Central Florida’s Annual Koi Show

Taking a break in March from our Michigan winter to head South for warm weather is a dream come true.  We scrounge around for our summer clothes, sun screen and sandals, and pray for good weather.  This year we were blessed with very nice weather.  Vacationing at the same time as the annual Central Florida Koi Show (CFKS) is becoming an annual event for us.  This show is one of the biggest in the country.  Plenty of vendors, lots of beautiful Koi in competition and plenty of Koi for sale.

This year the Koi Show and the sunshine drew a nice group of us to the Orlando area.  Ron & Sue Kardynski, Richard & Beth Rubenstein, and Ray & I flew down in the middle of the week.  Richard & Beth headed to Disney while the 4 of us checked out Orlando.  Walking down International Drive, we can always find something fun to do, like feeding alligator’s – just ask Sue.  A day spent at Universal Studios was a full day – the new and improved Spiderman 3D ride was great as well as the Wizarding World of Harry Potter.  Dennis Long and Ervin Daniels joined us on Friday.  John Rae as well as Mike and Martha Conrad traveled from other parts of Florida to take in the Show.  An old friend of MKPC was there, Mickey Stonepainter, who now lives in Florida.

We spent a couple of hours at the Show on Friday, talked with friends like Taro Kodama, Connie from Ultrabalance, and fellow ponders who we have seen over the years.  A lot of Saturday was spent at the Koi Show which was on International Drive.  Some of us attended seminars.  Richard won a pin at a seminar – one of the speakers had attended the Holland Koi Show in Europe and brought it back.  We checked out all the vendors, trying to decide what we should or should not try to take back on the plane – shirts, jewelry, metal art, painting, vases and clocks with watergarden designs and much more.  Obviously pumps, skimmers, filtration systems, Koi and watergarden plants were out of the question.  Then, as the judges were viewing the show tanks and finalizing the list of winners, MKPC members were going from show tank to show tank trying to narrow down the choice for our MKPC Friendship Stone and also see if we could pick the Grand Champion out of all the Koi.  Our final pick for the friendship stone was a Koromo owned by Margy McManus of South Carolina.  Ray presented our Friendship Stone to Margy at the Banquet which was held at the same hotel as the Koi Show.  Turns out that this Koi we liked so well was also liked by the judges – it won Grand Champion B.  Grand Champion was a Kohaku, over 28 inches.  After watching all the winners honored and the excitement of the owners, after raffles and a live auction, laughing and talking with friends, we were ready to rest.

The show ended on Sunday but six of us stayed a few more days to enjoy the 80-85 degree weather.  Took a tour of the Harry Leu Gardens and walked around Downtown Disney.  Nothing like a trip with friends.  Next year, hopefully Maria and Antoinette will be able to come with Dennis and Ervin.  Bigger group, more fun.

Teri Alexander