FARMINGTON — The Four Corners Oil and Gas Conference will be held May 7 and 8 in Farmington's McGee Park, and among the topics it will cover is the formation of the Mancos Shale.

The conference invites people involved in the mining, energy, and oil and gas industry to attend related classes, shows and exhibits, said Jan Tomko, the conference coordinator. The conference is not open to the general public, she said.

Speakers in 2012 included Tom Finch, who discussed the U.S. Department of Transportation's pipeline gathering rule; Joel Parise, who outlined insurance changes; and Mark Parker, who talked about improving hydraulic fracturing with monitoring technology.

"People have a lot to pick and chose from and see whatever they're interested in," Tomko said.

This year's speakers will be listed on the conference's website by January or early February, she said.

McGee Park's multi-purpose building will provide three classrooms for speeches, and questions are accepted after each class. No charge will be collected this year to attend classes or trade shows, but pre-registration is required no later than a week before the conference.

There will be 353 exhibit spaces in the McGee Park Convention Center and Memorial Coliseum and 51 exhibit spaces outside on the midway. Exhibit space reservations will rise from $650 a booth to $750 on April 4.

Each day last year, about 1,200 people attended the conference, and about 1,300 lunches were served, Tomko said.

"We fill up," she said.

Tim Miller, owner and operator of Miller and Sons Tucking and Power Innovations, said the conference provides an opportunity to meet, and sometimes network, with industry professionals.

"All you have to do is go over there and start asking them a few questions about their product," he said.

Sometimes, he incorporates new equipment or technology in his operation as a result of the connections he makes, he said.

Each year, Miller expects to land a big equipment sale, he said. Power Innovations sells, among other products, pumpjack units and oil-filled engines to operate those units. But so far, he said, he hasn't made the "big sell."

But that's OK, he said. The conference allows him to learn about new technology, like low-emission engines and automated-control valves.

"It's all about new technology, more than anything," he said. "That's what the show's about."

To reserve an exhibit, go to fourcornersoilandgas.com.

For more information, call Tomko at 505-258-1748 or the Farmington Chamber of Commerce at 505-325-0279, or email fourcornersoilandgas@hotmail.com.

Dan Schwartz covers government for The Daily Times. He can be reached at 505-564-4606 and dschwartz@daily-times.com. Follow him @dtdschwartz on Twitter.