2008 Climbing Wall Summit


Photo courtesy of VerticalEndeavors.com

2008 Climbing Wall Summit

May 1-4, 2008, the Climbing Wall Association (CWA) will be hosting the second annual Climbing Wall Summit in Boulder, Colorado. Climbing gym vendors, manufacturers, and owners will gather at the Boulder Outlook Hotel for three days of workshops, roundtable discussions, and events, all with the aim of strengthening the climbing industry.

Pre-conference workshops will begin on April 29, 2008 with the Climbing Wall Instructor Certification Course, a pilot program sanctioned by the CWA and AMGA. This two and a half day course will address the basic technical skills necessary to manage an instructional program at a climbing facility and will cover general topic areas such as: client orientation and instruction; teaching general climbing skills including movement; teaching top-rope and lead belaying techniques; equipment and facility use; and rescue and emergency procedures. For more information on this course and other pre-conference offerings, visit the CWA website at climbingwallindustry.org.

This year, Phil Powers, Executive Director of The American Alpine Club, will be delivering the keynote address on the evening of May 1, 2008 with an opening reception to follow. Powers is an accomplished mountaineer and author and has many years of experience in the outdoor industry. Phil has led dozens of expeditions to South America, Alaska, and Pakistan's Karakoram Range.

In addition to the in-depth pre-conference workshops, the Summit will offer over 30 regular workshop sessions and presentations led by industry leaders. Cort Gariepy, owner of Rockwerx, and Jon Lachelt will each lead workshops focused on opening and expanding climbing gyms. Eric Curtis, owner of MetroRock, will discuss marketing strategies for climbing gyms while Ray Snead, a technology consultant, will help attendees develop web solutions specifically for climbing gyms. For the second consecutive year, attorneys Mike Helt, Charles “Reb” Gregg, and Robert Angell will provide a legal plenary session for conference attendees. With workshops ranging from risk management to media coverage, there will be something that sparks the interest of everyone.

The CWA has been fortunate enough to receive the support of 17 sponsors, facility partners, and media companies. Sponsors like Nicros, Inc. and Stratus Insurance Services Inc., have provided scholarships for conference attendees while Mountain Khakis has agreed to provide conference staff with a uniform program. Great Trango Holdings will host an evening of relaxation at The Spot Bouldering Gym where conference attendees can kick up their feet and sit back with a cold one. For the second time, Entre Prises USA and Rock & Ice Magazine have joined forces to host an evening get-together, this time at The Attic Bar and Bistro in downtown Boulder.

With so many workshops, clinics, and events, this conference is shaping up to be a great opportunity. This is the only event of its kind and in this rapidly growing industry, it is more important than ever to come together to discuss the crucial issues that every climbing gym vendor, manufacturer, owner, and customer faces. For more information about the CWA and the Climbing Wall Summit, please visit climbingwallindustry.org.