It’s only 75 days till we hit the Colorado Convention Center for the biggest trade show our industry has ever seen. Here are some facts and tips to get you ready.
  1. Exhibitor space is sold out. There are currently about 1,000 brands, big and small, outdoor and snow sports, on the exhibitor list (this includes the wait list). 
  2. Retailers are coming. As of today, there are 2,000 retail shops represented on the attendee list.
  3. It’s gonna be massive. You’ll have a lot of ground to cover (3 floors, plus aisles, hallways, foyers) and tons of new gear to see. “This will not be like any other show,” says Marisa Nicholson, vice president and show director. “We are going to be bursting at the seams with gear.” 
  4. It will be truly blended. “It will not be skis on the left and outdoors on the right,” says Jennifer Holcomb. “We’re working together to create an organized yet fully unified environment.” 
  5. Planning will be key. The floor plan will be ready and booth numbers will be assigned by mid November. Attendees who want to be efficient should study the floor plan and book as strategically and geographically as possible to avoid travel time between appointments. Be on the lookout for your OR Daily Pre-Show edition, which will hit mailboxes just before Christmas with previews of new gear you’ll want to check out, plus a detailed annotated map of the show. 
  6. OR is taking steps to help show-goers navigate. “We’ll have an army ofAsk Me for Help’ people walking the floor, plentiful map kiosks, and orientation tours,” says Holcomb. “We’re revamping and streamlining our mobile app to help people easily navigate the show in real time, and we’ll have a well-staffed ‘Text for Help’ operation in full swing.” (Fun fact: The OR team is headed to Denver next week specifically for a “signage meeting” to inspect existing signs all over the convention center and determine needs. Just one of the many glamorous aspects of putting on a tradeshow.) 
  7. The public is coming (for some portions of the event). For the first time ever, consumers will be welcome at the fashion show and concert (DJ Matt Cassidy, JAUZ, and Mac Miller) on night 2. Red Rocks Amphitheatre on Jan. 26. 
  8. Curated spaces will help retailers target key areas. Venture Out celebrates the modern outdoor experience. Luxe is an immersive experience in premium and luxury snow and outdoor apparel. Scandinavian Village is a sector where you can discover the energy, diversity and culture of Scandinavian brands. And Rental World is a one-stop overview of alpine, snowboarding and cross country rental gear. 
  9. The Inspiration Awards are back. There are a ton of amazing people and companies in our industry who inspire us all to do more in the outdoors. Who will this year’s winners be? This event is slated for night 1, Jan. 25. Confirmation and details are TBD. 
  10. We all need a little stoke. Mark your calendars (night 3, Jan. 27, at the Bellco) for the all new “Night of Stoke,” an evening of films and speakers living the dream of the ultimate wintersports lifestyles. 

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