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Reflections from the Fall Fence Forum 2022

Mattschaefer (1)
Matt Schaefer, Grassland Solutions

Stockade caught up with Matt Schaefer, General Manager, Grassland Solutions, Minnesota, to reflect on the success of the 2022 Fall Fence Forum. Here’s how it went:

How did you come to know about the Fall Fence Forum?

I did not attend the first year and realized through social media that I missed out on something that seemed valuable to my business.

How many times have you attended?

Since then, I have attended for the last three years.

What keeps you coming back?

The people that show up to the event are leaders in the industry, plus the forum is a place to share Ideas with other fence professionals, which are both on installation side and sales side. It’s also a showcase of talents and ideas that you can build together collectively, an experience that you can duplicate at a trade show or typical field day.

What did you enjoy the most?

The people and the event in general.

fall fence forum 2022

Ryan Gray, Cowboy Construction
Ryan Gray, Cowboy Construction

We then were able to catch some words from Ryan Gray from Cowboy Construction, Washington.

What three words would you say best describes your experience at the forum?

  1. Educational
  2. Empowering
  3. Fun

Your favourite part of the Fall Fence Forum?

I enjoyed good conversation with like-minded people who want to improve their business.

The one thing you learned the most.

I learned how to run a p240 on a Rayco, not as good as Stewart but still fun to run. I also learned that I need to buy one!

P240 On A Rayco

Kyle Stender, J&AK Agriculture and Connor Voulo, Timberline Ridge & Fence
Kyle Stender, J&AK Agriculture and Connor Voulo, Timberline Ridge & Fence

Now, here are some words from Kyle Stender, a fencing contractor and owner of J&K Agriculture Inc, Western New York.

What three words would you say best describes your experience at the forum?

  1. Engaging
  2. Educational
  3. Entertaining

Your favourite part of the Fall Fence Forum

That this event brings together contractors and vendors to connect and collaborate on ways to improve the Agricultural Fencing industry and to continue to work on best practices.

A new person you met

Connor Voulo, in person, who was the new recruit that Stockade sponsored to attend the Fall Fence Forum. Although I was a part of seeing the essays submitted for this opportunity, it was great to actually speak with him, work with him, and get to know him and his Dad better.

One thing you learnt

I continuously learn that people in the fencing industry are generous and willing to share their knowledge with fellow contractors. It was truly an event where encouragement, hands on practice and lengthy discussions were had. From how to build a fence to best practices, while also keeping your business successful. So many folks from all over, including people from the UK, Mexico and Northern and Southern United States, were willing to share their knowledge of how to build a better fence, what tools and techniques they use and reasons behind certain practices.


Last but not least, our Product Manager for Stockade Andy Schoenherr shares a few final thoughts with us.

What three words would you say best describes your experience at the forum?

  1. Collaborative
  2. Supportive
  3. Exciting

Your favourite part of the Fall Fence Forum.

The Food! Leslie and her team make the breakfasts and lunches from scratch. The dinners were instead catered by a local company. No one leaves the Forum hungry! Friday night everyone sits around the campfire and shares their favorite tool tips and more, but more importantly, talks about the fencing industry and how the other contractors have supported them in their business and career.

Giving Back for those who Gave All: NAFCA Service Project at Arlington National Cemetery

This year Stockade had the honor of joining the North American Fence Contractors Association (NAFCA) at their annual service project at Arlington National Cemetery.  Each year, a dedicated group of volunteers donate their time and talent to build or maintain fence on the grounds of America’s most hallowed resting place for combat veterans who lost their lives in service to their country.

This year’s project involved building 275 feet of 7 foot high chain link around a maintenance area at the cemetery.  Brian West, Stockade Territory Manager for the Southeast, was on hand to help out and used the word “humbling” to describe both the place and the experience.

“I had never been to Arlington, so to be there at all was pretty neat, but to be there working and contributing to maintaining the grounds made it a really special project.”

Brian and his wife Libby were part of a group of about 10 volunteers who attended.  It was a smaller group than year’s past, but everyone involved was extremely dedicated and understood the importance of the work.  The effort was led by Clint Iams of Log Cabin Fence in Amity PA, who is currently the Executive Director of NAFCA.  This was the first time the group has been able to get together in a number of years due to the Covid-19 Pandemic.

In past years there would be 35-40 people in attendance.  Given this year was our first project since 2019, it was a much smaller group.  We are looking forward to building back up to the larger events of the past.”  said Clint.

Arlingtonplaque2022 3

To mark the significance of the project, the group brings with them a plaque that symbolizes the spirit and the history of their efforts.  In 2012, Scott Ruete, US Coast Guard (Retired) and past chairman of the Arlington project, saw a cherry tree limb growing through a section of 70-year-old chain link on the grounds.  It had to be removed, but a portion of the tree was kept and memorialized in the plaque which also features 2 medallions given by the staff at Arlington National Cemetery.   Holes were drilled in the wood to hold shell casings from a 21-gun salute, and a horseshoe was added from a horse that pulled a caisson from one of the many military funerals that are still performed daily at the cemetery. 

Every fence contractor understands the importance of keeping the client happy.  But it’s a whole new level of pressure when the “client” is the United States Government and you’re at a place as significant as Arlington.   Al Martins, Owner of Fence Armor and current President of NAFCA, noted how the finished product was received. 

Arlington2022 6

“Both Chief Warrant Officer Rios and his Superintendent were very impressed with the quality of the work and commented on how quickly the job got done.  A lot of that was directly thanks to the Stockade ringing tool – it would have taken a lot longer using traditional pliers.” 

To assist with the project, Stockade donated all of the ring fasteners used to attach the tension wire to the top and bottom of the chain link, along with the use of our Pneumatic Ringfast tool. 

Clint noted how the Ringfast made “quick work” of securing the chain link to the tension wires. “I am not a chainlink contractor; however, if I was I would certainly want that tool on my truck.”

Both Al and Clint have been involved with this project for multiple years.  This was the seventh service project that Clint has volunteered for at Arlington.  With regards to the significance of what they were there to do, he remarked:

“It is always a humbling experience to be working and look up to see the rows and rows of white headstones.  These projects we complete are miniscule compared to those who gave their life in service of our country.“

Thank you to NAFCA and all of the volunteers who helped contribute to this terrific project!

Al Martins, Fence Armor, Ft Lauderdale, FL

Mart Prost, Prost Inc, Williamsburg, ON, Canada

Glenn Butterfield, Certainteed, Malvern, PA

Bill and Judy Iams, Log Cabin Fence, Amity, PA

Hurricane Fence of Richmond, VA

Brian and Libby West, Stockade

For more information about the North American Fence Contractors Association, please visit: www.4NAFCA.com
or find them on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/4NAFCA/

Connor Voulo wins Fall Fence Forum New Recruit Challenge

New Recruit on his way to Fall Fence Forum

Connor Voulo from Fly Creek, New York is heading off to Indiana to attend the 2022 Fall Fence Forum.

The 18-year-old from Timberland Fence and Land is this year’s winner of our first Fall Fence Forum New Recruit Challenge. You can read about the success of last year’s forum here. He takes away a complimentary entry and accommodation for the three-day event where he will learn tips and techniques from fencing professionals from around the country. There’ll be plenty of industry equipment demonstrations, educational workshops, and the chance to compete in the annual fence challenge.

Timberland Fence and Land specializes in residential, commercial, and agricultural fence. The business is run by Connor’s Dad and long-time fencing contractor Chris Voulo.

“The crew includes Dad, me and two part time guys. On big jobs, that’s how it works. A lot of the time it is me and my dad, and that’s cool because I get to work with my father. Fence work is a good bonding experience and I love the outdoors and construction in general. “I find it satisfying working with customers on different projects and completing them to the best of my abilities to make the customer happy.”

Connor Voulo

“I am learning the trade, trying to learn from other people and what they do, different tips, tricks, ideas, and ways of doing things. I have been talking with a lot of professional ag fencers from across the US. They all told me about the Fall Fence Forum, and all said it is a great thing to go to.”, continues Connor.

“I haven’t met a person yet who hasn’t been happy to share their tips and tricks and how they started out, what they have done, and things to avoid. I think it is going to be a great time going to the Fall Fence Forum to meet all these guys face-to-face, and learn as much as I can, and see different ways of doing things. That is what I am really excited for and hope to have happen.”

Connor has one-year under his belt with Timberland Fence and Land. His goals for the next few years are to help his father build the business to the best it can be and grow the company so it can invest in more equipment like their ST400i post stapler to drive productivity and efficiency.

“My aim is to provide top notch quality work, to build a reputation for being dependable and reliable and always bringing a smile to customers’ faces.”

Fall Fence Forum New recruit challenge