• Woodworkers Seek Technology at IWF 2014

    Anticipation is building for the 2014 International Woodworking Fair, the largest woodworking show in North America. Scheduled for August 20-23 in Atlanta at the Georgia World Congress Center, show officials are expecting one of their best events in years with large crowds eager to seek out the latest in technology, supplies and education.

    Business has improved for many woodworking companies, as the economy has steadily shown signs of life and growth.

    Remodeling, steady during the downturn, continues to remain strong, and the housing market, while showing some signs of stalling after a year of marked improvement, is relatively stable. Add in the incremental but steady growth in the job market as well as the slight rise in consumer confidence in May, all indicators of an improved economic environment, and one can practically feel the energy pulsating throughout the industry as businesses look to invest in new equipment and processes and to expand their facilities in order to meet pent up and growing demand for products and to fill inventories.

    What to Expect at IWF

    The biennial event returns this year with the IWF Technology Theater, a feature that was introduced in 2012.

    A hit with attendees, the Technology Theater, located near the New Product Showcase, will feature presentations from IWF exhibitors on their new products, services and the latest technology developments in machinery and accessories.

    The New Product Showcase will be located in Building B of the Georgia World Congress Center. New products introduced since IWF 2012 will be on display throughout the show.
    The 2014 IWF Challengers Distinguished Achievement Award ceremony will take place during the show on Aug. 20 in Booth 5000 in the Building B exhibit hall. In its 24th year, 61 entries were submitted to the competition from 45 companies. Thirty-three products from 23 companies were selected as semi-finalists.

    The Challengers Award committee will narrow the field again to 20 finalists with seven winners to be named during the show.

    Always a popular component of IWF is the Education Conference, which will feature more than 50 sessions, including all-day symposiums on Aug. 19 one day prior to the show opening. A few highlights include:

    Woodworking Inventors: Creating New Products & Business Processes
    Housing Markets and the Secondary Woodworking Industry Lessons from the Downturn
    Wood Finishing...The Path to Profitability
    Door and Window
    Estimating, Pricing and Producing Successful Construction Projects
    Wood Bioenergy
    New Direction in Decorative Surfacing

    The Cabinet Makers Association and International Surface Fabricators Association also have a full slate of programs scheduled for show attendees.