Download the complete schedule by clicking HERE.


7:30 a.m.–5:00 p.m.              


Sponsored by ShoWorks

Location: Convention Center, Main Entrance, Street Level


8:00 a.m.                        

Doors Open for General Session

Location: Lila Cockrell Theatre


8:30 a.m.–10:00 a.m.        

Tuesday General Session

This general session is packed full of excitement as you watch the presentation of the competitive exhibits (sponsored by North American Midway Entertainment) and agriculture awards (sponsored by ShoWorks). You won’t want to miss the keynote speaker during this session, Dr. Temple Grandin (sponsored by Protect The Harvest)!

Location: Lila Cockrell Theatre


10:15 a.m.–2:00 p.m.      

The 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


10:30 a.m.                            

IAFE Associates Board Selection Credentialing Meeting & IAFE Update

All IAFE associate members welcome. Associate memberships are included in one of four categories. The categories are: Entertainment; Commercial Exhibits and Concessions; Carnival/Ride Owners/Ride Manufacturers; and Suppliers and Services. Each associate membership shall be entitled to cast one vote for a nominee for 2019 Associate Director. The name of the person who is not a member of the Carnivals/Ride Owners/Ride Manufacturers category who receives the most votes shall be submitted to the IAFE Nominating Committee for consideration for the nominating report during the business meeting on Wednesday morning.

Location:  Room 225A

10:30 a.m.-10:45 a.m.     

Power Talk: USDA Update

Hear updates from USDA and the effects it might have on your fair.

Presented by Michael Pruitt (USDA Animal & Plant Health Inspection Service – Veterinary Services)

Location: Stars at Night Ballroom – Ed Shed

                Etix Power Talk Theater


10:30 a.m.–11:15 a.m.      

Campfire: Cashless Systems – The Evolution of Cashless, Automation, and Beyond

Michael Augins and Doug Clarke have spent their entire careers digitizing various industries focusing on automation, maximizing profits, and building deeper customer relationships. Inspired by the Disney Magic Band, they teamed up with lifetime concessionaire, Brett Enright, to create a fully automated cashless digital ticketing system. During this session they'll examine the past, present, and future of cashless operations in the events industry!

Presented by Doug Clarke & Michael Augins (Magic Money)

Location: Stars at Night Ballroom – Ed Shed

                Magic Money Campfire Theater


10:30 a.m.–11:15 a.m.      

Workshops – All Attendees Welcome



Tech Pavilion: The ‘Gram Cram - Introductory

If you don’t know what “The ‘Gram” is, this may be just the session for you! Instagram is one of the most popular social platforms for younger audiences, which makes it an ideal choice for fair marketers in addition to Facebook. Join us as we cover a couple of basics to launch beginners, but also dive deeper into the many ways & reasons Instagram is a great tool for promoting your fair!

Presented by Jodi Buresh, CFE (Saffire)

Location:  Saffire Tech Pavilion Room 302 A


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: Operations

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.

Moderated by Craig Rudland, CFE (North Dakota State Fair) and Brian Hudalla (Minnesota State Fair)

Location: Stars at Night Ballroom – Ed Shed

               Etix Legend-Led Theater


Transform Your Fair with Volunteer Power - Introductory

Learn how providing structure – such as the Five Elements of Volunteer Engagement – can propel your volunteer program to SUCCESS!

Presented by Stacy Starr & Janice Brewer (El Paso County Fair, CO)

Location: Room 221 A


What You Don’t Know Will Hurt You: The Legal/Fiduciary Duties of Board Members – Introductory

In today’s environment, more than ever before, it is integral that directors of nonprofit and public/governmental boards have a firm grasp of the legal duties incumbent upon them. Attendees of this workshop will gain a concise but strong foundational understanding of:

  • Why these are referred to as “duties” instead of “responsibilities”

  • An overview of the primary fiduciary duties

  • Eight steps to fulfilling the Duty of Care

  • The Business Judgment Rule

Presented by Bill Charney (Charney Associates)

Sponsored by Ron & Bev Burback’s Funtastic Traveling Shows

Location: Room 221 D


P&L and Your Event Calendar – Advanced

Discussion during this course will include the following: calendar management; booking criteria; rate models; event profit & loss; staffing options; profit centers; booking conflicts & how to deal with them; venue variances from an expense and staffing standpoint; and accommodating large, one-time events.

Moderated by Adam Heffron, CFE (Washington State Fair)

Panelists to include Jay Brower (Sublette County Fair, WY)and Garrett McCormick (State Fair of West Virginia)

Location Room 225 D


YQCA – Make it Part of Your Fair! - Introductory

Since YQCA (Youth for the Quality Care of Animals) launched in 2017, over 50,000 youths have been certified. Are these youths from your county or state? If not, come to this session to learn more about YQCA, see the site, and discover the most recent releases made earlier this fall. 

Presented by Dinah Peebles (National Pork Board)

Location: Room 301 B&C


10:30 a.m.–11:15 a.m.      

Foundations 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 Wendy Faulconer (Missouri State Fair Foundation) and Peter Cownie (Iowa State Fair Blue Ribbon Foundation)

Location: Room 220


10:30 a.m.–12:00 p.m.      

Keep Up With Today’s Information Technology  - Introductory

Institute of Fair Management Course* #106

This is a required for-credit course of the Institute of Fair Management.

All attendees are welcome, even if not enrolled in the Institute.

This course reviews the many aspects of this broad subject: a recent update on the use of technology; how fair websites have developed and a general review of the basics of a good site; maintaining databases and utilizing e-newsletters; general information on social media (this is not a marketing course, though); and recent developments in online ticketing, as well as other software resources for fair management. In addition, the course will provide information on developing an IT infrastructure on your fairgrounds.

Presented by John Johnson, Jr., CVFM (Hebron Harvest Fair, CT)

Location: Room 221 B&C


10:30 a.m.–12:00 p.m.    

StoryGrip Workshop – PART TWO – Intermediate

Learn to develop stories based on ideas that you generate from idea to creation. Implement the dynamics of stories that leave impressions to create lasting change. Employ the concepts of story creation and dissemination to move forward the story as a valuable and potent communications tool. This session will consist of hands-on storytelling writing, group sharing, and feedback, and is limited to 50 people. You must have participated in Part One on Monday to participate in Part Two.

 *Additional registration required! The registration fee is $15.

*If you are unable to attend this session, Part II will be repeated on Wednesday at 2:00 p.m.

Presented by Dan Bennett (StoryGrip)

Location: Room 302 B&C


10:30 a.m.–12:30 a.m.    

Enhancing the Concert/VIP Experience

Join us for our very own VIP experience at the IAFE Convention! This is an interactive brainstorm session providing everyone with concrete action items to take back to your fair, no matter the size. Enjoy a drink while discussing a few case studies and engaging with small groups about consumer VIP areas and special entertainment VIP promotions and the integration of sponsorships.

Presented by Maggie Ellison (Event Marketing Strategies, Inc.) and Lauri King, CFE (Big Fresno Fair, CA)

Sponsored by WME

Location: Room 225 B & C


10:55 a.m.–11:40 a.m.    

Power Talk: Sell More Tickets – Become an Event Life Cycle Marketing Master

Every event has a “life cycle” – an announcement, an on-sale, the event day, and more!  The best marketers know how to match the right marketing tools with the right message at the right time. Learn how to tap into specific audiences, generate buzz, and develop #FOMO (fear of missing out) to increase online sales earlier in your sales cycle.

Presented by Aaron Bare (Etix) and Alexa Colasurdo (Rockhouse Partners)

Location: Stars at Night Ballroom – Ed Shed

                Etix Power Talk Theater


11:15 a.m.–1:15 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 Deggeller Attractions

Location: Stars at Night Ballroom


11:45 a.m.–12:30 p.m.      

Workshops – more topics coming soon!



Tech Pavilion: Understanding Office 365 and the Security Considerations of Moving to the Cloud

Looking to integrate Office 365 into your business? You’re not alone. In fact, Office 365 is the most successful Microsoft service in history, but it’s also one of the most confusing. We know you have questions and we’re ready to help.                         

Presented by Jeff Willard (AppRiver)

Location: Saffire Tech Pavilion 302A


Know Your Fair Attendees

Your audience is at the center of your fair, event, exhibition, or facility. Learn how you can collect data and use analytics to gain insights to better understand, grow, segment, and engage your audience.

Presented by Omar Mawjee, Galina Kho & Jenna Mawjee (EventCorp Services)

Location: Stars at Night Ballroom – Ed Shed

                 Bio S.I. Training Corral


Legend-Led: Board Member Roles and Expectations

Soak up the 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.

Moderated by Cindy Hoye, CFE (Indiana State Fair) and Jerry Hammer, CFE (Minnesota State Fair)

Location: Stars at Night Ballroom – Ed Shed

                 Etix Legend-Led Theater


How Volunteers Can Become Your Best Fair Marketers  – Advanced

Through training, collaboration, and team leadership, your volunteer program can help you build your fair's financial possibilities through volunteer engagement to new and exciting levels.

Presented by Stacy Starr & Janic Brewer (El Paso County Fair, CO)

Location: Room 221 A


Minnesota Eats – A Local Foods Exhibit Created by Volunteers - Intermediate

Local food. Sustainability. Farm to Table. These buzz words are jargon for creating a food system that take people and the planet into consideration before, during, and after a meal. In 2014, volunteers in Minnesota decided to bring a new exhibit to the Minnesota State Fair that would teach fairgoers easy steps to reduce their impact on the environment when considering how and what to eat. Five years later, the Minnesota Eats Exhibit has engaged with hundreds of designers, architects, farmers, restaurant owners, chefs, and non-profits to facilitate an interactive experience during the 12 days of the Minnesota State Fair. Join The Common Table MN for a conversation about how the exhibit came together, and how its creators aspire to inspire six actions that anyone can take to improve their relationship with food.

Moderated by Michelle Butler (Minnesota State Fair)

Panelists to include Josh Bergeron, Sandy Wolfe Wood, and Anna Waugh (The Common Table Minnesota)

Location: Room 221 D


Success for Associates with Social Media

Discover which approached to social media work and which do not, and learn how to make your social media presence more attractive to buyers.

Moderated by Mark Sparks (Triangle Talent, LLC)

Panelists to include Alicia Shoults (Ohio State Fair) and Kevin Ridgeway (Lady Houdini Escape Show)

Location: Room 225 A


Promotions That Have a Positive Impact

We all have slow days at our fairs … let's talk about promotions that make a positive impact and are proven to work.          

Moderated by Kathy Ross (Ross Concessions)

Panelists to include Joshua Nicholson (Dr. Vegetable, Inc.); Kevin McGrath, Jr. (The Best Around); and AJ Ross (Ross Concessions).

Location: Room 301 B&C



11:45 a.m.–12:30 p.m.      

Finance & Human Resources 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 Matt Immel, CFE (Fond du Lac County Fair, WI) and Matt Wallsmith (South Florida Fair and Palm Beach County Expositions)

Location: Room 220


11:50 a.m.-12:05 p.m.               

Power Talk: Tips & Tools for Engagement in Your Community

Our fairs and festivals are definitely more than events for our local communities. We have a wonderful opportunity to impact our areas through our many resources to make a difference. This session is an opportunity to quickly think about the role that your event can play to serve as a catalyst and convener beyond the event.

Presented by Froswa’ Booker-Drew (State Fair of Texas)

Location: Stars at Night Ballroom – Ed Shed

                Etix Power Talk Theater


12:15 p.m.-12:30 p.m.     

Power Talk: Using Facebook Pixel to Measure the Success of Campaigns

The Alameda County Fair has been using Facebook Pixel code on their website to measure the success of ads, and they’ve been pleasantly surprised by the amount of ticket sales produced. An ad that cost just $400 sold $17,000 worth of tickets – a great ROI! Come learn more about this useful tool.                  

Presented by Angel Moore (Alameda County Agricultural Fair Association, CA)

Location: Stars at Night Ballroom – Ed Shed

               Etix Power Talk Theater


1:00 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


1:15 p.m.–2:00 p.m.          

2019 Programming Groups/Committee Table Meetings

Find your committee for a meeting. Not on a committee? Find a topic that interests you and join that group. We promise, it’s fun!

                                                Advertising and PR: Room 302 B&C

                                                Agriculture: Room 221 D

                                                Commercial Exhibits and Concessions: Room 225 A

                                                Competitive Exhibits: Campfire Sessions Area (Stars at Night)

                                                County Fairs: Legend-Led Area (Stars at Night)

                                                Entertainment: Power Talks Area (Stars at Night)

                                                Management Conference: Room 225 D

                                                Master Planning and Physical Plant Operations: Room 301 A

                                                Non-Fair Facility Usage: Training Corral Area (Stars at Night)

                                                Sponsorship: Room 301 B&C

                                                Website and Technology: Room 302 A


1:30 p.m.–5:00 p.m.        

Beyond the Booth Showcases

Location: Showcase Areas 1&2 - Exhibit Hall 1



Branson, Missouri’s Mike Walker

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

Presented by Creative Community Promotions, LLC


Matt Baker – Comedy Stunt Show

1:45 p.m.-2:00 p.m. (Showcase Area 2)

Presented by That’s Entertainment International


The Music City Quartet

2:15 p.m.-2:30 p.m. (Showcase Area 1)

Presented by Liz Gregory Talent


The Status Crowes Acoustic Jukebox

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


Hermanos Escamilla Trick Rope Show

3:00 p.m.-3:15 p.m. (Showcase Area 1)

Presented by Class Act Performing Artists & Speakers


Chicago Boyz

3:15 p.m.-3:30 p.m. (Showcase Area 2)

Presented by Star Attractions


Krendl the Illusionist

3:45 p.m.-4:00 p.m. (Showcase Area 1)


Sesame Street Live – “C is for Celebration”

4:00 p.m.-4:15 p.m. (Showcase Area 2)


Professor Smart

4:30 p.m.-4:45 p.m. (Showcase Area 1)

Presented by Harmony Artists


Jason D’Vaude – A One-Man Circus

4:45 p.m.-5:00 p.m. (Showcase Area 2)



1:45 p.m.–5:15 p.m.          

Members of State & Provincial Associations of Fairs Workshop

Open to State and Provincial members. Enjoy an educational session with like-minded individuals to help you improve your association.

Sponsored by Outdoor Amusement Business Association (OABA).

Location: Room 221 B&C


2:00 p.m.–3:00 p.m.          

OABA/CalPro Meeting

Location: Room 221 A


2:15 p.m.–3:00 p.m.          

2019 Convention Program Committee Meeting

Location: Room 225 D


3:30 p.m.–5:00 p.m.          

Young Professionals Initiative (YPI) Ment-A-Minute / Mentor Social Mixer

Facilitated by the YPI Steering Committee, all convention attendees under the age of 40 (and invited mentors) are welcome. Interact with established industry professionals and have a chance to gain insight from them.

Sponsored by The Best Around

Location: Room 225 B&C


5:45 p.m.–7:00 p.m.          

Happy Hour

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 Tony Jackson (presented by The Kinkead Agency). 

Presented by the National Independent Concessionaires Association (NICA)

Location: Stars at Night Ballroom , 2&3


6:45 p.m.–7:45 p.m.          

CFE and CVFM Reception and Toast

Open to all individuals with the CFE or CVFM certification. The IAFE wants to reward you for your hard work!

Sponsored by Markin Consulting and Populous

Location: Room 220

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.