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Bench Conference and Orchid Dinner

I want to take a minute to thank ALL of the wonderful people that
took the time to explain processes and demonstrate products and
educate at the Bench Conference and Suppliers Expo!!!

I attended along with close to 40 members of the Venice Adult School

  • Jewelry Making Program. From the conference staff to the experts
    demonstrating products - everyone was supportive, informative and
    made all of us feel like we had made the right career choice when
    looking to the Jewelry Arts!

Those of you who are sitting in a foot of snow missed out on four
days of 80 degree temperatures in a location that was 15 minutes
from the beach.

A special thank you to Mike at Foredom who went out of his way to
speak to our class and to Lee Marshall who patiently let each
student sit down and try his Knew Concept Saw…also to Dave with
Allset; Vic Joyner with the coolest moldind system; Wayne Emery with
his USB Little Camera; Dick with ABI; the Fox Burr/Kyle Abrasives
guys (this was a popular booth); speaking of popular - Oliver with
Firescoff (who obliged every time I asked him to “demonstrate it for
my friend”); and the Laser Welding Demos; Conference Speakers, Joel
McFadden, Mark Grosser, and Steve Satow. Last but not least thank
you Brad Simon (and his Bench family) for being such a gracious host
and for bringing the conference to the West Coast!

The “Price is Right Game” on Friday was so much fun, and not just
because I won a prize (thanks to the Stuller table). After the
Suppliers Expo broke down on Saturday night we all met at the Orchid
Dinner. This was a really lovely evening with about 7 Orchid members
and a group of presenters who also joined us!

Lead by Brad Simon we all adjourned to the Latitude 33 Restaurant at
the Marriott…the food was good and the company even better. Joel
McFadden came with one of his apprentices (a lovely young lady,
unfortunately I can’t remmber her name), Mark Grosser (what a kick
this guy is and so talented), Steve Satow (this guy is a genius with
tools), and speaking of tools - Dave Arens, Wayne Emery (did you
ever find your “yellow flowers”?), a wonderful artist from Idaho,
Ingrid ( she does amazing stuff with antler, porcupine quills,
etc.), my “date” Deanna (an engineer by day, jeweler by night) and
presenting the “toy” of the evening (no, not his Knew Concept Saw -
a FedEx pen!) - Lee Marshall - I can’t say enough good stuff about
this guy…he has made jewelry doable for “older folks” like me and
has to be one of the friendliest guys around! Now I know that I am
missing at least two maybe three people - please don’t take it as a
slight - like I said my memory isn’t what it used to be!

Can you tell I was impressed?

Robyn Hawk