The RMRTA Conference Course Descriptions

Our annual conference brings together professionals from golf courses, sports fields, and more for an exceptional educational and networking experience. Also, our conference provides valuable insights and industry updates to help you stay ahead of the curve. Join us for a dynamic event that brings together the best and brightest in the turfgrass industry.

Workshops - Tuesday, December 3, 2024

7AM - 8AM - Registration & Breakfast

Pesticide Applicator Prep Workshop - 8AM-3PM

  • Pesticide Applicator Prep Course - Lisa Blecker - CSU - Prelicense PREP course will explain basic principles for the safe and effective use of pesticides and will follow the general commercial applicator study guide. Core Credit CEU will provide all 7 core commercial applicator credits (Laws and Regulations (2), Public Safety, Applicator Safety, Environmental Protection, Use of Pesticides, Pesticides and their Families). You are encouraged to pre-purchase the study guide for this workshop.

Getting Started With Landscape Irrigation Installation & Troubleshooting Workshop - 8AM-3PM

  • Landscape Irrigation Workshop - Spencer Jordan & Brad Meyer - We will cover how to glue pipe, set and adjust heads and wire an irrigation clock. In the afternoon we will discuss electrical and two wire troubleshooting methods.

AM Workshops - 8AM-11AM

  • Golf Green Organic Matter Measurement & Management - Dr. Roch Gaussoin - University of Nebraska - The purpose of this workshop is to provide information to better understand the complexities of organic matter sampling, accumulation, associated problems, and efficient solutions for remediation. Information from nearly 25 years of research will provide strategies for golf green organic matter management specific for the golfing facility.
  • Turf and Weedy Grass Identification (Category 206) - Dr. Tony Koski - This workshop will discuss why correct identification of both the weed and desirable turf is essential for developing integrated management programs for weeds in turf management. Also, the importance of correct identification allows the applicator to make better decisions on which herbicides are most likely to control the weed, while reducing the potential for phytotoxic responses from the turf. Identification will be taught using live samples and an assortment of hard copy keys/books and internet-based keys and phone apps.

11AM- 12PM - Lunch Not provided - several nearby restaurants available

PM Workshops -12PM-3PM

  • Winterkill and Recovery - Dr. Kevin Frank - Michigan State University - Lessons learned for minimizing damage, reestablishing greens, and update on the WinterTurf research grant.
  • Tree and Shrub Identification (Category 207) - Dr. Alison O'Connor, Eric Hammond - CSU - This hands-on session will focus on the plant diagnostic process. Tree and shrub samples will be used to help students become more proficient in plant identification. Plant diagnostic samples will be presented for diagnosis and discussion.
  • Soilborne Diseases: Monsters Underneath the Bed (Category 206) - Dr. Lee Miller - Purdue University - Soilborne turfgrass diseases are particularly difficult to diagnose and manage because the pathogens subversively infect and damage roots well before plant symptoms arise. This seminar will describe the soil environment in correlation with the biology and epidemiology of the pathosystem of soilborne diseases infecting cool-season turfgrasses. The course will also explain the crucial aspects of each disease cycle, highlighting where disease control measures can most effectively impede pathogen development.

Wednesday, December 4, 2024


  • Registration and Breakfast


  • Keynote Speaker - Dennis Lyon - Retired Superintendent - Reflections, Career Reflections on Leadership and Life - A presentation on 12 reflective concepts based on 50 years of experience. These concepts will help stimulate the audience to address leadership and life's issues, strategically. thoughtfully and successfully.


  • Kevin Ross - OnCourse Turf Solutions - 50 Years In The Golf Industry
  • Jeff Fowler - Tip Top Turf Solutions, LLC - Field Prep At The Little League Baseball Complex - The fields at LLWS are more than you might think! We will take a look at the complex and the year round care of the complex.
  • Kayla Kipp - Nemacolin Woodlands Resort - Reel Grinding/Mower Set-Up - Bring questions as we explore a brief overview of why we grind and how we can maintain an edge longer including returning reels to true cylinders, bed knife angles and backlapping. Set up of cutting units will include order, what we are looking for during setup, reel tracking, paying attention to "where are we?" in relation to behind center distance, recommended set up versus optional, reel maintenance and choosing the right reel for the task.
  • Brennan Babbit - Tree Source - (Spanish) Proper Pruning & Removal Techniques
  • Dr. Tony Koski - Colorado State University - Stupid Things That Turf People Do To Trees (Category 207)
  • Brian Keegan - Irrigation Design For Energy Efficiency


  • Dr. Lee Miller - Purdue University - Golf: Can Both Foliar & Soilborne Diseases Be Controlled With One Stone? - Soilborne diseases are the most often diagnosed disease on golf course putting greens. High amounts of post-application irrigation (0.125-0.25 inch/A) are recommended to drive the fungicide into the target zone, but what is the benefit, if any, for control of foliar diseases such as dollar spot and brown patch? Research conducted at U. of Missouri and continued at Purdue University gets to this question. This discussion will center on these findings, including implications for the development of fungicide resistant populations and overall disease management with broad spectrum fungicides.
  • Sun Roesslein, Mark Razum, Ryan Newman, Corey Chapman - Sports Turf Panel
  • Michael North - Colorado Golf & Turf - Turf Equipment Operation & Diagnostics - Introduction to current manufacturers such as John Deere, Toro, Jacobsen and others. Common equipment and their uses as well as diagnostic tips and common issues. Introduction to reel and bedknife grinding as well as relief grind purposes and explanation.
  • Robert Gonzales - Nutrien Solutions - (Spanish) Foliar vs. Granular
  • Dr. Roch Gaussoin - University of Nebraska - Pre, Post or Both for Better Annual Grass Control (Category 206) - Herbicide options for annual grass control include preemergence and postemergence. Traditionally, applicators have used two preemergence applications in the Spring and postemergence “rescue” treatment if needed. Is there a more efficacious approach? Research results will be presented to show advantageous of multiple scenarios for optimal annual grass control.


  • Turf Industry Trade Show Open


  • Lunch Served on Trade Show Floor


  • Dr. Roch Gaussoin - University of Nebraska - It’s About Tine(s) - For organic matter management on golf greens, “dilution is the solution” has become the mantra. Straightforward in concept and complex in implementation, topdressing becomes reliant on cultivation, to ensure sand is getting into the profile efficiently. Common sense and recent research have indicated that tine choice is key to optimizing sand placement into the rootzone. Results of a comprehensive evaluation of tines and dilution impact, green speed, surface firmness and other greens performance criteria will be presented with practical use recommendations.
  • Jeff Fowler - Tip Top Turf Solutions, LLC - Prioritizing Your Resources - With limited capital in our budget, prioritizing our spending is of the utmost importance. This talk will look at different aspects of turf management and help you to prioritize your investments.
  • Kayla Kipp - Nemacolin Woodlands Resort - Small Motors Maintenance - Small engine maintenance will include recommended service, lubricants and service intervals. I will also touch on dyes, oil weights/viscosity and the way operating conditions can effect them. This will also include filters, spark plugs, electrical components and carburetors.
  • Dr. Kevin Frank - Michigan State University - Comparing Soil Testing Philosophies
  • Kyle Jones - NDS - Proper Drainage Installation Training
  • TBD - (Spanish) Irrigation


  • De-Turfing Reception - Trade Show Floor


  • Robert Gonzales - Nutrien Solutions - Foliar vs. Granular
  • Eric Pollock - G&S Solutions - Modifying Existing Native Soil Fields - Presentation discussing rootzone modification to increase performance of the field.
  • Kendall Smith - AriensCo - Electrification Of Equipment In The Commercial Landscape Industry - Discussion of how technology and legislation are shaping the future of power equipment in the landscape industry.
  • Meg Kruger - Pioneer Athletics - In the Room Where it Happens: Earning a Seat at the Table - Groundskeepers securing a seat at the table directly impacts the day to day operations of our industry. How do you earn a seat in the room where it happens? How can we help direct the conversations about our fields and facilities? How do you explain the WHY to money movers? In this session we explore the benefits of being invited to the table, how to combat misconceptions through visibility, and how to justify costs and labor.
  • Dr. Lee Miller - Purdue University - Lawn: Diagnosing Lawn Problems Often Requires Some Digging (Category 206)- While fewer diseases may afflict turfgrass when the mower blade is raised, several problems can still raise eyebrows when damaging a lawn or sports field. This seminar will discuss the thought process in diagnosing issues on higher cut turfgrasses, including how to differentiate between true diseases and abiotic disorders, which may require a closer look at soil conditions and some inquiry of your clientele.
  • Edwin Arco - MUSCO Lighting - TBD


  • Dr. Kevin Frank - Michigan State University - Diagnosing Turf Problems and Troublesome Pests (Category 206)
  • Jeff Fowler - Tip Top Turf Solutions, LLC - The Only Thing Fair In Life Is A Ball Hit Between 1st & 3rd - A fun look at the way we approach field care. We will look at my favorite memes and use them to help guide us though this thing called life!
  • River Davis - Agri-Inject - Precision Fertigation/Chemigation: Boosting Turf Health & Economic Efficiency - Join us for an in-depth look at how precision fertigation and chemigation can elevate your turf management practices and improve economic efficiency. This session will explain the technology behind Agri-Inject systems, highlighting their role in delivering exact amounts of nutrients and chemicals directly to the turf root zone. Attendees will leave with a clear understanding of how to implement these techniques to achieve better turf health and operational efficiency.
  • Dr. Tony Koski - Colorado State University - Conversion To Natives (Category 207)
  • Meg Kruger - Pioneer Athletics - Visibility Matters - Dive into how authenticity, consistency and Turf Twitter can elevate your career while simultaneously making a positive impact on your crew and the industry. Discover how branding and social media can help you recruit new employees, justify costs and labor and build a portfolio of your skills. Main takeaways of this session include: Social media recruiting for sports field managers, how to build a personal and crew portfolio using social media and branding and how to utilize visibility to earn yourself a seat at the table.

Thursday, December 5, 2024


  • Registration and Breakfast


  • Pesticide Applicators Core Credits - Lisa Blecker - Colorado State University - Core Credit CEU will provide all 7 core commercial applicator credits: Use of Pesticides: Label Reading Applicators will learn how to read the label and where to find the information they need to know when making pesticide applications. This will include; Restricted use statement, Brand name, active ingredient list, Ag Use Requirements box, non-ag use requirements box, mode of action, formulation, directions for use, and precautionary statements. Pesticides and their Families: Mode Of Action (MOA) Applicators will learn about what Mode of Action is and why it’s important to pay attention to the modes of action they are using on their crop/site. Applicators will receive resources they can use to help them make more informed and effective pesticide application decisions. Applicators will learn how to use the label to help them identify the mode of action they are using and how to make effective pesticide applications. Environmental Protection: Endangered Species Act (ESA) Applicators will learn about the new EPA requirements regarding the Endangered Species Act and pesticide applications. Applicators will learn how they can use the label and other resources to comply with these new requirements. Applicator Safety: Respiratory Protection Applicators will learn how to properly use respirators and comply with all respirator training/use requirements. This includes; how to find the proper respirator for the job and applicator, how to complete a medical evaluation, how to complete a fit test, and how to complete and document respirator training. Applicators will learn how to read and interpret label PPE statements as they pertain to respirators. Public Safety: Pesticide Spills and Emergency Response Applicators will learn how to prevent spills and emergencies. In case of emergency, applicators will learn proper spill clean-up procedures, as well as first aid and emergency procedures. Applicators will learn how to find emergency and safety information on the label, SDS, and workplace resources.


  • John Scott - Department of Agriculture - Dept. of Agriculture Regulations and Changes (Category LR)
  • Whitney Cranshaw - Colorado State University - What You Need To Know About Japanese Beetle (Category 207) - Japanese beetle is a relatively recent addition to the Colorado landscape but in the past decade has proved to be capable of seriously damaging a wide variety of commonly grown landscape plants in many areas of Colorado. A better understanding of the habits of this insect are fundamental to how best manage it in yards and gardens. A wide variety of methods have been developed to help control Japanese beetle, including cultural controls, trapping, biological controls and selective chemical controls. Collectively the appropriate use these can provide an integrated pest management plan to best control this insect.
  • Deryn Davidson - CSU Extensions - Waterwise Updates For Lawns & Landscapes - Trying to keep track of all the recent legislation passed about water use and landscapes? In this session we'll cover where our water comes from, why we're running out, and the new laws put in place to steer CO toward water conservation through appropriate landscape practices.
  • Yedil Hunde - Barenbrug Seed - Choosing The Right Species For The Right Job! - Choosing the right species for the right job! This will focus primarily on drought. I will use data we have from our studies in New Mexico to emphasize that for traits like drought tolerance, there is much to be gained by opting for the right species in the first place rather than opting for marginal differences within species.
  • TBD - Loveland Products - PH Buffering


  • Brad Meyer - HydroPoint Data Systems/Spencer Jordan - DBC Irrigation - Irrigation Management Utilizing Sensor Technology - Wind, pressure, flow, rain, soil moisture, temperature and more can all be monitored, measured and managed. Utilizing these types of sensors can give data for curious minds, reduce costs, save property damage, produce healthier landscapes and reduce liability. In this course we will explore these types of sensors and discuss possible applications. Please bring your thoughts and questions for this interactive topic.
  • Kaitlyn Quincy - SePro - Managing Aquatic Systems - This presentation covers the basics of managing aquatic systems including nuisance plants, algae, and water quality. The speaker will cover plant and algae identification for common species in Colorado and methods of control.
  • Dave Phipps - USGA - USGA Update
  • Colm Allan - Corteva - Weed Management Program in Turf: IPM Strategies to Keep Turf Weed Free (Category 206) - I will be discussing weed management strategies for turf; including but not limited to: cultural approaches, biological controls, and chemical control.
  • Dr. James Hempfling - ENVU - Maintaining Root Health During Stress Periods


  • Jeff Butler - Spears Manufacturing - Getting the Most Out Of Your PVC Pipe, Valves, Fittings & Cement - Getting The Most Out of Your PVC Pipe, Valves and Fittings - Proper installation and repair practices with PVC pipe, valves and fittings can combine to create a solid, trouble free and long lasting irrigation system. This class will teach what the most common PVC failures are and how to avoid them. This seminar includes: Understanding thrust and gradual or catastrophic fitting failure, how water velocity affects your systems longevity, proper cementing practices, cyclic fatigue in PVC fittings, proper installation of female threads to prevent splitting, proper thrust blocking, expansion and contraction in PVC pipe, and when to use Schedule 40, Schedule 80 and “Class” pipe, Proper use of Slip Fix Repair fittings,
  • Kurt George - Hylio/Dustin Polasek - Nutrien Solutions - Spraying With Drones
  • Dr. James Hempfling - ENVU - TBD
  • Taylor Turner - Numerator Technologies - Improving Product Efficacy - We will discuss the importance of spray tank acidification by preventing alkaline hydrolysis and better penetration by using soil surfactants.
  • John Reilly - Resort at Longboat Key Club, FLA - Metrics For Golf Course Management


  • Colm Allan - Corteva - Turfgrass Diseases (Category 206) How to Identify, Mitigate, and Manage Through Sound IPM Strategies - Pathology 101 – i.e. disease development, hosts, environments, pathogen, etc. Disease Identification Cultural control practices (i.e. irrigation schedules, mowing, fertilization, traffic, etc.) Chemical control: preventative vs. reactive
  • Taylor Turner - Numerator Technologies - Management Of Turf Under Poor Irrigation Sources (Category 206) - The top 1.5 to 2 inches of turf soil profiles will mimic the irrigation water sources. If the water sources are high in alkalinity, calcium bicarbonates and sodium. Turf grasses will be affected by poor water infiltration, penetration, calcium bicarbonate and sodium toxicities. The seminar will be covering strategies to improve water movement into soil profiles to reduce amount of irrigation applied. In situations of calcium bicarbonate, sodium toxicity will be discussing management strategies to improve soil structure, improve overall fertility of turf grasses and increasing turf quality.
  • TBD - Loveland Products - Adjuvents / Growth Regulators
  • Whitney Cranshaw - Colorado State University - Ever Changing Challenges Of Insect Problems (Category 207)
  • John Reilly - Resort at Longboat Key Club, FLA - TBD