The Canadian Rental Association's B.C. trade show took place on the past weekend, featuring some good energy and an uptick in attendance from local rental stores. The CRA reports a 12 per cent increase in attendees over the year before, with 45 per cent of local member houses coming to the event. Absolute numbers were not available, but there were 16 tables at the banquet, which translates to around 130 guests including vendors.
By Patrick Flannery
The show followed its usual format running Friday evening and Saturday at the Agriplex barn at the Cloverdale Exhibition grounds in Langley, B.C. Vendors reported some good activity fuelled by the ongoing strong B.C. economy. Draws were held for Show Bucks valid at any exhibiting vendor, a 50/50 prize and a table full of other prizes throughout the day.
The banquet took its usual buffet format with chicken, beef chunks and vegetarian lasagna on offer. Attendees threw in a toonie each and the last table drawn to get their food collected the pot. It’s about the only time you hear tables groaning in disappointment as their number is called to get their food.
Banquet attendees heard from Colin Wilson of A World of Rentals in Kingston, Ont., who was there representing the national CRA board. Wilson is the national Ontario director. Wilson complimented B.C. on the lively event and reminded attendees about the many benefits CRA membership brings. Wes Friess of the Cat Rental Store, a B.C. director, MCed the night. Friess let everyone know that the B.C. board has some openings and that there is a great chance for members to participate at a high level in the association. Rumour has it some hands went up later to help fill those positions.
Rentquip won BC Supplier of the Year and Star Rentals was honoured with BC Rental Store of the Year. Mike Faulkner accepted on behalf of Rentquip and Rob Potter took the stage to accept for Star.
Comedian Todd Allen entertained the banquet crowd after dinner and hosted a “game show” where Angie Venekamp of Rental Network, Aldo Chies of A & B Rentals and Mike Faulkner of Rentquip had to get up and talk about a rental-related topic until they made a mistake, at which point they’d be ousted for the next speaker. The group ran into some difficulties when the host chose skid steer operations as a topic and none of the participants rent or sell those! A magician named Rod Boss was also entertaining attendees on the show floor.
Photos from the event are available on Facebook.
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