News roundup: Winner of first “Small Machines. Big Impact.” contest named

Updated Jul 15, 2017
From left to right, Tom Noble, Daryl Bridenbaugh and Eric Moores. Photo: John DeereFrom left to right, Tom Noble, Daryl Bridenbaugh and Eric Moores.
Photo: John Deere

The winner of John Deere’s first “Small Machines. Big Impact.” contest has been announced as Eric Moores, after tallying the online votes.

Moores is a high school building trades instructor in Woodbine, Iowa, and will take home a 333G compact track loader (CTL) and a WorkSite Pro bucket attachment to help him achieve his project of “Teaching Tomorrow’s Builders,” which provides hands-on learning in his high school class as well as pitching in at other community improvement projects.

“The thing I love most is building homes, and this is a wonderful opportunity to teach kids all I know,” Moores said. “Many of these kids come into the class not even knowing how to use a hammer. But through hands-on learning, they come away with skills they can use for the rest of their lives. And quite possibly, use to find lucrative and rewarding careers.”

The “Small Machines. Big Impact.” contest was created by John Deere in order to aid customers in doing good by selecting finalists with the most impactful community project idea and allowing the public to vote on the grand prize winner.

The two runners-up won yearlong leases on either a skid steer or CTL from John Deer Financial. Daryl Bridenbaugh from Ohio and his project “Building Houses and Hope” and Tom Noble from Oklahoma and his project “Field Student Success” were the two finalists.

Out of the 665 contest entries, John Deere selected its finalists based on community impact, alignment with one of the John Deere Corporate Citizenship priorities and the value a John Deere skid steer or CTL would add to the project.

Northwest Flower & Garden Show announces GardenPRO Conference 

The Northwest Flower & Garden Show will hold a new, one-day conference during its 30th annual show at the Washington State Convention Center in Seattle next year.

The GardenPRO Conference will focus on topics of interest to all professionals in the green industry from landscape architects to arborists to nursery owners. Former director of the University of Oxford Botanic Garden Timothy Walker will lead off the conference with his keynote presentation on “The Healing Power of Plants.”

The closing presentation will be conducted by Matt Walker, author of Adventure in Everything, where he will discuss “High Performance Living Every Day.”

Attendees to the GardenPRO Conference will also be able to choose from three sessions that will be held during each of the three concurrent sessions throughout the day.

The topics include:

  • “Romancing the Zone: Transplanting Life from Zone 4 to Zone 9” presented by horticulturist Bob Hyland
  • “Pitch Perfect: Polishing Your Writing Craft to Sell Your Ideas,” presented by Garden Design magazine editor Thad Orr designer and author Susan Morrison, author Mary-Kate Mackey and author and publicist Katie Elzer-Peters
  • “Aligning Your Business with Today’s Garden Trends” presented by Garden Media Group founder Suzi McCoy and creative director Katie Dubow
  • “Social Outreach: Crafting a Strategy for Increasing and Engaging Social Media Followers” presented by author Debra Prinzing, author and blogger Stephanie Rose, Corona Tools digital marketing manager Chris Sabbarese and Katie Elzer-Peters
  • “A New Garden Ethic: Cultivating Defiant Compassion for a New Garden Future” presented by Benjamin Vogt, designer and author of the upcoming book, A New Garden Ethic: Cultivating Defiant Compassion for an Uncertain Future
  • “From Meh to Wow: Take Photos to Really Sell Your Work” presented by photographer David Perry
  • “Creating a SITES Certified Garden” presented by Debra Guenther, FASLA, a 2018 Show Judge and partner at Mithun
  • “Intellectual Theft: Best Practices in Protecting Your Work and Brand” presented by attorney Mike Atkins
  • “Getting the Most From Your Professional Certifications,” with moderator Will Bailey, LICM, EcoPro, and panelists Heather Harris, CPH, owner/operator of Calluna Fine Gardening; Lisa Port, APLD designer and owner of Banyon Tree Design; and Jay Nyce, CIC, CLIA, designer and co-owner of Nyce Gardens.

The GardenPRO Conference will be held on Feb. 9, 2018, during the Northwest Flower & Garden Show which runs from Feb. 7 to 11, 2018. Attendees can register at Early registration for the first 200 attendees is $225; regular registration through Dec. 31, 2017, is $275, and late registration after Jan. 1, 2018, is $325.

Project EverGreen raises awareness for “Healthy Turf. Healthy Kids.” program

Project EverGreen has designated the week of July 16-22 as National “Health Turf. Healthy Kids.” Awareness Week to spotlight the program’s efforts to provide safe green spaces for children and communities across the country.

“Healthy Turf. Healthy Kids.” is an initiative that strives to revitalize parks and recreational green spaces in urban communities as funding cuts and shifting demographics have caused many public green spaces to become outdated and unsafe.

Aside from creating a safe place for children to play, parks and athletic fields also encourage a healthier lifestyle, promote economic growth and benefit the environment.

“Joining this initiative is an investment in a healthier, happier future for children across the country,” said Cindy Code, executive director of Project EverGreen. “Our goal is make sure that safe, modern green space is available so children can make exercise, athletics and recreation a part of their daily lives.”

Since the program’s inception, more than 1.6 million square feet of athletic and recreation green spaces have been renovated. “Healthy Turf. Healthy Kids.” has received $1 million in donation value.

To learn more about sponsoring or submitting a Healthy Turf. Healthy Kids. renovation project in your community, visit

Graphic: Project EverGreenGraphic: Project EverGreen
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