As the Natural Resources Specialist for Fort Leavenworth, Kansas, the home of the first large hazelnut grove outside of the mother grove at Badgersett, I have to say that the hazelnut short course was very valuable and a good use of my time.
I certainly learned more about hazelnuts than I had already been aware of and this is largely because so much has developed since we first got involved. Additionally, I had the opportunity to visit with the other participants and learned from their experiences. I specifically brought back information to our military reservation that proved to be valuable that was a direct result of visiting with fellow students.
Coincidentally, they don't tell you about the great food that is prepared at the on-site cafeteria, but I have never eaten that well at any other conference which I have attended. And the overnight facilities are within a few steps of the conference center learning rooms.
Lastly, it is a major part of the experience to get the guided tour through the mother grove of hazelnuts and chestnuts and to visit the local Amish communities in the region. The total experience is worth it!
-Matt Nowak, Kansas Grower. Natural Resources Specialist for Fort Leavenworth, Kansas, US Army. 2007 Short Course Attendee