The Westin Annapolis
Sunday, October 23 - Wednesday, October 26, 2016
IN ANNAPOLIS, MD IN REVIEW
It’s hard to believe but fall has gone, Christmas 2016 and New Year’s Celebrations are now a memory. One of my special memories for this past fall has to be the NIA 2016 Fall Convention held in Annapolis, Maryland October 23-26, 2016! I think everyone that attended will join me in saying it was one of the most uplifting meeting we have ever had. The speakers, Lt. Zach Holiday from the Naval Academy and Jan Suggs, veteran of the Vietnam War and reason we have the Vietnam War Memorial both gave presentations that left everyone uplifted, inspired and fortunate to have heard the stories these amazing men had to share.
Our opening night reception with suppliers gave us a great time to visit with suppliers and industry friends, while enjoying some of the local Maryland food and beverages! The Hyatt Annapolis offered a perfect setting for the events and meetings, as well as an excellent location…… except perhaps for sharing it with some dearly departed! Yes, historical area and we overlooked a true military cemetery! Good news is they didn’t bother anyone with loud parties at night.
In addition to the excellent speakers, the agenda included a tour of the US Naval Academy, which is a far more beautiful and steeped in history facility that I had been aware. The tour gave a true understanding of a typical day in the life of the students, the discipline and dedication of such fine young men that will be serving our country. This tour was included as a member benefit by the association.
Another highlight for me was watching all our “ice men and women” dig into a local favorite, Maryland Chesapeake Bay Crabs! This wonderful feast took place after a wonderful 2 hour sailing trip on the Chesapeake Bay where many of the members took the wheel and sailed us through the waters on a beautiful day in Annapolis! If I were the Schooner Woodwinds captain I’d be watching out for Kathy Neuman and Kevin Barlow… they might be taking his job before long!
Now, back to the crabs! If any of you wants to learn how to quickly make haste of a crab, getting every little juicy morsel, look no further than to Mike Mastro and Jake Jenna! They are without doubt “crab cracking masters, extrodinaire! As you can tell from the pictures, a great time was had by all….. even if we never got much crab to eat. Thank goodness for the corn on the cob, potatoes and chicken!
The convention closed with a special evening award dinner and installation of officers. The evening honored a very touched Walt Ribeiro, Jr and his dad, Walt Ribeiro, Sr. with the coveted Warren Pearce Award for outstanding service to the ice industry and the Northeastern Ice Association. Thanks to Fred Lomangino, Deb Ribeiro, Charlotte Maginnis, and others the award was kept a complete secret from Walt, Jr. His family was there to share the special moment celebrating both family members. The look on Walt’s face when he saw his family and realized what was happening was worth it all! I have known Walt for many years and truly can say he is an amazing addition to the industry and no one deserved the award more. Congratulations Walt!
The evening also included the induction of our offices and directors of the NIA for 2016-2018. Bruce Hanson, Bayo’s Ice handed the gavel to our new President, Craig Rossi, Eastern Ice, who promises to give us two great years of conventions and industry focus. Thank you Bruce for a great year and a half as President! Don Hutton, Cascades Flexible Products was inducted as our First Vice President. Our Second Vice President for the two years, Derek Rudzinski was absent for good reason, he was on his honeymoon! Congratulations Derek!
Rounding out our board for the two year term are Kevin Barlow, Southern Connecticut Ice & Fuel, Fred Lomangino, Ice King & Cold Storage, Jake Genna, Genna Ice, Walt Ribeiro, Jr. Modern Ice Company and Cory Hanson, Bayo’s Ice Company as directors. Supplier Representatives are Walt Ribeiro, Jr. and Charlotte Maginnis, Leer, Inc. On a side note, thank you Kevin Barlow for graciously accepting the position on the board, even though you didn’t know you were on there until the induction!! What a way to get a great new board member!
Hopefully in reading my “Convention in Review” it will bring back some great memories for those of you that attended and will convince those of you that couldn’t attend that you will not want to miss the next one! I think everyone that attended will agree it was a great convention and a great time together.
We are in the process of looking for hotels and confirming location for our next convention, which will be in early October in Providence, Rhode Island so check the NIA web site, www.northeasterniceassociation.org for details early in 2017! The conventions offer many benefits and an opportunity to visit with all your suppliers in one place. We will be offering a plant tour, which is always a favorite to our members so start making plans to attend.
As always, it is my sincere pleasure to serve as your managing director and I look forward to seeing you in 2017 at the meeting. In the meanwhile please know that your headquarters’ office is here for you at any time. If we may be of assistance in any way please give us a call.
All the best for a very prosperous and healthy 2017!