Well, how was everyone’s summer?  I know in our region we are ready for cooler weather and rain.  Here in Oklahoma, we had the 4th hottest summer on record and the drought continues.  The flowers did fine but the employees wilted a couple of times during the season.  It has finally cooled down here but still no rain.  I’m just so happy for the cooler temperatures, I’m just not paying any attention to the no rain part.  
    
As fast as this summer has gone by, I know the Conference will be here before we know it.  And with the Conference comes the Research Auction.  Please, everyone, bring or send what you can for our silent auction and bucket raffle.  If you are coming to the Conference, bring whatever you can for the auction, we appreciate it all.  It can be company shirts or hats, seeds, bulbs, some kind of tool, it’s all up to your imagination.  For those of you who just cannot attend this meeting, please send something to the hotel to Judy’s attention and mark it for the Auction and I’ll make sure it gets to where it needs to be.
    
Remember, the money raised from all these donations is for cut flower research which ultimately benefits all of us.  Research and the information gained from it is all good and helps us to be better growers and make more money.  Also remember all of your donations are tax deductible.  We are changing the format of the live auction this year and I believe everyone will enjoy it.  We will have some really nice things for the live auction so bring your checkbook.
    
For those of you planning to attend the Conference, Brenda has done an incredible job of putting together a fantastic program.  I can’t wait to see all the exciting things on the tours and to visit with everyone there.  It’s such a fun time to be able to see and visit with people I haven’t seen for a while and to catch up.  Come by the Research Foundation booth and say hello and bid on an item or buy a raffle ticket.  
    
As usual, I learned a lot this year and made plenty of mistakes, but that’s what makes this so much fun.  And on the positive side of things, I didn’t die from heat stroke!  Ha!  Have a great remaining season and I hope to see you in California.