NZARM Annual Conference 2003

The NZARM Bay of Plenty Branch Executive has been approached (coerced) by the NZARM National Executive to host the NZARM Conference in 2003. We thought about it and decided that if we could get backing from an organisation able to provide logistic support then we should give it a go. It is the 50th anniversary of NZARM and its predecessor organisations so would need to be a really good doo! Environment B·O·P have come to the party with both logistical and some sponsorship support. As a result the Branch Executive, after looking into the why’s, how’s and where’s have agreed to run the event.

Essentially the event will be based in Rotorua (venues, airport, etc) in mid September (Sun 14, Mon 15 and Tue 16) 2003. We would run it on a cost recovery basis with hopefully some sponsorship from organisations such as Landcare Research, NIWA, IGNS, Landcare Trust, Forest Research etc. to help out (they haven’t been asked yet!).

The theme chosen is NZARM Gold – our past, present and future, emphasising the integrated catchment management approach (or lack of it) over the years. We will be looking back at what NZARM and its predecessor organisations have been involved with through the decades from the 1950’s to the present, discussing current topical issues and looking at what may be before us over the next 50 years! We have chosen Lake Okareka as the focus for the Tuesday field trip as it is a good example of a site that encompasses many of the (historical) management issues faced by soil conservation, planning and science, and the need for robust integrated catchment management approaches into the future.

The dinner on the Monday evening needs to be special, it will have a theme relating to the 50th anniversary of the association and any thoughts on the programme would be welcomed. Suggestions so far include:

  • Past presidents giving a tag team presentation on the history of the organisation, one for each decade,
  • Golden Oldies Club 25+ years membership presented with a lapel pin for the guys and a broach for the ladies,
  • Norm thinks that a golden jubilee model Triumph motorbike would be appropriate,
  • All life (honorary) members to be there,
  • Fun entertainment and music items.

We want to make it a practitioners conference, the tone oriented to the practicable hands-on side of our profession rather than the theoretical. We want it to be a stimulating but fun event with a good balance of crunchy issues and entertainment, something to remember.

We have a coordinator, Jessica Smith, who has experience in running such events. We decided to promote accommodation at the venue but not to include it in the package as NZARM members are notoriously frugal and may want to stay with friends or relatives.

The draft programme is for a:

  • Sunday evening; NZARM Executive and Regional Coordinators Meetings etc.,
  • Monday; registration, presentations during the day, AGM and conference dinner,
  • Tuesday; field trip (Lake Okareka) with a fun evening to finish,
  • Wednesday; possibly a charter fishing trip (weather permitting) if there is interest.

Any suggestions welcomed, photos and stories much appreciated. It is our goal to have most of the event organised this side of Xmas and advertised early in 2003. No excuses!