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Hey, all!

We are working on the Seminar schedule for next year's show, and we are pretty excited about some of the ideas we're coming up with, but there are only a few of us here, and many more of you, so why not ask your opinion?

If there are things that you'd like to learn about as a cottage owner/renter, please post your thoughts. If you want to know something about what we've done in the past, see the 2008 seminar topics for Detroit and Grand Rapids by clicking the links.

Thank you for contributing to our community of Cottage & Lakefront Living!

Derek Lancioni - ShowSpan, Inc.

Tags: Cottage, Education, Feedback, Seminar, Topic

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I hope you will promote energy efficient cottages/lakefront homes and renewable energy at that show. Lakeside properties offer excellent solar potential and in some cases, wind energy also......
I agree with the Hybrid Home Guy. Cottages and the cottage-life lends itself perfectly to solar power. There are also some solar boats coming out now ... talk about a perfect way to use solar. Also, I feel that people are really warming up to the idea of residential wind generators. They just need info on them.

One other idea to pursue would be prefab cottages. Have you heard of the company Cottage in a Day? Here's a link to an article on them.
Yeah, I actually talked to Cottage in a Day last week about exhibiting in the show, and they are very interested. I also discovered them around the same time I read this awesome article, not really cottage-related, but still pretty cool - http://tinyurl.com/3kw9ne
Another great pre-fab product: Weehouses made by Alchemy Architects of Minneapolis. Before I bought my little bungalow, I was seriously considering one. Here's a link to their portfolio slideshow: http://weehouse.com/flash/SFWA_index.html#/intro/
Information on native landscaping and reducing or eliminating lawns would be helpful. Whether you live on the lake or not, grass is not an enviro-smart choice. Native groundcovers, shrubs, and trees have wildlife value, require little or no watering, and filter pollutants before they enter the water. Here are a few tips for getting started:
Keep the Green in Your Landscaping
Also check out an excellent book called The Landscaping Revolution by Andy Wasowski.
I agree with Diane. A regional book I often use for reference: Landscaping with Native Plants of Michigan by Lynn M. Steiner.
What's new in the water ... docks, kayaks, small runabouts that have greener engine emissions, update on zebra mussels, wet suits, amphibious shoes ... not that it should become a boat show, but a nice combo would be good.
I think that many people would like some basic info about how to choose a rental management company or get some advise on if they should use one. Some like to, others may not. Soem have never rented theeir cottage and may have ears about it, but if they get the information, they may be able to make some money by renting their place. Exit Realty of Elk Rapids just started our rental management prgram and there are others who do the same, too. It would be beneficial to those interested in knowing how it works and maybe bring more business to some of our small communities if we have more rentals to offer to our tourists in the small towns.

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