The Greatest (WWETT) Show on Earth

The 2015 WWETT Show brought the industry’s best people, education and equipment together, along with a huge party and a free truck
The Greatest (WWETT) Show on Earth

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I hope you were able to attend this year’s Water & Wastewater Equipment, Treatment & Transport Show. If you didn’t, you missed a great opportunity.

This year’s show drew one of the largest crowds in the show’s history. Attendance was up 10.4 percent over last year to 9,474, and the number of exhibiting companies was up 12.9 percent to 597, an all-time record.

But it wasn’t just one of the biggest shows we’ve ever put on; it was also the best, starting with Education Day. Attendance was up and classrooms were standing room only for some sessions. The Nozzles, Nozzles, Nozzles class, taught by Duane Johnson of Affordable Pipeline Services, was jam-packed Monday afternoon. People were holding the doors open and listening from outside.

The attention paid to that class, and a conversation I had with one of the other presenters, brought home an important point: No matter how much technology advances and no matter how savvy some industry veterans become through their years of experience, there are still new things to learn about some of the most basic services you provide, and there is a constant influx of new people who are seeking this knowledge in order to do their jobs effectively and progress within the industry.

In a more general sense, it also reinforced a key point: It’s the overall education — the networking, connections, classes and conversations — that make the show so valuable. As one exhibitor told me, this is the event. Everything and everyone is here, and if you want to grow in this industry you need to be here.

New equipment can help you do your job more effectively and efficiently, but you can’t learn anything from a wrench. That’s not to say the displays of tools, trucks and equipment aren’t an impressive and valuable part of the show — they are the show — but it’s the people you meet, the conversations, the advice and the knowledge in that building that can transform your business. And it’s hard to walk out of the Indiana Convention Center when it’s over without feeling like you’re part of something important, progressive and respected.

In recent years, the show has also taken on a more international feel, with exhibitors bringing the best technology from 14 countries. And while there’s more for plumbers and drain cleaners than ever, there are also more classes and exhibitors geared toward the municipal market and the services end of the gas and oil industry. The name change is a reflection of that, and it opens up the show to more people, more technology and more ideas, all of which benefit you.

The name change also marked our 35th anniversary, and all attendees and exhibitors were entered for a chance to win a tricked-out Chevy truck to help commemorate the event. Max Silva of Warren Environmental was the lucky winner drawn at Wednesday night’s Industry Appreciation Party. Silva opted for $35,000 cash instead of the truck so he could pay off his student loans, which was fitting in many ways since education is such a huge component of what we do.

The 2015 WWETT Show is certainly one Silva and many others will never forget. If you weren’t able to attend, now is the time to put next year’s show on your calendar. And be aware we’re shifting the days so it’ll be easier to attend.

The 2016 WWETT Show will be held Wednesday, Feb. 17 through Saturday, Feb. 20 at the Indiana Convention Center in Indianapolis. We plan to make it even better, with more of everything you need to make your business stronger.

It was a pleasure meeting so many of you in Indy, and I hope more of you will be able to make it next year.


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