Caitlin Maddock-Bahr | Social Media & Digital Strategy Manager
Pondemonium 2019 was in full swing as we set up shop for a one-day In The Trenches Tour truck stop with landscapers from all over the world and, let me tell you, this event is not one you want to miss if you’re in the water feature business.
Pondemonium is an annual Aquascape Inc. event that features not only opportunities to network with landscapers and influencers from across the globe, but also classroom and hands-on training for all levels of landscapers. (Check out the work of the novice teams this year!)
This year’s theme was “I Love My Job,” and was centered on two key components (besides earning a healthy profit margin on every project you do): having pride in your work and understanding the impact your work has on others. Our Caterpillar team was there to provide equipment support for training sessions, in addition to our In The Trenches Tour Next Generation Cat® Mini Excavator experiences, but we all felt the overwhelming presence of the “I Love My Job” mantra. Here’s why:
First of all, Aqualand (Aquascape’s headquarters, where the event was hosted) is a living testament to this. They truly live it – both inside and out. If you ever have the opportunity to visit, I promise it won’t disappoint. You’ll get a taste of all kinds of water features that Certified Aquascape Contractors (CACs) can install, as well as a feel for the proud and fun-loving culture they’ve built within their team.
Over “in the trenches,” we had the chance to talk to hundreds of experienced operators as they took our Next Generation Cat Mini Excavator challenges. In fact, Tommy J. of Mr. J’s Tree Service holds what I believe will be the fastest time in the Stick Steer competition of 0:57 – prove me wrong! In between the heated competitions, we had some great discussions about what types of equipment are right for the jobs they do, demonstrating proper techniques for things like strapping and lifting large landscaping rocks, when to rent vs. buy, and how new features and technology of Cat equipment will impact not only their productivity and efficiency, but also the quality of their work.
Equipment is a big investment, so it better be giving you a big payoff in the long run. And seeing is believing – it was great to have our machines right there in the thick of the advanced water feature build to really highlight the value of the right machines for specific jobs.
There are many reasons why people employ landscapers: beautification, improving the function of a yard space, land maintenance, etc. Water features also have their purposes, well beyond the fact that they are pleasing to the eye and to the mind. Speak with any of the CAC artists on site at Pondemonium and you’ll hear them talk about taking inspiration from nature to bring it to your doorstep, enhancing local ecosystems and attracting/sustaining natural wildlife, creating sight and sound barriers to the hustle and bustle of busy streets nearby, fighting climate change by reducing the ambient temperature of a space, raising the value of your real estate, and of course creating an entertainment space for friends and family to enjoy together. Every single one of them is focused on how the job they do impacts their clients as well as the environment.
Aquascape’s CEO, Greg Wittstock (The Pond Guy), brought several influencers to the event who were on hand to talk even more with landscapers about the impact of their work. Here are just a few:
What’s really rewarding about attending and supporting events like Pondemonium is connecting with our customers who love their jobs as much as we love ours here at Caterpillar. We know that you consider your work an art – and you should! The best thing for us at the end of the day is seeing what you create and how you shape and build the world around us. It’s our privilege to be part of that, and our Next Generation equipment has truly been inspired by you. Because you’re the ones out there digging ponds, building waterfalls and shaping the land. I hope you get a chance to join us for our In The Trenches Tour to see exactly what we’re bringing to the table.
PS – Save the date for Pondemonium 2020 – August 26-29.
Social Media & Digital Strategy Manager
Caitlin Maddock-Bahr exercises her storytelling expertise as a social media & digital strategy manager. In this role, she not only helps Caterpillar connect with their audience, but helps customers connect with the brand.