RECAP: St. Cloud Digital Stoneworking Expo
Jun 12, 2018
Park Industries’ Digital Stoneworking Expo in St. Cloud, MN attracted countertop fabricators and professionals from across North America. The two-day event was jam-packed with education on maximizing profitability and increasing efficiency. The two-day event was full of shop tours, real stories from fabricators with metrics, and lively discussion on the digital fabrication process.
Watch Shop Tour Highlights
Local Fabrication Shop Tours
The event began with a tour of three local fabrication shops followed by a tour and welcome reception at Park Industries® on June 6th. The tours gave attendees the chance to watch Park machines in action and opened up the discussion on different digital fabrication techniques.
1. Granite Services
The tour began at Granite Services, a shop relatable to fabricators running smaller production shops. Granite Services’ main source of production is their TITAN® CNC Fab Center. As the tour group gathered around the TITAN®, questions were spurred on maximizing productivity and bottom line profitability.
StoneCrafters was the second stop on the tour and provided a clear picture of a digitally-run, medium sized production shop. StoneCrafters specializes in producing round countertops on their TITAN® 2800. Attendees looked on as the machine routed, shaped, and polished the stone.
3. Granite-Tops, Inc.
The final stop on the tour was a large production shop, Granite-Tops. There was an excited buzz of conversation as attendees wove their way through the vast expanse of huge, organized production.
Park Industries® Tour
DSE attendees had the chance to watch more Park machinery cut, route, and jet stone in Park’s state-of-the-art training center. Attendees explored Park’s recently expanded facility with an informative tour guide explaining Park’s process and answering questions along the way.
After attendees toured the nearly 200,000 square foot expanse of Park Industries®, attendees were invited to join a BBQ and networking reception.
Hear, Share, Learn | Highlights of the DSE
Welcome | Mike Schlough, Co-President & Joan Schatz, Co-President
The Digital Stoneworking Expo opened up with a warm welcome from Co-Presidents, Mike Schlough and Joan Schatz. They introduced the history of Park Industries®, laid out the objectives of the day, and they encouraged attendees to participate in discussions to get the most out of their DSE experience.
The Countertop Industry: Past. Present. Future. | Tony Herbst, National Sales Manager
Park Industries® National Sales Manager, Tony Herbst, presented on the countertop industry trends. He shared the evolution of the countertop industry and how countertop fabrication shops can take advantage of the change for the betterment of their shop.
Evaluating Your Shop’s Performance | Rob Bromley, Park Industries® Sales Representative
Rob Bromley, Park Sales Representative, opened up the discussion on shop metrics. He engaged attendees to anonymously measure their shop productivity and processes. The assessment begins the conversation on areas of improvement.
Digital Fabrication: From Start to Finish | Moraware, Laser Products, Slabsmith
Attendees were walked through the digital fabrication process from start to finish. This included a hands-on demonstration with Moraware and Laser Products. Hypertherm, leader in waterjet technology while offering lowest cost solutions, brought fabricators up to speed with a waterjet 101 presentation.
Embrace Technology & Advance Your Business | Geoffrey Gran, The Countertop Factory Midwest
Geoffrey Gran, owner of TCF Midwest, shares his personal story and how embracing technology has helped his business thrive. If your business evolves with the changes in technology and equipment, you are leading in efficiency.
Digital 2.0 | Scott Hanes
Scott Hanes, owner of Majestic Marble & Granite, presents on the next phase to going digital. Scott is passionate about the digital fabrication process. He engaged the attendees and related his story to their situations throughout his presentation.
Our Transformation | Dave Scott
Owner of Slabworks of Montana, Dave Scott, speaks enthusiastically about the transformation his shop has undergone and how they continue to prepare for the future as they grow. Investing in your business will produce optimal results and increase your shop’s worth.
Panel Discussion | Closing Reception
During the closing reception attendees had the chance to ask questions to the DSE presenter panel. Geoffrey Gran, Scott Hanes, and Dave Scott reflected on their experiences to answer the questions. After two days of attendees touring shops, hearing real fabricator stories, and assessing their shop processes, the closing panel discussion offers a venue to reflect and start thinking about future plans.
St. Cloud Attendee Testimonials | Inside the Experience
“The ability to network and share data with other like-minded individuals is a game-changer!”
Majestic Marble & Granite
“Best event any fabricator in the country can attend. Open, honest information on how to improve your business. Love the fact that it is not about selling equipment and the focus is on process improvement.”
American Granite & Tile, Inc.
“This was a great Expo! It gave me the knowledge and drive to change for the future.”
Precision Stone Design
“I would highly recommend the DSE seminar to all fabricators whether you're thinking to transition to the digital side or have already done so. We became a digital shop four years ago and I attended this workshop to learn about the latest products and was excited to do the shop tour which Park had arranged. However, my biggest takeaway was networking & learning from the guest speakers who are successfully running their businesses. It was very insightful to learn about their strategies they implemented in alleviating the pain points we all have. I would highly recommend any fabricator to attend this workshop. The entire team at Park and member attendees are extremely helpful and will make your trip worth your while.”