Rendezvous_Icon BL.jpg
Hosted by
The Bonsai Society of Portland
under the auspices of the
Pacific Northwest Bonsai Clubs Association

Welcome to the 2018 NW Bonsai Rendezvous, the truly unconventional bonsai convention!  We hope this experience is one of the highlights of your bonsai journey. Join us for 2 ½ days packed with exciting workshops, demonstrations, critiques, exhibit, and marketplace as well as socializing with other bonsai travelers. You'll watch top-flight Northwest artists work their magic on material that they have personally chosen, ensuring that you have access to the best material and are able to gain new and clear insights into the engaging art of bonsai.

Have fun browsing this easy to use website and consider participating in the many activities planned for you. Use the icon-driven menu on the home page to explore the many events and options that we have planned. In addition to the icons, you can always get back to the home menu by clicking the site title, , at the top-center of each page, or selecting the three-bar (hamburger) icon: .

The Rendezvous departs from the traditional PNBCA convention format in many ways. The primary change is the venue – rather than make use of a large, expensive hotel, we are holding the event at the Milwaukie Community Center in Southeast Portland. Registrants choose their own lodging, meals and event participation. In addition to the typical bonsai intense activities, we have planned great social events to round out the weekend.

The Rendezvous features superior quality workshop material. Each artist has hand-picked the material for their own workshops, and some will be grooming that material prior to the Rendezvous. Imagine: the artist is already familiar with the workshop material BEFORE the convention, rather than seeing the trees for the first time when they walk into the workshop room. What a great concept!

Our trees are high quality, unique specimens which thrive in the Pacific Northwest. Many are native species, and some are no longer available to purchase or to collect in the wild. We’ve worked hard to find the very best material available. It’s what you have come to expect from Portland and the Rendezvous will be no exception.  Detailed descriptions of the workshop trees may be found under Workshops on the Home Page.  Workshop positions will be filled on a first-come, first-served basis, so sign up early to ensure your spot.   

In keeping with our NW Bonsai theme, our featured artists are from the Pacific Northwest.  Main headliners are Ryan Neil and Michael Hagedorn, complemented by Matt Reel, Bobby Curttright, David DeGroot, and Joe Harris III. US National award winning BSOP members Scott Elser and Dennis Vojtilla will also present programs.  Artist bios may be found under Guest Artists on the Home Page.

The Rendezvous officially kicks off at 1:00 pm on Friday, September 14, and closes at 5:00 pm Sunday, September 16. The Schedule of Events lists the times and locations for various activities, including traditional workshops and demos throughout the 2 ½ days.  A printable copy of the schedule of events may be found under Schedule by clicking on More... on the Home Page.

The world class Bonsai Exhibit and the Marketplace will open Friday evening at 6:00pm.  Rendezvous registrants are invited to enjoy a reception and private viewing of both, complimentary to Full Pass registrants and available to others for a small fee. Hors d'oeuvres will be provided and a no-host bar will be available. This is an excellent opportunity to see vendors’ wares before they are open to the public, and to get reacquainted with your bonsai companions.  A list of vendors with contact information may be found under Marketplace on the Home Page.

There will be three Critiques, opportunities to view the Bonsai Exhibit in the company of one of our headliners.  Ryan Neil will present his commentary on the displays on Saturday morning.  Michael Hagedorn will share his insights on Sunday morning, and Matt Reel and Bobby Curttright will provide a joint Critique late Saturday afternoon.  Reservations for these exclusive Critiques may be found at the top of the Workshops page, selected from the Home Page.

Saturday morning Ryan Neil will work on one of his own personal world-class Rocky Mountain Junipers to demonstrate advanced refinement techniques.  This will be a one-of-a-kind, never seen before presentation that you do not want to miss. Saturday afternoon's demo will be by Matt Reel and Bobby Curttright, working together on a Mountain Hemlock.

As always, the raffle will be a regular feature of the Rendezvous, with drawings throughout the weekend. So don’t forget your tax-deductible donations. There will also be several oral auctions of bonsai material, including excess workshop trees and Saturday afternoon’s Reel/Curttright demonstration tree. 

Sunday morning will see Ryan, Michael, Matt and Bobby on stage together to discuss finer points of the exhibit trees. This dynamic approach draws upon the highly developed trees from our Bonsai Exhibit, and merges tree analysis and design with expert commentary.

Sunday afternoon is another new, unconventional feature - the Bonsai Rodeo. Patterned after the California Shohin Convention, the large room will be filled with workshops, lectures and demos all at the same time. The workshops will be small, generally no more than six participants per table who will take home a starter bonsai, kusamono or kokedama planting or hear valuable lectures. Observers can wander from table to table, watching and listening as the raw material begins its journey towards becoming treasured bonsai.  Descriptions of these mini-workshops may be found under Rodeo on the Home Page.

To make the 2018 NW Bonsai Rendezvous available to as many hobbyists as possible, we have kept the registration price to a minimum.  Convention registration covers use of the facility and operational costs, and provides the registrant passes to the Bonsai Exhibit, Marketplace, headliner demonstrations, silent observation of workshops, observation at Rodeo events, use of the Hospitality room and use of Will Call for storage of tools, bags, coats and purchases.  Event registration for Workshops, Rodeo events, Critiques, and apparel may be purchased individually on a per-item basis to create your own personal convention package.  

Please note that in another break with traditional convention customs, meals for the Rendezvous are an OPTION.  They are not included in the base registration fee.  Pick and choose which meals you’d like from the Rendezvous, or plan to drive to nearby restaurants. You can even bring a brown bag. But we think you will enjoy the food selections we have arranged.  We will be providing first rate meals, including sandwiches from Bob's Red Mill, a fajita bar from Chevy's Fresh Mex, and a barbeque by Hog Wild on Saturday night.  To select which meals you wish to purchase, choose Meals from the Home Page. Meal purchases must be made prior to September 1st so we know how much food to order.

Rendezvous registration may be accomplished on line or by using a printable form to be mailed, all found under Registration on the Home Page.  Because workshops are filled in the order registrations are received by the Registrar, we encourage you to use the on line system to avoid delay by the postal system.  Feel free to “fill up your shopping cart” as you move around the site, but BE SURE TO INCLUDE IN YOUR CART YOUR CONVENTION REGISTRATION FOR THE TIME OF YOUR SELECTED EVENTS. 

Registration for the full 2 ½ day event is recommended, however if you have time constraints, you may register for a single full day or for a half day only.  Please be sure your registration covers, at a minimum, THE TIME FRAME OF WORKSHOPS, RODEO SESSIONS, ARTIST DISCUSSIONS, ETC in which you wish to participate.  This will allow us to validate your workshop reservations and other purchases. 

Important information is found under More... on the Home Page, including convention Policies, the Schedule of Events, and a list of local restaurants.  Lodging is available at an assortment of nearby hotels - select a rate that suits your pocketbook. A list of nearby lodging options is found under More... on the Home Page.  You can also purchase a 2018 NW Bonsai Rendezvous memorial tee shirt or hat under More....

The Bonsai Society of Portland is working hard to make the 2018 NW Bonsai Rendezvous one of the best bonsai conventions you’ve ever attended.  Portland is fortunate to have access to several top professional bonsai artists, who will present unique and hard-to-find material indigenous to the Pacific Northwest.  Won’t you join us September 14-16, 2018 for an exceptional and rewarding experience – the 2018 NW Bonsai Rendezvous?

If you have any questions or comments, please use the provided contact form below:

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