Nick discusses the highlights of AWCI 2002.

Well, that headline is aimed at our good friend, Mr. Wayne James, of the Texas Lathing and Plastering Association and the One-Coat Stucco Association, who wrote me a nice letter telling me about TLPCA's new CD-ROM as well this year's TLPCA 50th anniversary Annual Convention to be held in Austin, June 20-22. These regional shows are a lot of fun and very informative. However, the title of this column really references a line in Wayne's letter that read, "Please don't invite me to any more Walls & Ceilings parties. I don't think my health could stand it!" I guess we throw a good party and I do remember Wayne complaining about constantly having to deal with a full margarita glass every time he turned around!

It was great to see so many familiar faces and meet some new ones at this year's AWCI show held in March (two weeks ago, as of this writing). Everyone's spirits seem to be pretty high and optimism pervaded the show. We got some good feedback from associations, manufacturers and readers in person, and as a journalist, it's nice to actually physically interact with these folks. We even got a chance to socialize with our distinguished competition and found we have a similar goal: finding the best information we can for the industry. Imagine that!

We saw some interesting new products at the show and will be providing plenty of technical editorial in the issues to come. Walls & Ceilings' staff wants to make sure the magazine not only gives readers reinforcement information on what they do but offer inspiration and direction toward new products and services that can offer customers more.

We are also going to be expanding our editorial range a bit to cover certain applications of windows, doors and insulation as is relevant to the wall and ceiling contractor. Another topic of concern is insurance issues. This is an increasing issue to everyone in the industry and we'll make sure we cover all the angles so the reader is fully informed on what do be aware of.

In a way, the AWCI show is like New Year. We come together to the largest industry trade show and reestablish our relationships and make new friends. We return home from the show with a fresh perspective and fresh ideas. Although I wasn't editor when 2002 rang in, from this perspective, I think this will be a great year for all of us and I wish great success to all of you. Remember: "Your focus determines your reality."

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