News

  • 04/08/2015 5:00 PM | Anonymous

    If you have ever entered a fleece show or are contemplating entering one, this is the webinar you do not want to miss! On Monday, April 13, Senior AOA fleece judge and educator, Cheryl Gehly, will explain the benefits of participating in alpaca fleece shows. Learn how your fleeces are judged, how to prepare your fleece to show the best and how your breeding program will benefit from entering fleece shows. Cheryl is a great teacher!


    To learn more about this webinar and the entire series, just click here.

  • 04/07/2015 9:13 AM | Anonymous

    The Suri Network will present the Jim Barker Suri Network Ambassador Award this year to a Suri Network member who exemplifies Jim Barker’s commitment to and enthusiasm toward the Suri alpaca industry and shares the Suri Network’s mission of promoting and preserving the Suri alpaca in North America.   Do you know of an individual who has contributed to a project, service or event that has made an extraordinary impact on Suri Network community?  Please nominate those who you feel have best modeled Jim Barker’s contributions and enthusiasm for the Suri industry!  Click here for more details.

  • 02/12/2015 9:48 AM | Anonymous

    Have you ever wondered about the demographics of Suri Network members? Check out this interactive map to see where member farms/ranches are located throughout North America and the world!


    Just click the image to open the map in another browser window.

  • 12/12/2014 6:37 AM | Anonymous
    In the past, membership renewal for the Suri Network has occurred on the anniversary date of when a member first joined. This made it easy for a member to join at any time of the year and pay the full membership fee. It also made it easier for the office staff since they did not have to calculate prorated membership fees. The disadvantage of this method is that membership renewal dates are scattered throughout the year and is is difficult for the office to track renewals.

    With the implementation of our new membership management software and website last year, features within the software make it much easier to establish a common membership renewal date. The new date will be June 1 beginning in 2015. We chose this date to keep it further from many membership organizations that renew at the beginning of the year. New members will be able to join at anytime of the year and their membership fee will be prorated to the common date of June 1.

    What do you have to do?

    Nothing! If your membership renewal is due between now and June 1, 2015, you will receive your normal invoice for $100. Just pay the full amount. Sometime before June 1, 2015 your account will be credited for the amount of your membership period remaining after June 1, 2015. For example, if your current renewal is in March 2015, you will be given a $75 credit on the remaining value of your membership from June 2015 - February 2016. You will receive an invoice before June 1st for the new membership period (June 2015 - May 2016) for $25 ($100 minus the $75 credit).

    If your renewal date last year was between July 2014 and December 2014, your invoice on June 1st will be prorated to discount the amount still remaining on your membership. For example, if you renewed in September 2014, your invoice will be $76.

    We realize that this may sound complicated, but the process should work smoothly. If you have any questions, please contact the Suri Network office at (970) 586-5876.


  • 12/05/2014 6:53 AM | Anonymous
    The Suri Symposium and Fleece Show features competition for fleece, cottage fleece, fiber arts and spin-offs. Unique because it is all Suri!!

    The 2014 Spin-Off Competition, judged by Certified Master Hand Spinner Donna Rudd, gave entrants an opportunity to present samples of their fleece for spinning. We asked Donna for her perspective concerning Spin-Offs and here is what she told us.

    What can one learn by entering a Spin-Off?

    The evaluation given by a spin-off judge provides a broad range of evaluations based on first impression of the raw fiber sample to evaluating it for flaws such as excessive guard hairs, tenderness and second cuts and finally the finished hand spun yarn.

    Records are kept of the time and effort spent on removing debris, carding, drafting and spinning the fiber and points are appointed accordingly. It is important to know that any debris or vegetable matter will affect each and every step of this process and ultimately your finished yarn and product. Points awarded for degree of loss are also important to note because this directly affects a producers financial affairs in the big picture.

    When a Spin-Off judge evaluates the finished yarn they are not evaluating their spinning proficiency. Rather, they are looking at how the fiber behaved to being manipulated into the twisted state. If there was vegetable matter, snags and snarls from second cuts or tender fibers or uneven lengths of fibers and a large variation of microns there will be a huge discrepancy in the yarn grist and twist. The yarn is evaluated for its durability, versatility and overall desirability, finally for handle, visual appeal and handle.

    It is the points awarded and the faults noted that really tell the full story of the fiber. For example, if there were very low marks for absence of guard hair and degree of production loss, this would tell me that your yarn is likely to appear and feel hairy and that a lot of the finer fibers were lost or broken during fiber preparation. The resulting yarn is likely to be very unevenly spun giving low marks for ‘Yarn first impression and hand’. Whereas, if you had an entry which was uniform in length, micron with few faults such as vegetable matter and guard hairs, it is likely to have high marks in fiber preparation and certainly high points for a superior yarn.

    It is the points noted above that assist you in understanding the whole story of your raw fiber. Judges even go so far as to suggest end uses for your fiber and make personal comments which are intended to encourage you in your fiber production.
    Where else can you learn so much for so little?

    Is it hard to prepare a sample for a Spin-Off?

    No, it’s as easy as 123!
    1. Always read the show rules to know exactly how many ounces to submit, entry deadline, cost and address. Most AOA shows have a limit of 2-4 ounces. Weigh your entry after you have prepared it and removed vegetable matter & debris.
    2. Choose a good clean mid-side sample from your fleece, remove coarse locks, excess debris, second cuts and vegetable matter without disturbing the lock structure too much, and give it a good shake to remove dust and sand.
    3. Review your entry to ensure it is as clean, uniform and consistent in length and micron as possible. Fill out your entry forms, attach your payment and pop them in the mail!

    What do you look for in a Spin-Off entry?

    Cleanliness, luster, uniformity of locks in every way (length, micron, style) and lack of faults that could lead to lost points for an otherwise perfect entry! Many times I find an entry that makes my heart leap for joy as I open the package; its lustrous beautiful locks appear perfect. Then, I find faults, such as tender fibers, matting, second cuts or excessive debris deep within the beautiful locks which of course has a large amount of broken fibers with it…hence, huge fiber loss. That beautiful entry that just got high marks for first impressions got very low marks for fiber preparations and again low marks for the resulting yarns and it did not win the race!

    The entry that is clean and has uniform lengths and microns and bright luster will generally receive the highest points all across the score card and result in the most consistent yarn.

    Are there any special tips that you, a Master Spinner and judge, have for people interested in entering Spin-Offs?

    Spin-Off score cards are a valuable tool in your tool box! They give you a totally unique look at your fiber from an impartial hand spinner’s point of view. Learn from it, question it, and run with it.

    The score card can give you a realistic impression of the fiber and production loss on your fleece so that you can take that into consideration for planning commercial processing.

    Plus, the score card can be a marketing tool! If you have a winning score card, a champion, it can aid you in selling your fleece, your fiber, your yarn. It can assist you selling your genetics and your breeding program to others.
    1. Take the time to evaluate your entry as you prepare it for the show.
    2. Double check for coarse locks and second cuts that may have been overlooked when you prepared the fiber.
    3. Double check your entry weight just before you seal the bag.

    The Suri Network Board of Trustees appreciates the expertise of Donna Rudd as our 2014 Spin-Off and Fiber Arts judge. We hope that Donna's insights encourage all our members to enter the all-Suri Spin-Off competition in 2015!


  • 11/20/2014 8:51 AM | Anonymous

    Faced with unanticipated and quite dramatic price increases at our usual venue in Estes Park, the Suri Network Board of Trustees has worked hard to find an alternative location for the 2015 Symposium. We explored alternative venues in Estes Park. We asked membership about venue preferences as well as other input for the Symposium. And we listened!

    Based on your input, as well as other practical consideration, we believe we have found the best location possible for our 2015 Symposium. The Embassy Suites Loveland Hotel, Spa & Conference Center offers us an excellent choice.

    Loveland is about 50 minutes from the Denver airport and easily accessible via Super Shuttle or by rental car if you choose. Estes Park is just another 45 minutes west of the Embassy Suites – perfect for adding another day or two on to your Symposium travel. Colorado State University is just ten minutes north of the Embassy Suites. Loveland offers a full range of shopping, public art, and dining options.

    The Embassy Suites Hotel, Spa & Conference Center (check it out here!) offers excellent facilities for our Symposium. Everyone gets a two-room suite, a complimentary cooked-to-order breakfast, plus evening cocktails and snacks. Room rates offered are reasonable, from $134 at our group rate – even less than our rate at Rocky Mountain Park Inn in 2014. And the hotel will offer those rates to our group for two days before and two days after the Symposium.

    We believe the Embassy Suites in Loveland will provide us with an excellent venue for our 2015 Suri Symposium. We hope to see you there August 13, 14, and 15 for three full days of education, networking, and opportunity!

    You can go ahead and reserve your room now at the Embassy Suite! Get it on your calendar now! To make your reservation HERE.  Or, call 1-800-Embassy (362-2779) and refer to booking code SURI.

  • 11/20/2014 8:03 AM | Anonymous

    AOA Announces
    Student Design Competition

    The future of the alpaca industry is dependent upon increasing the use of alpaca fleece throughout the world. By encouraging the use of alpaca in clothing design and other products, it increases demand for alpaca fleece, which increases demand for alpacas to produce that fleece.


    The use of alpaca in fashion starts with the students. It is imperative that we work to build this interest, desire, and passion in the fashion students of today, who will be the fashion designers of tomorrow. AOA (formerly AOBA) has done this for many years and we are working to further expand the program.


    The AOA Fiber and Fiber Products Committee is currently planning the 12th annual student design competition. This program is vital to the future health of our industry, as such; we need all hands on deck for support of this program. In the coming months, we will be asking for financial support to help cover the students’ costs, but at this time we need to gather samples of yarn and fabric so that sample kits can be sent to instructors at the colleges and universities in early January 2015.

    We are in need of donations which can include any amounts of yarn or woven, felted, knitted, or crochet fabric as long as it is at least 50% alpaca fiber. Suggestions include:

    • leftover yarns from projects, mill end samples, spinoff entry samples
    • swatches of those knitting and weaving samples
    • leftover swatches from garment production
    • whatever comes out of the stash of yarn you have!
    • the ugly yarn (Ruth will overdye it)

    The students only need a small amount to create an entry board, but with 35 schools and over 200 students, we need a lot of samples with a lot of variety! For the 8th consecutive year, Ruth Fuqua will be coordinating the program. If you would be interested in supporting this important program through donation of materials, please send them to:


    Ruth Fuqua
    AOA Student Design Competition
    7236 Lebanon Road
    Mount Juliet, TN 37122

    Please send whatever you can to Ruth by December 15, 2014.


  • 11/10/2014 8:27 AM | Anonymous

    June 26-28, 2015 in Denver, Colorado


    Conference to Include:

    • AOA National Alpaca Fleece Show
    • Fleece & Fiber Educational Seminars
    • Livestock Business Seminars
    • General Alpaca Seminars
    • AOA Annual Meeting
    • Publicly Advertised Fleece Show & Vendors
    • Much, Much, More!
    This is a conference primarily centered around alpaca fleece and fleece related products. 


  • 11/03/2014 5:07 AM | Anonymous

    The Suri Network was represented at the FFA Convention in Louisville, KY last week.  The FAA (Future Farmers of America) hosts this annual gathering of 60,000 high school students and their advisors.  The Suri Network had a display of information and Suri alpaca products for the youth to see and several Suri alpacas for them to learn about and take "selfies" with.  Youth are the future of our Suri industry and this was a great place to educate them on the Suri alpaca as a livestock alternative.  For more information on how to get the FFA and 4-H in your area involved, go the the Suri Network's youth page.

  • 09/09/2014 6:37 AM | Anonymous
    The "Suri Strut" Fashion Show was held at the 2014 Summer Symposium. Seven North American designers had their fashions presented on the runway.  Click the link to see a photo album of the show.



  


  Suri Network
P.O. Box 1984
Estes Park, Colorado   80517
Phone: (970) 586-5876
Fax: (970) 591-0007

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