Wild horses couldn't keep college and university recreation professionals away from Louisville, KY, April 4-8 for the 2006 National Intramural-Recreational Sports Association (NIRSA) Annual Conference & Recreational Sports Exposition. The show will bring together a network of professional, student and associate members from the recreational sports field for five days of educational sessions, networking opportunities, visits with manufacturers — and a little horsing around.

NIRSA's last visit to Louisville was back in 1997.

“Collegiate recreational sports are huge in this area of the country with a large concentration of NIRSA members and schools,” says Katherine Otten, NIRSA marketing assistant. “Louisville is also where our founder, William Wasson, grew up and went to high school and college. So, it's a bit of a homecoming.”

More than 120 exhibitors will showcase their products and services including 14 architects/consultants, eight online/software providers, six flooring/floor products companies, two lighting firms, three scoreboard manufacturers and 20 fitness equipment companies. Otten expects the show, which will be at the Kentucky International Convention Center, to draw about 2,000 attendees.

Events at the show range from education sessions on everything from facility management to research and marketing to social events such as the NIRSA dance party and bowling from 9 p.m. to 2 a.m. on Wednesday night (yes, 2 a.m.!), to member committee and business meetings.

Also, be sure to check out the show's guest speakers. The keynote address by Dr. Janet Lapp, a former professor, researcher, clinician and registered nurse, will guide attendees through how to stay focused, positive and productive despite challenges. She will deliver her keynote titled, “A Positive Spin,” on Tuesday, April 4. Dr. Lapp is also a licensed clinical psychologist, creator and host of the award-winning CBS series “Keep Well” and author of three best-selling books: Dancing with Tigers, Plant your Feet Firmly in Mid-Air and Positive Spin.

Other invited speakers include educator, author and professor Dr. Dennis Kimbro, whose talk, “Welcome to Leadership Skills for the 21st Century!,” will touch upon concepts introduced in his three books: Think & Grow Rich: A Black Choice, Daily Motivations for African American Success; What Keeps Me Standing, and What Makes the Great Great: Strategies for Extraordinary Achievement. Professional speaker Patti Holmes' sessions, “No Dog, No Pony — Just You!” and “Inspiring Tomorrow's Leaders Today: Your Leadership Legacy,” will help enhance leadership skills. Carol Price's talk, “The Hero in All of Us,” will highlight the peak performer in each person while her two-part session titled, “Presenting the Image of Competency” addresses how to maintain your composure in meetings while making your point.

Nancy Hunter Denney will speak on “Taking Care of Business: Motivating Strategies for Life,” which addresses bringing back balance into your life. In her second session, “Zing! Your Life and Professional Leadership,” she will share her insights to increase your potential influence and professionalism. Carol Kennedy will address the group on “The Future of Fitness,” an explanation of the 2006 ACSM guidelines and what lies ahead in terms of how to effectively enhance healthy lifestyles through fitness/wellness programming.

And if you can't wait until April to experience Louisville in the spring (the average April high for the city is 67 degrees), just hold your horses. It'll be here before you know it.

Schedule of Events (as of Feb. 13, 2006)

Tuesday, April 4

7:30 a.m. - 6 p.m.
Golf tournament

8 a.m. - 6 p.m.
Pre-conference workshops and trip

Noon - 5:30 p.m.
Career opportunities center

5 p.m. - 6 p.m.
Spouse/guest welcome

5:30 p.m. - 6:30 p.m.
New member welcome

5:30 p.m. - 6:30 p.m.
Presenters' orientation

7 p.m. - 9 p.m.
Opening general session

9:15 p.m. - 11:15 pm.
Welcome social

Wednesday, April 5

7:30 a.m. - 11:30 a.m.
Career opportunities center

8 a.m. - 9 a.m.
Budget and strategic map review

8 a.m. - 10 a.m.
Present with Pizzazz by Dr. Janet Lapp

8 a.m. - 11:30 a.m.
Educational sessions

11:30 a.m. - 4 p.m.
Recreational sports expo grand opening

12:30 p.m. - 1:30 p.m.
New committee chair meeting

12:30 p.m. - 2 p.m.
Expo PM workout

1 p.m. - 2 p.m.
T-shirt exchange

2 p.m. - 4 p.m.
Student business meeting

2:30 p.m. - 4 p.m.
Educational sessions

2:30 p.m. - 4 p.m.
Welcome to Leadership Skills for the 21st Century by Dr. Dennis Kimbro

2:30 p.m. - 4 p.m.
The Future of Fitness by Carol Kennedy

4:30 p.m. - 6:30 p.m.
Regional business meetings

7:30 p.m. - midnight
People of color social

9 p.m. - 2 a.m.
NIRSA dance party or bowling

Thursday, April 6

7 a.m. - 8 a.m.
Expo workout

7:30 a.m. - 10:30 a.m.
Career opportunities center

8 a.m. - 10:30 a.m.
Educational sessions

9:15 a.m. - 10:30 a.m.
The Hero in All of Us by Carol Price

10:30 a.m. - 3 p.m.
Recreational sports exposition

11:30 a.m. - 1 p.m.
New committee meetings

Noon - 1:30 p.m.
Past presidents' lunch

1 p.m. - 2 p.m.
Expo PM workout

1 p.m. - 2:30 p.m.
Presenting the Image of Competency, Part 1 by Carol Price

1 p.m. - 5:30 p.m.
Educational sessions

1 p.m. - 5:30 p.m.
Career opportunities center

2:45 p.m. - 3:45 p.m.
Presenting the Image of Competency, Part 2 by Carol Price

6:30 p.m. - 9:30 p.m.
Theme night

Friday, April 7

7 a.m. - 8 a.m.
Fun run

7:45 a.m. - 10 a.m.
Career opportunities center

8 a.m. - 9 a.m.
No Dog, No Pony - Just You! By Patti Holmes

8 a.m. - 10:30 a.m.
Educational sessions

9:15 a.m. - 10:30 a.m.
Inspiring Tomorrow's Leaders Today by Patti Holmes

11 a.m. - 12:30 p.m.
Annual business meeting (check-in begins at 10:30 a.m.)

12:30 p.m. - 2:30 p.m.
Take a student to lunch

2:30 p.m. - 3:45 p.m.
Taking Care of Business by Nancy Hunter Denney

2:30 p.m. - 5:30 p.m.
Educational sessions

2:30 p.m. - 5:30 p.m.
Career opportunities center

4 p.m. - 5:30 p.m.
Zing! Your Life and Professional Leadership by Nancy Hunter Denney

7 p.m. - 11 p.m.
Independent socials

Saturday, April 8

8:45 a.m. - Noon
Career opportunities center

9 a.m. - 11:30 a.m.
Educational sessions

1 p.m. - 3:30 p.m.
Educational sessions

6 p.m. - 10:30 p.m.
Honor award banquet

COMPANY Booth
Active Community Solutions 724
Aerobics & Fitness Assoc. of America (AFAA) 624
Spalding/American Athletic, Inc. 632
American College of Sports Medicine 828
American Council on Exercise (ACE) 225
Aquatic Design Group 424
AssignByWeb 1125
Assoc. of Outdoor Recreation & Education - AORE 332
Athletic Business Publications, Inc. 1026
Athletica 1208
Big Ass Fan Co 1012
Body Masters, Inc. 500
BroadcastVision 912
BSN Sports 1037
C C Creations, Inc. 725
Cannon Design 821
Cat Eye Company, Ltd./Source Distributors 416
Clough Harbour Sports 304
Collegiate Golf Alliance 729
Collegiate Pacific Sporting Goods 213
Connor Sport Court International 824
Counsilman/Hunsaker & Associates 708
CourtClean 425
Covermaster, Inc. 1025
CSI Software 625
Cybex 600
Daktronics, Inc. 1024
EFI Sports Medicine 100
Eldorado Climbing Walls/Franklin Handholds 621
Engineered Treatment Systems 1112
Entre Prises Climbing Walls 432
ESPN Fundraising Program 337
Eversan, Inc. 524
EZ Facility.Com, Inc. 807
F & S Partners, Inc. 809
FieldTurf Tarkett 1209
Fitness Business Pro/Primedia Business 614
Frontier Pro Shop 825
Full Swing Golf 532
Gilbane Building Company 933
Goalsetter Systems, Inc. 921
Gopher Sport 1200
GymWipes - 2XL Corporation 620
Hastings & Chivetta Architects, Inc. 713
Hubbell Lighting, Inc. 220
Human Kinetics Publishers 234
Innova Disc Golf 328
International Court Soccer, Inc. 706
Keiser Corporation 1100
Kwik Goal Ltd. 718
Life Fitness 200
Life Measurement, Inc. 529
Lyon Workspace Products 336
Magnum Fitness Systems 400
Massachusetts Institute of Technology 1114
Mats, Incorporated 219
Microfit Inc. 1104
Midwest Sporting Goods Dist., Inc. 429
Mikasa Sports USA 1121
Missouri Turf Paint 333
MMI-Montgomery Marketing Service, Inc. 212
Mondo USA 1213
Moody-Nolan, Inc. 321
mtvU - University Relations 832
MultiSite Solutions 433
Musco Sports-Lighting 1017
National Amateur Dodgeball Association 1028
National Council on Strength & Fitness 1125
Nautilus 300
Nemato Corp. 1124
Neptune-Benson, Inc. 820
Nevco Scoreboard Company 721
Nicros Climbing Walls 736
NIRSA Insurance 1021
North West Rubber 929
Paddock Industries 833
Paramount Fitness Corporation 900
Polar Electro, Inc. 712
Power Lift 512
Power Systems 812
Precor, Inc. 1000
Prep Illustrated, Inc. 717
Pro Grass LLC 405
RDG Planning & Design 525
Recreation Management 716
Recreational Solutions 1033
Recreonics Inc. 813
RenoSys Corporation 924
Ripken Quickball 837
Robbins Sport Surfaces 1016
Sasaki Associates Inc. 428
Schelde North America, LLC 700
Signature Fencing & Flooring Systems 308
Sink Combs Dethlefs, P.C. 732
Sports Imports, Inc 1020
Sprinturf 805
Star Trac 312
Strive - Smart Strength 517
Sunflower Marketing 1106
Texon II 324
The BACCHUS Network 628
The Collaborative Inc. 409
The Court Company 925
The University Network, LLC 526
The.Arbiter.Net 715
TMP Associates, Inc. 1120
True Fitness Technology Inc. 800
TrueBounce, Inc. 325
United States Handball Association 728
United States Masters Swimming 1221
United States Tennis Association (USTA) 518
USA Hockey InLine 936
USA Triathlon 819
Vermont Systems, Inc. 920
Water Technology, Inc. 612
Wilson Indoor Racquet Sports 817
Wilson Sporting Goods Co. 815
Woodway USA 412
Worldwide Specialty Advertising 306
WTW Architects 1029