If you simply set up your trade show booth and collect business cards or scan badges of everybody coming by, you’ll get a lot of leads, but they won’t be very good leads. Sure, you might get a hot prospect or two, but you’ll burn through a lot of suspects along the way. Can you afford to spend that time?
Worse yet, you’ll miss those list-building attendees who never even made it to your part of the show floor.
The secret to generating higher-quality leads – as with any form of successful marketing – is to offer a highly relevant message to a highly targeted audience.
That starts with a creative message that compels your target audience to learn more about you. Ask a provocative question, make a challenging statement or suggest a different reality. But make sure to let your audience know that you understand their situation and have a solution that solves their problem. Remember, however, your goal with pre-show marketing is to earn a spot on the attendee’s must-see list. Nothing more. It’s not the time to share your company’s history, list every feature, share prices or ask for the sale.
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The Large Wood Structures Symposium, held on February 20th at the Vancouver Convention Centre, started with a seminar entitled “Research to Help Push the Limit of Use of Mass Timber in Canada.”
Presented by NewBuildS! Scientific director Dr. Ying Hei Chui, the seminar delved into the many ways research is being implemented to tackle large wood builds.
Chui pointed out that in 1941, the national building code did not allow for wood structures above four storeys. Some European countries based their code on performance and not on arbitrary storey requirements, but Canada’s building code remained fixed on hard limits for wood structures.
Government is conducting a research program via the NRC construction portfolio to study the feasibility of large wood structures. But in the realm of industry-led research, a project to study mid-rise wood buildings is well underway.
FPInnovations has an Advanced Building Systems Program focusing on CLT (heavy timber.) Their program also touches on fire durability and sustainability.
Structures covered by the program include light frame, post and beam, CLT and hybrid.
Planned activities for 2013-2014 include a focus on sustainability, as well as studying building envelopes and creating a set of energy efficient building enclosure design guidelines.read more
Steven Street spent some time this week in the Vancouver area, seeing with his own eyes what all the fuss and fear has been about.
The wood industry executive, along with a few Ontario engineers and architects, toured half a dozen new British Columbia condo developments.
On paper, the buildings might sound radical. But, in reality, they seemed to Street and others on the daylong excursion exactly what they were meant to be — nice, affordable places to live.
Until four years ago, these six-storey condo projects would have been built out of concrete and steel. But because of controversial amendments to the B.C. Building Code, which used to limit wood-frame construction to four storeys, they can now be built — more cheaply and quickly — out of wood.
“There are upwards of 170 of these buildings under construction out here. They’re nice-looking places. The people living in them seem generally very happy,” says Street via cellphone mid-tour.
“This isn’t about building cheap housing (that compromises safety). It’s about removing barriers to using materials other than plastic, steel, glass and concrete.”
Ontario’s Building Code restricts wood construction to buildings of four storeys or less. But for a number of reasons, developers here have been pushing to boost that number to six, like in B.C., where there’s now talk of going to eight or more storeys.
After a successful show in 2012, BC Wood returned to the MBC Show in Seoul, South Korea from January 25th to 28th. MBC is one of the largest construction shows in Korea with 312 exhibitors this year and over 170,000 visitors comprised of builders/architects (39%), interior designers (32%), manufacturers (6%), and distributors (4%) according to the organizers data. Products on display at the show included everything from structural materials and construction equipment to windows, doors, and finishing materials.
The Canadian pavilion was once again organized by BC Wood’s Korean representative, JC Lee. While there were other overseas exhibitors at the show, only the Canadian exhibitors enjoyed a branded pavilion. A total of six BC Wood members took part covering a variety of species and lumber products as well as kitchen cabinets and siding products. The BC Wood booth was used as a reception desk for clients coming for appointments as well as to disseminate information on Canadian wood products and recruit buyers for the September GBM.
As always, JC lined up meetings for the attending members with key clients. However, this year he also arranged an opening day reception inside the pavilion in order to create a networking opportunity for members with invited Korean wood industry VIPs. Both the BC Government Office in Seoul and the Canadian Embassy were partners in this event. Over 100 Korean clients attended this event.
BC Wood also organized an architect’s seminar on the day before the show in collaboration with KIA (the Korean Institute of Architects) in order to promote the use of Canadian wood products in commercial building projects and particularly for facilities being built for the Pyungchang Winter Olympic Games. The event was held at the historic Old Seoul Rail Station and was attended by close to 100 KIA members. Attendees were able to learn about the various wood solutions offered by Canada while we were also able to gain access to high-value specifiers and influencers in the Korean architectural community. BC Wood is planning to further develop this target segment by taking part in the KIA Convention this October. Please contact Jim Ivanoff (email@example.com ) or JC Lee (firstname.lastname@example.org ) for more information on this upcoming event.
A few comments, suggestions, and ideas that may be of interest…
A few weeks back, BC Wood and a contingent of eight member companies travelled to Las Vegas to participate at the International Builders Show (IBS), an annual event where tens of thousands of suppliers, distributors, and builders convene to examine new innovations in home building materials, appliances, fixtures, and technologies.
The mood at this years’ event was optimistic, as construction of single family homes climbed 18% in December from the previous year. When measured year-to-year, home construction in the US is projected to be 23% higher than in 2011, which was a record low year. Strong housing starts along with pent up consumer demand created an air of renewed confidence at this year’s IBS.
IBS also sets the standard for manufacturers to unveil the latest in new and innovative construction products. Kohler, for example, introduced a Bluetooth enabled shower head that can instantly stream your music collection from your cell phone or tablet. Innovative wood products included stunning curved glass door systems from Nana Wall and Caoba door that take advantage of the Eclipse track system which allows the doors to be folded away allowing for large unobstructed openings of up to 20 feet.
The BC contingent, not to be overshadowed by their competitors, did an excellent job of showcasing their wares. Kettle Valley Millwork partnered with Norelco cabinets in the design and construction of a beautiful booth exhibiting their world-class cabinet and architectural millwork capabilities. One showstopper was Norelco’s “gun slinger” kitchen which featured a solid mesquite wood counter which was supported by 3 hand carved six shooter guns. Attendees were drawn to the unique look of the kitchen and at one point had a line up of 10 people to get into the booth.
Participating BC Wood members commented on the high quality leads that were created at the event. BC Wood member Canadian Timberframes Ltd. felt that they got over a 100 solid leads from builders and architects from across the United States and South America. All things considered, the 2013 IBS builders show was a barometer for showing that the US economy is improving and that the residential construction sector across the US is back on the right track. Initial optimism was abundant and here is hoping that this attitude now becomes the norm. For more information on the IBS show or the US market, please contact me at email@example.com
I’m a glass-half-full kind of guy, I believe, and I’m flexible, so I try to look at the positive opportunities in any situation. Small trade shows, therefore, aren’t a problem. In fact, they can be a powerful tool for the opportunistic trade show marketer.
Sure, you can go into the small show looking for problems, but a positive approach can get you more bang for your buck than many larger shows.
1. Small audience. Big connections. – Sure, the traffic might not be heavy throughout your show, but that lets you reach out to a few key contacts to schedule meetings. Fewer activities and a smaller show floor means they are likely to have fewer commitments if you can get on their calendars early. Make a compelling case and get the appointment in your trade show booth or before or after the exhibit hours.
As mentioned in earlier Wood Connections, we anticipated that the first quarter of 2013 would be a busy for the Specifiers Program and the reality is indeed living up to expectations.
We started 2013 out with a bang as January was an incredibly busy month. We conducted 9 Lunch & Learn (L&L) sessions with architects in Vancouver and Surrey and booked additional sessions for February and March. Three of these sessions were initiated by the architects as they requested follow up lunch & learns on specific products we covered in our overview.
We also finalized 4 seminars; two of which are with the two major construction associations in Greater Vancouver – The Independent Construction Business Association (ICBA) and the Vancouver Regional Construction Association (VRCA). BC Wood will have 5 firms from industry actively participating in these sessions with each having approximately 20 minutes to educate the contractors on their respective products. We have also finalized plans for group seminars in Kamloops and Kelowna. These sessions are targeting architects and specifiers and once again BC Wood will be joined by representatives from our industry. This time, 4 companies will participate and present their products in an educational format to the respective groups. We are also planning on a couple of individual L&L sessions while in the Okanagan. All these sessions will be held in March with Kamloops and Kelowna scheduled for March 5th and 6th respectively, the VRCA scheduled for March 20th, and the ICBA scheduled for March 27th.
While we haven’t mentioned it yet, February will be no “cake walk”. As of now, we will have conducted 3 lunch & learn sessions, and are gearing up for Buildex which will be held on Wednesday and Thursday of this week. a week later, I am off to Seattle for the Wood Solutions Fair and returning for another lunch & learn session. Then the week after, we are off to the Interior for our previously mentioned seminars.
In the first weekend of February, I had the pleasure of speaking to the BC Log and Timber Builder Industry Association on the subject of Marketing to Architects. The occasion was the LTBIA’s 16th Annual Conference and AGM which was held at the Quaaout Lodge in Chase, BC. Although my stay was relatively short, I did have the opportunity to renew acquaintances and met some new friends from the LTBIA. From all reports, the conference was a great success so congratulations to Patti LeFrancois and Aaron Moore and their groups for organizing this successful event. I was happy to have been a small part of it.
It’s hard to believe but in just 6 (hectic) weeks, our fiscal year will come to an end and we will start gearing up for the 2013 – 2014 Specifiers Program. If you have any thoughts regarding changes or additions to the program, this would be a good time for your suggestions. We are very open to them as in the end, while we may administer the program, it can only be successful if industry is fully engaged with the ultimate goal of increasing industry’s business. So if you have any suggestions, please let us know.
Also, if you have any questions on this article or wish for more information on any aspect of the Specifier Program, please contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org or call the office. I would look forward to hearing from you.read more
Dust collection is one of those issues for the small woodworking shop that cost money to operate and maintain, but doesn’t seem to add value to the product…or does it. Lacking dust collection or having inadequate dust collection can generate all sorts of problems if for example, you have a finishing booth. Without an appropriate dust collection system, fine dust particles will be drawn into the spray area either by the area’s exhaust system or by being stirred up by other movement in the shop. Wet coated surfaces are magnets for dust, and as a result product quality suffers and your finishing costs rise as you try to deal with fixing the problem at a later stage.
Small shops have two choices with regard to dust collection: a portable single stage dust collection system or a two-stage cyclone system. The single-stage systems are economical to acquire, simple to operate and being portable, they can be moved from wood working machine to machine as required. They have less loss of air velocity and volume as the blower unit is close to the source of chips, shavings and dust. However, they need adequate space to operate in and they have to be repositioned as required. The fan or impeller on these units does come into contact with dust or any other debris in the air stream which in turn may cause damage to the fan assembly. Such impacts can cause sparks and in the presence of dry, fine woody material, a fire could result.
Two-stage or centralized dust collection systems are more powerful and costly, but they can accommodate the dust collection needs of a number of machines simultaneously. A two stage system involves a cyclone to separate out coarse dust from the finer dust, followed by a filtering system or bag house to capture the fine dust. They are more often positioned outdoors thereby freeing up valuable floor space. With these systems the impeller does not come into contact with any of the debris drawn in but sparks can still occur in these systems especially in the ducting and the bag house.
A duct system is required to connect the machines to the dust collector. Ducting systems can be the downfall of any centralized system therefore careful design is required so that the dust collector position is optimized to the position of the machine it services. There are a number of factors that can influence the performance of these systems. For example, the machines being connected should be in close proximity to the dust collector and attached with ducting that contains a minimal number of corners and other joints. Using the optimal duct diameter size for each machine ensures sufficient air volume to provide effective dust collection and air velocity to move the dust along the duct without it settling into piles.
The decision between a single stage or a two stage dust collection system rests mainly with cost, space requirements, simplicity of operation and dust collection requirements. Contacting a local vendor of dust collection equipment is a good first step in making the final decision on which system to choose.
Good websites about dust collector basics can be found at http://billpentz.com and http://www.rockler.com/articles/getting-tough-on-dust.cfm. Alternatively, there are a number of companies that offer turnkey dust collection systems and services to assist companies in selecting the optimum sized units for their manufacturing needs.
For further information contact on this topic, contact Brian Ehrecke (250) 462-4000, email@example.com more
The sawmills of three major Canadian lumber producers are expected to enjoy brisk orders this year, especially as housing markets in the United States perk up.
West Fraser Timber Co. Ltd., Canfor Corp. and International Forest Products Ltd., which report their fourth-quarter results this week, have regained their swagger during the long road to recovery over the past four years.
B.C. Interior sawmills operated by West Fraser, Canfor and Interfor are working their way through limited timber inventories that must be processed after mountain pine beetles decimated forests in the region, but there is an abundance of wood supply in the U.S. Southeast, said Mark Kennedy, an analyst with CIBC World Markets Inc.
Interfor will release its fourth-quarter earnings on Thursday, while West Fraser and Canfor will announce their financial results on Friday. Analysts forecast the three Vancouver-based companies will generate impressive margins for earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization (EBITDA) because lumber prices climbed sharply in the final quarter of 2012.
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Growing demand from the U.S. housing markets has convinced Tolko Industries the time is right to reopen its Athabasca mill in Slave Lake.
The company is proceeding with preparations to reopen its oriented strand board (OSB) and engineered wood products mill early in 2014, president and CEO Brad Thorlakson announced Tuesday. Tolko, a private, Canadian-owned forest products company based in Vernon, B.C., closed the plant in 2009.
“Before we could commit to the significant financial and human resource investment required to restart the mill, we had to determine, to the greatest degree possible, that current improvements in market conditions are sustainable,” Thorlakson said in a release.
“We are confident about the future of the industry and look forward to positive years ahead. Reopening Athabasca confirms our commitment to meeting the needs of our customers through innovation and product development.”read more
BC Wood and FP Innovations are inviting you to participate in a geo-traceability workshop, to determine the potential role of traceability systems like ThisForest as a marketing tool, and as an addition or alternative to certification.
Attendees will be introduced to forest product marketing trends, how certification changed the game, and the growing use of geo-traceability. The leaders of the workshop will discuss geo-traceability in depth, providing a solid understanding of its unique attributes. A forest products geo-traceability system, ThisForest, is being developed by Ecotrust and will be introduced and review in some detail.
Attendee’s comprehension of the growth and importance of geo-traceability will be expanded include insights as to how international markets perceive and in some cases demand geo-traceability.
Consumers are increasingly curious about the story behind their purchases, and once they know that story, they are likely to tell it to friends and family for years to come, generating support and referrals for your business.
With today’s technology, it is easy to share the story of your products with your clients using geo-traceability. This workshop will also explore how geo-traceability situates itself in relation to certification, international trade trends and supply chain management.
Geo-traceability is certain to become an important tool for marketing and branding companies as responsible, concerned and accountable. It is in your best interest to find out if participation in this project will benefit you now and in years to come.
Date: Thursday, February 21, 2013
Location: 7551 Westminster Hwy, Richmond, BC
For more information, contact Randi Walker at firstname.lastname@example.org or 604-882-7100.read more
As stronger wood products hit the construction market, expect the height of wood structures to rise, say engineers and architects.
In the seminar Innovation in Wood Construction, engineer Eric Karsh and architect Jana Foit will hammer home the benefits of wood construction and how new wood building materials will lead to projects beyond the six-storey limit that exists in B.C. today.
“The new wood products have progressed so much. Building codes need to recognize the differences and include them in the standards,” said Karsh, a civil engineer and principal at Vancouver’s Equilibrium Consulting.
One product he expects to be included in Canadian building codes within a few years is cross-laminated timber (CLT) panels.
The panels, which can be 10 feet wide by 40 feet long and up to 16 inches thick, are built up from narrow planks, roughly one inch thick.read more
It has been almost two years since 3/11 and with most of the clean-up now done the reconstruction work is expected to move ahead at full steam this year. The Canada-Tohoku Reconstruction Project has been at the forefront of the reconstruction in Natori City, Miyagi Prefecture and we are proud to announce that the Donguri Anne Library project was completed on January 18th. Canada’s new Ambassador to Japan Mackenzie Clugston as well as NRCan’s Director General Glenn Mason were on hand to celebrate along with many representatives of the Canadian wood products industry.
The library project has been very well received by the local community. The mayor and other town officials repeatedly praised the Canadian effort to rebuild this crucial community gathering place. The exposed Canada Tsuga (hem-fir) posts and beams created a warm but dynamic interior that will welcome locals for years and years to come. The beautiful WRC on the outside of the building also stands in sharp contrast to the cold concrete structure that is being replaced (the original building suffered extensive damage in the 9.0 earthquake and is currently being demolished). However, watching locals and in particular children rush in to borrow books as soon as the ceremony had been completed was the most rewarding scene of the day.
January 18th was actually a double celebration as we also held the ground breaking ceremony for the Yuriage Market reconstruction project immediately following the library opening. The market project is much larger and also more complicated as the original facility was ground zero for the tsunami. As a result, reconstruction in that part of Natori City has been slowed by fears of future disasters. One of the countermeasures that has been taken is to raise the ground level between 70-400cm. Natori City finally completed the ground raising for the market area in December which has allowed us to proceed with construction.
Once again the local community came out to thank Canada for helping rebuild this area. The ground breaking was extensively covered by local print and television media demonstrating the importance of this market which before the earthquake was the largest and most famous in the Tohoku region. The chairman of the association that runs Yuriage on behalf of the city became emotional as he explained how this project will be the cornerstone of the entire area’s rebirth once it is officially open in early May. I am very much looking forward to that day which will see people return to this now empty and eerily quiet former neighbourhood.read more
A Fine Log Building, based in Chilliwack, BC, handcrafts log home and timber frame structures. With over 23 years of experience in the wood building industry, Eric Menard started the business in 2000 building unique log home projects and completing log & timber work on many commercial buildings. His creativity lead him to explore and create new products throughout the years. Now, they have expanded to include a signature line of luxury log tables and benches that are shipped throughout Canada and the United States. Since the tables and benches are made from natural logs, each is uniquely different and last a lifetime.
What sets A Fine Log Building apart is that they use logs that mills can not use. They take a log or stump of any size that mills discard and use it to make a one-of-a-kind product. They build anything from small character log cabins to large recreations facilities and furniture.
An interesting project they recently completed was a traditional 18th century Long House for the Sto:Lo Nation in Chilliwack, BC. The Long House was built as it would have been by their people during that time in history. The building covers an area of 40′X70′. Local Douglas Fir was used for all of the log beams & trusses and local Western Red Cedar was used for the posts. Split cedar shakes were used on the roof and rough sawn board & baton were used along the exterior walls. This building is open to the public and is currently used for educational purposes.
For more information on A Fine Log Building, visit www.finelogbuilding.com
By Roy Manion
2013 is starting out with a bang for the Specifier’s Program with 9 Lunch & Learn (L&L) seminars booked for January. Seven of the nine seminars are with architect firms we have never visited before; we are continuing our efforts of expanding BC Wood’s circle of influence throughout the architect community.
The other two out of nine L&L seminars are focus sessions where BC Wood will be joined with a representative from industry who will be presenting their products in an educational format. These two sessions are will take place at an architect’s firm that we have already had L&L seminars in the past. This is when relationships with specific companies are really formed, making these follow up sessions invaluable.
The Specifiers Program is close to reaching the point where, by the end of our fiscal year (March 31st), we will have visited all but a handful of the major firms throughout the province. Therefore, if all goes according to plan, by the end of our next fiscal year, BC Wood will have held at least one lunch and learn session at each architect and designer firm throughout BC.
We are also working on group seminars. During the week of March 4th, we, along with four participating members, will be in Kamloops and Kelowna giving seminars to the specifier communities.
At the end of March, BC Wood, accompanied by participating members, will be giving our first group seminar to the contractors who are members of the Lower Mainland Chapter of the Independent Construction Builders Association (ICBA). We are also working with the Vancouver Regional Construction Association, BC’s other major construction association, for a similar session. This is part of our continuing effort to expand the Specifiers Program to include the construction and engineering communities.
I have also been asked to speak on marketing to the architects during the first weekend in February at the BC Log and Timber Building Association’s upcoming conference in Chase, BC. I am very much looking forward to it, as well as the opportunity of meeting with many of their members.
If you have any questions on this article or wish more information on any aspect of the Specifier Program, please contact me at email@example.com or call the office. I look forward to hearing from you.read more
The 2012-13 Working Wood Program has evolved into STRUCTURE – a cost shared activity that was developed to provide local BC Designers with the opportunity to gain some new business skills; work with a unique material (Brisco’s LVL); and participate in an important local tradeshow to demonstrate the reach and connection these platforms can offer.
STRUCTURE will provide an opportunity for these young designers to enhance their business and marketing skills, while building important connections in the industry. The following Designers have been selected to participate in this activity:
All the finished products designed and built will be on display in the IDSWest booth at the BUILDEX Show, taking place February 13th and 14th at the Vancouver Convention Centre West. Make sure you drop by to see the innovative design and use of LVL, supplied by Brisco.
To learn more, Pat from Daly Company uploaded a blog post on his experience and images from the STRUCTURE program: https://daly-company.squarespace.com/blog
A few comments, suggestions, and ideas that may of interest…
If you needed another sign that the US construction Industry is on the rebound, then you need to look no further than the Northern California market. The town of Truckee, California, which is situated nicely between the south shore of Lake Tahoe and the ski mecca of Squaw Valley, is currently experiencing a bit of a housing boom. Recent housing stats from the local town hall show that over 100 homes are currently under construction with an additional 80+ homes in the design stage. The majority of the construction starts are for secondary vacation homes with an average listed value of $2.4 million dollars.
Who is driving this market demand? The vast majority of the buyers come from the San Francisco Bay Area and Silicon Valley markets who are actively investing in real estate in the Lake Tahoe market. The short two hour commute from the Bay Area has made the town of Truckee an attractive option for many.
There are a number of developments underway with two in particular that should be of interest to BC wood product manufacturers. The first is the Martis Camp Development (image above - www.martiscamp.com), a private ski and golf resort community, is experiencing significant construction activity with over 50 homes currently under construction. Just down the road from Martis is another development, Shaffers Mill ( www.schaffersmill.com), which has seen a change of ownership and as such, is experiencing a high level of construction activity. Like Martis Camp, the Schaffers Mill project will consist of a golf course and village clubhouse surrounded by 200 high-end homes. The golf course development, designed by Ward Young Architects, prominently features contemporary wood architecture including a heavy post and beam design.
One way for BC manufacturers to benefit from this construction activity is to connect with the two key building product distributors in the region. Tahoe Truckee Lumber Company (TTLC) and Tahoe Building Supplies are responsible for supplying construction products to builders in both the Martis Camp and Schaffers Mill projects. Both offer a wide variety of wood products for both structural and finished applications including a number of BC suppliers. In discussions with managers at both building yards, they are interested in wood products from British Columbia and in particular any product that is unique, innovative, and priced well for the market.
As the US market continues to improve, we will continue to focus on providing market intelligence and key contacts to the BC Industry. We will target markets and sectors in the residential and light commercial construction sector such as the two projects listed above. For more information on these projects or any region in the US, please feel free to contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org
Our 2012 Global Buyers Mission videos have now been uploaded. All of our videos can be seen on our YouTube channel: https://www.youtube.com/user/BCWoodAssociation?feature=watch
Global Buyers Mission Video
Wood First Program Video
Buyer Testimonial Video
Exhibitor Testimonial Video
Please join us for our Open House and Co-op Presentation Evening on Thursday, January 31st, 2013.
All are cordially invited to our annual open house event, where you can learn more about the education, training, and industry assistance programs that go on in our building. Starting with a complimentary lunch at 12.30, there will be some short presentations between 1pm and 3pm, followed by equipment and software demonstrations in our machine lab.
This year’s afternoon presentations will highlight research and development at UBC and how it benefits the wood products industry, as well as showcasing the training and product development programs available to companies in the sector. In the evening final year co-op students in the Wood Products Processing program will talk about the projects they completed during their recent co-op work terms. There will be ample opportunity in the afternoon and evening to network with manufacturers, suppliers, students, staff and faculty.
There is no charge for these events, but we ask that you please RSVP to email@example.com, specifying whether you will be attending in the afternoon, evening, or both.
Date: Thursday January 31st, 2013
12.15pm – Registration Opens
12.30pm – Light lunch for industry guests
1pm to 3pm – Presentations from staff and faculty
3pm to 5pm – Machinery and software demonstrations, lab tours
5pm to 6pm – Networking and light dinner
6:00 – 9:00 pm – Co-op Presentation Evening (including 30-minute refreshment/networking break)
Centre for Advanced Wood Processing
UBC Forest Sciences Centre
2900 – 2424 Main Mall
Vancouver, BC V6T 1Z4
9th Annual Call for Nominations for the Wood WORKS! BC 2013 Wood Design Awards will close on January 25, 2013.
Nomination forms are available online at www.wood-works.caread more