Monday, September 21, 2015

Mid-Atlantic Logging Expo ~ 2015

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One of Eddie's big professional responsibilities in his new job as Forestry Program Coordinator for the North Carolina Forestry Association is to coordinate professional and educational opportunities for the Pro-Logger Association.  Loggers in the state must go through the Association to become certified in order to sell timber to mills that want to be certified as producing sustainable wood products, which most of them do because their wood products are much more valuable if labeled sustainable.  Products made from sustainable wood are labeled as such so I encourage consumers to look for this labeling.  Sustainable wood means it was harvested with appropriate techniques to allow and enable the replanting and replacement of the trees that are harvested.  It is the epitome of responsible, sustainable forestry and the most important goal of my husband's profession.  Eddie handles the production of educational material and coordinating educational opportunities across the state to train the state's loggers in the correct methods of cutting timber.  We will actually be embarking on a little trip this week back to the mountains where Eddie will be conducting some educational programs for pro-loggers in that part of the state.  Also included in Eddie's roles as the Forestry Program Coordinator is to assist the Carolina Loggers Association with organizing the Mid-Atlantic Logging Expo every two years.  The Expo is a trade show where big logging equipment manufacturers and vendors can display that equipment and entice the region's logging companies to purchase them.  They display huge half a million dollar machines for harvesting timber, tires for the huge equipment, tractor trailers to haul the equipment, and much more.  The Expo draws over 3,000 people from across the Mid-Atlantic region and is an entertaining two day event.  The NCFA and Carolina Loggers Association work together to procure the land for the event, including purchasing of timber tracts so that the equipment manufacturers can demonstrate their products by harvesting timber, and lay out and sell the spots for the Expo.  Eddie worked very hard and sold out all the spots for this year's Expo which was a very big feat.  They estimated over 3,500 people attended and over $10 million in merchandise was sold, including about 12 hauling trailers.  I was amazed at the success as were many of the vendors.  I think it shows the forest industry is still a booming business in this area and is actually growing.  For example, we are expecting a growth in some new lumber mills that will produce wood pellets that will be in high demand in Europe where they are strongly encouraging a reduced carbon output by reducing their dependency on oil, coal, and gas for energy.  Wood pellets will be one of the major options to replace fuel, and we will be working to supply that demand.  The boys and I enjoyed seeing all the neat equipment and demonstrations at this event.  Eddie also lined up some yummy food options to feed the crowd.  He had lined up several great food trucks from the area.  He was disappointed on Friday when two of the food trucks from very reputable restaurants in Raleigh did not show up.  They didn't call or e-mail.  I thought this was a terrible business practice, and Eddie was stressed out trying to figure out how to feed the crowd.  The options he had on Friday stepped up and were very pleased with the amount of business they received supplying the food.  On Saturday when the crowd doubled in size, Eddie arranged for the Association to sell additional food options, including barbecue sandwiches and pizza, and again there was plenty of food options for the crowds with no complaints from the food vendors who made a lot of money for the day.  All in all, I was very proud of how well Eddie's first big expo went and was impressed with how well it was all organized and set up.      

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John Deere, along with Tigercat and Caterpillar, make up the big 3 who do the largest presentation and demonstrations.  
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The boys heading to watch Caterpillar's big demonstration.  The big red equipment picture actually holds the tree and cuts it off right at the ground and picks the whole tree up and carries it.  We saw one of these in action. 

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The boys enjoyed playing with some Caterpillar toys under the tent in the shade.  In past years, they had a big sand box for kids, but for some reason, they didn't do that this year.  My kids were a little disappointed. 

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Mattox checking out the trucks.  I usually boycott the camouflage for my babies because I think they should dress in prettier clothes while they are young, but I made an exception for this event.  

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Caterpillar had a big chipper on site and was chipping some hardwood trees.  In our area, hardwood trees do not grow very well or make very good lumber so they are usually used for chips and sawdust.  Pine grows best in our state and is usually what is planted for optimal growth and profit. 
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Tigercat is another of the big 3, and they had a lot of big equipment at the show.  I liked their sign and display. 

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The week before the show, the boys and I went with Daddy to the site to watch them getting ready.  Mostly, we watched the big equipment being delivered that day.  The boys sat on some of the Tigercat equipment.
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We watched some of the hardwood trees being cleared from Tigercat's part of the site.  You can see the cutter carrying the whole tree over to the pile.  There is an old barn that is going to be torn down.  I have put in a request to Eddie to procure me some of the old barn wood for a little project.  He has yet to come through. 

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My forester at work.  I just liked these shots of Eddie. 
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These boys enjoyed the food at the expo on Friday.  One of the places Eddie had lined up was a great barbecue restaurant we have recently tried and loved.  It specializes in Memphis, TN style barbecue. 
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Oh look, we even got the first pumpkin pictures of the season.  I would say this was a good kick off to the Fall season.  Now, we are looking forward to spending the first week of Fall in the mountains.  


  1. I know very little about forestry and the wood industry and I feel like this was just a great tutorial in all of it. I am certainly going to start looking for that label on things. It's great that your husband is doing such a good job, but look at you, helping too!

    The whole event looked really cool and fun. It's a bummer that those two food trucks didn't show up but it seems like it was their mistake because things worked out for the expo and they lost out on the money.

    Love the pumpkin pictures! It's a wee bit early in the year for those here, but we're going to go apple picking the second weekend of October and that's where we'll probably get our first pics. We're debating buying some that day but I'm afraid they'll rot before Halloween.

    Oh, and one more thing. We have the same beliefs about camouflage. Shocker! Ha ha!

  2. Oh my goodness, you all have been on my mind so much lately! I recently read a book titled The Ravens. The main character is a "forest cop." It was a murder mystery that he had been sucked into. It was so good! I'll do a review of it today or tomorrow!

    The re-used barn wood will be great for just about anything! Maybe even to frame some pictures. The possibilities are endless. I hope he is able to get it to you soon. :)

  3. I completely agree about the camouflage!
    LOL But Mattox looks s

  4. This is so cool Sherry. Thanks for sharing about the important things Eddie is doing in his work. It sounds like he is really making a big impact in his job and that's so cool. And it's neat that the kids and you get to travel with Eddie so much to see him in action.


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