EXPO date change generates immediate excitement

Exhibitors and visitors alike have immediately begun expressing excitement over the change of dates for the 2003 International Lawn, Garden and Power Equipment Expo (EXPO). The tradeshow is set for Saturday through Monday, October 18-20, at the Kentucky Exposition Center in Louisville. The 10th largest tradeshow in North America, this annual event is sponsored by the Outdoor Power Equipment Institute (OPEI).

According to Warren Sellers, show director, exhibitors are quickly signing on. “The initial reaction from exhibitors has been very positive,” he said. “We’re looking for some companies that have not exhibited in recent years to return and others, with more new products to unveil in the fall, to increase their exhibit sizes.”

One of the exhibiting companies that has already signed on for 2003 is Briggs & Stratton Corporation. “We feel that it was a great decision to move the show to October,” said Woody L. Collins, merchandise and show manager for Briggs & Stratton. “The new dates are going to generate more enthusiasm and attendance and make the outdoor demonstration area much better. It’s a plus all the way around.” For the 2002 show, Briggs and Stratton relinquished the opportunity to exhibit in the demo area. “Now I see us wanting space again,” Collins said.

Snapper increased its booth size for 2003 even before the new dates were announced. William Lowe, Snapper’s director of international sales, said the increase was reflective of their commitment as a member of OPEI. And, he is supportive of the October dates. “This is most definitely a better time to unveil new products,” he said. “The new model year for this industry typically starts around September.”

Megan Bennett, marketing coordinator for Kawasaki Motors Corp. U.S.A., said she anticipates buyers attending the Louisville show from a broader geographic range because most attendees aren’t as pressed for time in the fall as they are in the summer.

And, in fact, visitors are showing great enthusiasm about the change. Many have indicated they will be able to spend more time at the show and bring more of their employees.

“This year’s show was so good. We would like to make it an annual event and October would make that a better possibility,” said Joe Parrett, director of grounds for Friendship Village in Trotwood, Ohio.

Harry Marker, H & S Retail Sales, Rentals & Service in Millsboro, DE, said, “We cannot get away to the show in July; it’s our busiest time. October would be great.”

With the new dates and renewed enthusiasm as plans get underway for the 20th anniversary tradeshow, EXPO 2003 promises to be a celebration. Plans are in the works to blend business and fun as the industry comes together as a community.

To reserve space or request a visitor brochure, contact Sellers Expositions, 812-949-9200 or 1-800-558-8767. The Web site – www.expo.mow.org – will soon have details and registration information for EXPO 2003.

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