April 3, 2020
Klaas Sikkema
Klaas Sikkema
Landscape Ontario’s Congress trade show and conference continues to improve year after year. The challenge to constantly improve the event and offer new experiences to both exhibitors and visitors falls largely onto the shoulders of the LO Show Committee. This seasoned group of volunteers bring their expertise, passion and experience — ranging from veterans to those in the early stages of a career. This issue, we sat down with Show Committee volunteer and Alumni member Klaas Sikkema, from Waterloo, Ont.

Why did you get involved with the LO Show Committee?
About 26 years ago, I was involved with LO’s Waterloo Chapter and because of that, Bob Adams asked me to be a part of the Congress Committee. I liked the fact that Congress not only focuses on the practical aspect, but the educational aspects as well, and it was fun to work with.

How did you get involved in this profession?
I am not a landscaper. Our member company served the landscaping industry by building aluminum dump bodies, truck bodies and trailers. We would attend landscape shows to display our product and our main source of income came from landscapers.

What do you enjoy most about volunteering?
I really enjoy the atmosphere of everyone wanting to step in and help out.

“Use your talents to the best of your ability to further the landscape profession, and don’t be shy. Give your opinion because it matters.”
— Klaas Sikkema

What advice do you have for people who may want to volunteer?
Use your talents to the best of your ability to further the landscape profession, and don’t be shy. Give your opinion because it matters.

What do you get out of volunteering?
I get a lot of personal satisfaction out of volunteering. The committee members and staff truly give me the feeling of being appreciated. Volunteering also gives me the opportunity to meet many new and interesting people.

What are your thoughts on the Congress 10 years from now?
In 10 years, I would like to see Congress expand into the North Building located at the site. It would also be great to see more hands-on, interactive exhibits, especially to show off the skills of our profession to attract the younger generation.

What is your favourite part of Congress?
I worked on the New Product Showcase for many years, because like most people who visit the show, I enjoy seeing what is new. I also enjoy working at the main entrance to the show, where I can meet all sorts of people and help them with any problems
or questions.

What is your favourite book and why?
The Bible. It has everything I need to know in it.
For more information about Congress, visit LOcongress.com.
LO members interested in participating on the Show Committee can contact Heather MacRae, Show Manager, at hmacrae@landscapeontario.com.