October 31 – November 3, 2013
Marriott Convention Center, Burbank, California
Before returning home from my successful teaching tour throughout Australia, I stopped in California for the 36th annual convention of the Golden State Bonsai Federation, one of the best in the United States. Many old friends were met and surprised to see me here, especially in a boot cast and on my scooter for my sixth broken foot. I told them, just think what I cold have done if both my feet were not broken!
The convention started on Halloween and there was a special “Halloween Costume Bus Tour Party” in Hollywood passing many historic movie/TV studios while watching thousands of Californians enjoying the holiday, in all types of costumes. Some were traditional, many were unusual while most were exotic and revealing. Everyone in our group dressed up and we all had a great time watching the people on our private double decker bus complete with “refreshments.” Some of our group’s costumes were creative, but we all wanted to see which one of the “Kathy Shaners” was the real one, as there were several. Can you tell which one is the real Kathy?
Workshops, seminars and demonstrations and a huge benefit raffle are customary for these conventions, but this convention was different with the theme “Bonsai Artist Studio: Outside the Box” where the three headliners, Peter Warren, David DeGroot and Suthin Sukolosovisit presented several programs in a studio setting as well as demonstrations.
There were four exhibits, the convention bonsai exhibit, a competitive bonsai exhibit, a suiseki exhibit and a special display of Japanese suiseki & chrysanthemum stones from the private collection of Tom and Hiromi Elias. A few of the bonsai and suiseki which were interesting to me follow.
My next stop is finally home sweet home for a couple of weeks before leading my biannual bonsai tour to Japan with Kora Dalager.