LAS VEGAS - ISH-North America organizers are promising attendees a comprehensive learning experience.

LAS VEGAS - With more than 50 seminars, 400 exhibitors and a range of special events, ISH-North America organizers are promising attendees a comprehensive learning experience.

Following last year's first North American ISH show - which is sometimes called the International Trade Show for Kitchen and Bath, Plumbing, PVF, Heating and Air Conditioning - in Toronto, which attracted more than 11,000, show organizers said they expect to see even greater numbers this year.

"Las Vegas is considered one of the top destination cities in the world and our research indicates contractors, wholesalers, engineers and architects want to visit there," said Neil Stalker of Messe Frankfurt Inc., ISH-NA show manager. "We're especially excited about the strong support we're seeing from the Western states, which represent some of the largest markets and fastest-growing communities in the U.S.

"Visitors also can expect to see some unique and cutting-edge products from overseas," Stalker added. "In addition to groups of exhibitors from Italy, Germany and China, we're bringing a SmartHouse booth that will spotlight the plumbing and heating systems from a state-of-the-art home constructed for ISH-Frankfurt - the original and largest ISH show - earlier this year."

Seminar programs

A major change from 2002 is the introduction of seminar "tracks," which allow attendees to select related topics of interest more easily, according to organizers. Topics include hydronics; HVAC; kitchen and bath; plumbing, pipes, valves and fittings; environmental systems; and business management/marketing.

The seminars run Oct. 1 to Oct. 3. Attendees can customize their program by selecting from multiple tracks. Among the seminars scheduled:

In the HVAC category, James Leichter will present "How to Acquire and Retain Great Co-Workers." John Hall, an editor with The Air Conditioning, Heating & Refrigeration News, will speak on "Using the Media to Promote a Positive Business Image." Gunther Mertz will present "Thermal-Driven Air Conditioning Systems."

Organizers say the environmental systems seminar series is ideal for anyone wanting to learn about the "green" construction movement. "Selling Green Beyond Marketing" will be presented by Rick Fedrizzi, formerly of Carrier Corp., and now a director of the World Green Building Council. Additional environmental seminars will cover carbon monoxide, mold, Legionnaires' disease and bacterial growth in water. A panel discussion on water conservation in plumbing in also planned.

The plumbing/PVF track will feature Don Arnold, author of the College of Product Knowledge series, and a contributor to Supply House Times, a sister publication of SNIPS. Arnold will present "What makes it Tick? The Inside Story of Newer Plumbing Technologies."

Julius Ballanco, a board member of the American Society of Plumbing Engineers and longtime columnist in Plumbing & Mechanical and PM Engineer, will talk in two seminars: "Major Code Revision on Drainage and Venting" and "Water and Backflow Plumbing Code Update." Supply House Times editor Jim Olsztynski will moderate a panel discussion, "Code Wars: Why the Confusion Continues."

The planned seminars on hydronics/water heating will feature two experts. Plumbing & Mechanical and PM Engineer writer John Siegenthaler will present "Cures for Short-Cycling in Hydronic Heating Systems," and Paul Pollets will talk about "European Heating Technologies." This track also includes a panel discussion, "New Water Heaters: Installation, Use and Care."

Contractors looking for knowledge about ways to grow their businesses have several options. Plumbing & Mechanical writer Ellen Rohr, president of Benjamin Franklin Plumbing, will talk about "Easy Money: How to Stop Doing the Things that Keep You from Being Successful." Plumbing & Mechanical writer Paul Ridilla will speak at a two-part "Humaneering" employee-development seminar. Reeves Journal writer and Plumber's Success International co-founder Mike Diamond will demonstrate "Money Growth Magic." Another Reeves Journal writer, construction expert and lawyer Sam Abdulaziz, will present "An Analysis of Killer Subcontract Clauses and Hints for Subcontractors." And Plumbing & Mechanical writer Maurice Maio will speak on "Making Millions in the Service Business."

For contractors involved in kitchen and bath work, Supply House Times writer Hank Darlington will speak on "Grow Your Gross Profit Margin - Starting Today!" and "How to Manage for Showroom Success." Additional seminars will be presented on design, master baths and profits.

Registration schedule

Attendees can register 2 p.m.- 6 p.m. Sept. 29, 8 a.m. - 6 p.m. Sept. 30, 8 a.m. - 5 p.m. Oct. 1-2, and 8 a.m. - 5 p.m. Oct. 3. The exhibit hall will be open Oct. 1-3. Admission to the exhibit hall is $25, but a free pass is available online. Enter the special guest VIP code "ISHNAVIP." Call (866) 984-8016 for more information.

ISH-North America is being held in the new convention center at Mandalay Bay Resort and Casino. The facility, which opened in January, has 1.8 million feet of meeting and exhibit space, meeting rooms capable of handling up to 75 simultaneous events, ballrooms and a business service center.

On-site dining and shopping opportunities are available, including a food court, restaurant and shops adjacent to the meeting rooms and exhibit hall. Convention parking and a designated convention center entrance are available.

Connected to the exhibit hall is the special attraction Shark Reef at Mandalay Bay, a 1.6-million gallon, 90,560-square foot aquarium that supports 100 species of sharks, exotic fish, reptiles and turtles. More than 1 million visitors have explored Shark Reef during its first year of operation.

For more information on ISH-NA, call (866) 984-8016, e-mail, or visit the Web site