- Associated Press - Tuesday, May 20, 2014

BISMARCK, N.D. (AP) - North Dakota State Geologist Ed Murphy says the annual expo highlighting the state’s oil patch began 22 years ago as an excuse for geologists and engineers to get together.

He says the event has grown each year. Organizers are expecting more than 4,000 people at this year’s Williston Basin Petroleum Conference and Expo in Bismarck over the next three days.

Murphy says the conference has expanded to include all facets of the oil industry, but the goal is the same - to find the best method to drill for crude in the oil patch.

Cliff Wahlstrom, from Edmonton, is at the expo for the first time and expects it to be big. He says the first sign was how hard it was for him to find a hotel room.

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