makes your job easier from a management perspective. Also, learn how to find Ag-focused interns and seasonal help.

Presented by Erin Dorsey (National Western Stock Show, CO)

Location: Stars at Night Ballroom – Ed Shed

                Etix Power Talk Theater


12:15 p.m.                      

Doors Open for General Session

Location: Lila Cockrell Theatre


12:45 p.m.–2:00 p.m.      

Monday General Session

You won’t want to miss the first general session of the 2018 IAFE Convention! This session will include the presentation of the State & Provincial Association of Fairs’ Executive of the Year, Rising Star Award (sponsored by Staats), Heritage Awards (sponsored by Haas & Wilkerson Insurance) and IAFE Hall of Fame. Hear from the inspiring keynote speaker Clint Swindall, Verbalocity, Inc. (sponsored by Haas & Wilkerson Insurance).

Location: Lila Cockrell Theatre


2:00 p.m.                       

Tell Me Something Good Champagne Toast

Receive a ticket for champagne at the general session and meet in the convention center foyer to toast to something good! Sponsored by Wade Shows.

Location: Convention Center Foyer


2:00 p.m.–5:30 p.m.        

IAFE Trade Show

Walk through the aisles of nearly 300 exhibitors waiting to serve you and your fair. Find a partner in all things fair, including insurance, entertainment, website/ticketing, and more! When you need to take a break, enjoy a free beer – compliments of Talley Amusements – in the IAFE Education Foundation Lounge.

Location: Exhibit Hall 1


2:30 p.m.–5:15 p.m.        

Beyond the Booth Showcases

Location: Exhibit Hall 1



Branson, Missouri’s Mike Walker

2:30 p.m. – 2:45 p.m. (Showcase Area 1)

Presented by Creative Community Promotions, LLC


Louie Foxx

2:45 p.m.-3:00 p.m. (Showcase Area 2)

Presented by That’s Entertainment International



3:15 p.m.-3:30 p.m. (Showcase Area 1)


The One Man Band, Marc Dobson

3:30 p.m.-3:45 p.m. (Showcase Area 2)


The Rock Bottom Boys

4:00 p.m.-4:15 p.m. (Showcase Area 1)

Presented by The Source Management Group


BOOM! Percussion Entertainment

4:15 p.m.-4:30 p.m. (Showcase Area 2)

Presented by Star Attractions


Sesame Street Live – “C is for Celebration”

4:45 p.m.-5:00 p.m. (Showcase Area 1)


The Everly Set

5:00 p.m.-5:15 p.m. (Showcase Area 2)

Presented by Harmony Artists


3:00 p.m.–4:30 p.m.        

Young Professionals Initiative (YPI) General Meeting & Happy Hour

Are you 40 or younger? Join the YPI for an afternoon of networking and fun for your chance to learn about their involvement within the industry. Sponsored by Haas and Wilkerson Insurance.

Location: Room 220


3:30 p.m.–4:30 p.m.          

2018 & 2019 IAFE Group/Committee Chairs Meeting

If you were a committee chair in 2018, or will be in 2019, this meeting is for you!

Location: Room 303A


5:45 p.m.–6:45 p.m.          

Happy Hour – Chairs’ Welcome to Texas

At the end of a jam-packed day of networking and education, come together with other attendees at the happy hour before heading out to dinner. Includes drinks, snacks, and entertainment by musical artist Brandon Lay (presented by Dale Morris & Associates). 

Presented by Kaliff Insurance 

Location: Stars at Night Ballroom, 2&3


6:45 p.m.–8:45 p.m.          

NALSRMA Meeting & Reception

For the North American Livestock Show & Rodeo Managers Association


 Location: Room 225A

Institute of Fair Management Course* = Unless otherwise stated, all IFM courses are open to all attendees, whether enrolled in the Institute or not. These courses are great educational opportunities you will want to take advantage of!

Copyright The International Association of Fairs and Expositions. All rights reserved.