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ATLANTA , GA (September 23, 2016) -- Buyers from all 50 states and 27 foreign countries gathered for the September 18-21, 2016 Las Vegas Souvenir & Resort Gift Show. Featuring nearly 1300 booths, including 170+ new exhibitors, the 11th edition at the Las Vegas Convention Center brought the industry together for four days of networking, product introductions, innovations and trendspotting.
“Now in its 11th year, this show continues to surprise and delight buyers and exhibitors alike with new initiatives, resources and opportunities,” explains Lisa Glosson, Show Director, Urban Expositions. “In addition to a record number of new exhibitors, we also added a special Made In America section and showcased our largest selection of handmade offerings to date. These product spotlights and other show enhancements are all direct results of feedback we receive from our loyal buyer and exhibitor audiences sharing ways we can continue to meet and exceed their needs year after year.”
The 2016 edition brought together thousands of best-selling lines and new souvenir and resort resources in every category, including destination, resort and tourist merchandise, souvenirs, eco-friendly products, t-shirts, beach items, Made in America, coastal and nautical, lake, mountain and lodge, ski-themed product , logo product, shell items, giftware, jewelry/ fashion accessories, toys/games and more. In addition, the state of Hawaii’s Business Development and Support Division once again hosted a Hawaii Pavilion featuring 20 leading Hawaiian manufacturers and artisans showcasing the best the islands have to offer.
Shining a special spotlight on the show’s growing product offerings, show producer Urban Expositions presented Freaker USA (left) with the show’s Best New Product Award and recognized Whimsies (right) with the Best Made in America Product Award.
“The Las Vegas show gives us a great opportunity to get ahead of artwork, trends and get a head start on the new season for 2017,” said Cindy Long, Aramark/Bushkill Farms, Bushkill, PA. Aramark’s Vice President of Retail & Leisure Eric Flanigan agrees, “I represent 30+ locations for our parks, leisure and sports group and this show is a great resource for Made in America and other new resources.”
“This is our 8th trip to the Las Vegas show and it just gets better and better,” adds Bruce Micklus, Rockin Rudys, Missoula, MT. “We always find the products we need and will keep coming back.”
Among the new initiatives this year included a number of educational buying tours. Buyers gathered to learn trends and insights for select categories followed by curated tours of the show floor. Programs included a Tour of Trends: Personal Care & Lifestyle Products hosted by the Day Spa Association and led by Patty Biro, Patty Biro & Associates; Conservation Seminar & Buying Tour led by Tommy Brown, Retail Manager & Buyer, Saint Louis Zoo; and the Made in America Buying Tour led by Retail Expert Chris Lake.
Retailers also had opportunity to enjoy a variety of networking events and show promotions. Among them, an Opening Day Happy Hour hosted by exhibitor Freaker USA; Goody Bag Giveaways on Sunday and Monday mornings; daily raffles for fabulous gift baskets provided by exhibiting companies; popcorn and cookie socials in the new buyers lounge ; product preview display areas in the lobby and buyers lounge; the Living Legends Association event honoring Dave Crandall and Don Warner with the Golden Lily Award; ZAG Reception; sponsored hospitality suites and more.
“I come here with my entire buying team --it’s our number one show every year. Not only do we have the opportunity to network with hundreds of our counterparts throughout the country, but everything is here –all in one location,” says Lisa Shroyer, Space Needle, Seattle, WA.
The 2016 edition also received strong marks from exhibitors pleased with the traffic on the floor and business written in their booths.
“This has been a phenomenal show for us,” said first-time exhibitor Josh Glisan, Dust City Designs LLC/Woodstickers. “Perhaps the biggest thing that has impressed us is the number of connections we’re making – with buyers of all sizes throughout the country and worldwide, sales reps and other industry members. We dipped our toe in the water with this edition and we’ll be back in a big way next year.”
“It’s our favorite show of the year, “ adds Frank Stopak, Charles Products. “It’s such a great place to see our established accounts and to discover new ones. We’ve signed a number of new accounts already.”
“We’ve had a great show,” says Craig Helmholz, Purr-fection. “We do tremendous business here working with our current customers and we’ve secured so many strong leads with large companies that we know will turn into great business down the road, too. “
The next edition of the Las Vegas Souvenir & Resort Gift Show will be held September 13-16, 2017. For more information, call 800.318.2238 or visit www.lvsouvenirshow.com
ABOUT URBAN EXPOSITIONS
Based in Kennesaw, GA, and founded in 1995, Urban Expositions produces and manages a portfolio of 36 events. Urban serves industry sectors including Gift, Souvenir, Art, Aviation, Foodservice, Halloween |Party , Pet, Automotive and Gaming. Urban also produces Airport Revenue News, a publication focused on the airport concession industry. Urban has offices in Shelton, CT and Boca Raton, FL, and is represented by employees in California, Colorado and Illinois. www.urban-expo.com