The Palm Springs Convention Center, venue for the NWFA's 16th annual convention and trade show.

PALM SPRINGS, Calif. -- Wood floor dealers, contractors, distributors, and manufacturers arrived here today for the National Wood Flooring Association’s yearly convention under cloudless blue skies and a blazing sun that pushed the thermometer close to the century mark -- unseasonably toasty for this time of year, even by the standards of Southern California’s low desert.

Whether or not the action at the NWFA’s Education Vacation convention and trade show will be as hot as the surrounding environs won’t become apparent until tomorrow, when the event gets going in earnest.

For many participants, today was the most leisurely on the convention agenda. Many hit the links of Tahquitz Creek Golf Resort for the NWFA’s annual golf tourney. If the farmer’s tans displayed by countless duffers was a valid indicator, today may have been the first spring day in the sun for many (presumably from points east and north) convention goers.

Palm Canyon Drive, this desert resort's main boulevard and business corridor.
Others embarked on an Indian Canyon Safari Hike or indulged in the Spa Experience at the Spa Hotel & Casino down the street from the Palm Springs Convention Center. Some window shopped or sipped cool drinks at the cafes that line nearby Palm Canyon Drive, the town’s primary cultural artery and main drag.

For others, particularly event organizers and trade show exhibitors, the pace was a bit more hectic. NWFA officials spent the day registering convention arrivals and generally tending to the last-minute tasks necessary to get the event off to a smooth start. Exhibitors labored throughout the sweltering afternoon setting up booths and displays. The main trade show hall was filled to capacity. As a result, some exhibitors set up shop in a sizeable -- and, thankfully, air conditioned -- tent adjacent to the main facility.

As the desert sun descended behind craggy Mt. San Jacinto to the east, bringing cooler evening temperatures, attendees convened at the Wyndham Resort Hotel adjoining the convention center for a welcome reception and an opportunity to get acquainted, touch bases with old friends and talk shop.

The convention shifts into a higher gear tomorrow. On tap for the opening session is former Washington Redskins quarterback Joe Theismann and his presentation, The Game of Effective Leadership. Also slated are morning educational workshops; Case Study, Manufacturers Speaker and Past Presidents/Directors luncheons; and, of course, the opening of the convention trade show.

To stay on top of the happenings in Palm Springs, be sure to frequently check our NWFA virtual trade show throughout the balance of this week!