Hello Everyone,

Let me start off by saying what a GREAT convention Parker was! Lots of attendance, variety of vendors, demos, and some really good food. I would like to thank all the folks who helped planned, arranged, coordinated, and ensured it all worked. It truly was a team effort with Directors, members and volunteers from the crowd all working towards a common goal..FUN!


I especially wanted to thank Nancy Bennet, Wendy Denison, Lynda Graf, Nick Lien, Pete Harper, Frank Moser and Tara from the FARE Group. I am sure I missed someone and do apologize but these are the AMAZING folks who built the gift bags, handed them out and gave presentations to the 240+ K-6 Parker Elementary school.  The kids LOVED it as well as the staff. It was nothing like they expected and were very excited for the hard work that team did and the “coolest things ever” presentations.  


I could fill several pages with all the good stuff and praise the folks who made it happen. I fully understand serving in the USAF no mission depends on one person, it takes a team. Again Directors, Members, Vendors and folks who just wanted to help all made this a success.


Now comes the hard part as they say. As much help as we had for our annual fall convention, we need 10 times more next July when we host the NTA National in Sioux Falls. Matt and Nancy Bennet have perfectly already laid out the path for us with a year (yes it has been a year already) of planning, meetings and too many hours of coordination to count (Thank you to both of them!). We know what we need to do, when it needs to be done and how it needs to be done. What we are lacking is the WHO needs to do it. We need you, your family members and as many friends as possible to help. It is time to put names to paper for who is working where and when.


I cannot stress this enough; we will never have too many volunteers. Set up will start as early as a week prior, the actual event is Thursday-Saturday and then comes the cleanup. We need to BUILD a demo area to NTA standards, get tables in place, assist vendors finding their booths and providing help getting their items there, same for tailgaters, Kids Cave volunteers, camper attendants, gate workers (our primary source of income), trap setting contest workers, ball toss set up/workers, trash detail, and all this comes AFTER setting up and ensuring things like Presidents Dinner and awards banquet are done!!!! 


If anyone of you in the Sioux Falls area knows of a landscaping company who would be willing to assist in building the demo area and get the sponsorship benefit (this area sponsored by John’s Yard workers) please let us know. It is this type of help we need in addition to manpower. Again, a TEAM effort and I know we have the right team already. YOU prove it every year at our conventions. PLEASE send your request of job and dates/times to ANY Director and we will get you, your family, friends on the master sign up list. This a great opportunity for groups (4-H, Sports team, 3M night shift, etc.) to do a bonding event and help out.  This is the first and possibly last time the NTA will come to South Dakota so lets do this in true South Dakota style, better than anyone else has!   


It is MY privilege to have the honor of serving as your President. You make it easy to represent you.


John Hopple

SDTA President