U.S. Trade Show Calendar: Spring 2010

NEW YORK — As with most things in a down economy, the fall ’10 trade show season is a buyer’s market.

That means trade show organizers, vying for attendees, are hoping to lure in buyers and kick off the fall ’10 shopping season by repositioning trade events to be more buyer-friendly and productive. Perhaps more so than ever before, event planners are catering to buyer needs by moving locations, shifting dates and expanding show hours to help buyers and exhibitors make the most of their time away from the office.

Here, Footwear News previews the upcoming show season, including the newest additions and highlights at each event.

The Children’s Club

Dates: Jan. 10-12
Show hours: 9 a.m.-6 p.m., Jan. 10-11; 9 a.m.-5 p.m., Jan. 12
Location: Jacob Javits Center, New York
Notable new exhibitors: Island Footwear, Dolce Vita, Tretorn/Puma
Highlights: The ENK Vogue Bambini Fashion Show will return this month, featuring categories for children from layette to tween. The show also has a March edition.

Transit/The Los Angeles Shoe Show
Dates: Jan. 16-18
Show hours: 9 a.m.-5 p.m.
Location: California Market Center, Los Angeles
Notable new exhibitors: Donald J Pliner, Kors by Michael Kors, Marc Joseph New York, Velvet Angels
Highlights: Transit has beefed up the number of contemporary footwear brands this time around. The show also is updating its floor layout by segmenting and color-coding different categories, including a dedicated men’s space as well as juniors’, comfort and women’s modern.

Designers’ Collective
Dates: Jan. 17-19
Show hours: 9 a.m.-6 p.m., Jan. 17-18; 9 a.m.-5 p.m., Jan. 19
Location: The Tunnel/LaVenue, New York
Notable new exhibitors: Ted Baker, Harvard Yard, Palladium
Highlights: As part of ENK’s newly rebranded ENKNewYork show, which includes Designers’ Collective, Blue, Tomorrow and Clean, the show-within-a-show will feature traditional men’s clothing and accessories.

Outdoor Retailer

Dates: Jan. 21-24
Show hours: 9 a.m.-6 p.m., Jan. 21-23; 9 a.m.-3 p.m., Jan. 24
Location: Salt Palace Convention Center, Salt Lake City
Notable returning exhibitors: MBT, Skechers, Tecnica
Highlights: The winter market will feature a number of new social media components to keep attendees plugged in, but show organizers are keeping them under wraps until the first day of the event, said Group Show Director Kenji Haroutunian. The testing demo the day before the show is taking new form, with a broader base of products under the new banner All Mountain Demo. “We’re reaching out to more logical peripheral markets, as well as the obvious winter sports: snowboarding, alpine skiing and free ski,” said Haroutunian. “These are all categories we haven’t really paid much attention to in the past, that we’re paying homage to at this version of winter markets in 2010.”

Compass Show
Dates: Feb. 1-2
Show hours: 10 a.m.-7p.m.
Location: The Puck Building, New York
Notable new exhibitors: 80%20, Coclico, Seychelles, Opening
Ceremony, F-Troupe, B Store
Highlights: Compass will celebrate its first show in New York this season — having moved from Las Vegas — by throwing a party in conjunction with Diesel at downtown nightclub Santos Party House. Buyers such as Nordstrom, Saks Fifth Avenue, Barneys, Piperlime.com and Amazon.com are expected to attend the event.

FFANY
Dates: Feb. 2-4
Show hours: 9 a.m.-6 p.m., Feb. 2-3; 9 a.m.-4 p.m., Feb. 4
Location: Hilton New York, Flatotel and showrooms, New York
Notable new exhibitors: Auri Footwear, Italian Accent Shoes, Miucha
Highlights: FFANY is undergoing a growth spurt this season. As demand for space has grown, the show will now span across two locations, with rooms at the Hilton and public space at the Flatotel. Organizers have also arranged a complimentary cocktail party for retailers and exhibitors during the show. With about 25 new brands, expectations are high. “In dollars, we will have well over double the size of the show and exhibitors, which is the new demand we didn’t have a year ago,” said President Joe Moore.

WSA
Dates: Feb. 2-4
Show hours: 9 a.m.-6 p.m., Feb. 2-3; 9 a.m.-4 p.m., Feb. 4
Location: Mandalay Bay Convention Center, Las Vegas
Notable new exhibitors: Reebok, BBC International, Sperry Top-Sider
Highlights: The February event is showcasing a more condensed format, this time all under one roof. And the Collections at WSA — previously held in suites at The Venetian Hotel — have now been integrated as part of the main show. “Naturally, it’s more effective and more convenient,” said ENK founder and chairwoman Elyse Kroll. “It will certainly be more financially responsible for everyone and it will save people travel time. I can’t imagine that it’s anything but good.” While this season’s show runs the same days as FFANY, WSA has switched the show dates in August to avoid the same overlap.

ASR
Dates: Feb. 3-4
Show hours: 9 a.m.-6 p.m.
Location: San Diego Convention Center, San Diego
Notable new exhibitor: Creative Recreation
Highlights: This season’s ASR will unveil a partnership with Crossroads, a show started by professional skateboarder Jamie Thomas. The outdoor event will take place in the Petco Park parking lot, directly across from the convention center. Class@ASR — a collection of designers that incorporates surf, skate and lifestyle fashion — is returning, after a positive response in September. “From a strategy point of view, what ASR is trying to accomplish is acknowledging that different categories of action sports have slightly different exhibiting needs,” said Andy Tompkins, VP of Nielsen Sports Group, which organizes the event. “We want to create unique environments that really cele-brate the categories that make up action sports.”

Magic Marketplace
Dates: Feb. 16-18
Show hours: 9 a.m.-7 p.m., Feb. 16; 9 a.m.-6 p.m., Feb. 17-18
Location: Las Vegas Convention Center and Mandalay Bay Convention Center, Las Vegas
Highlights: The Marketplace includes Premium at Magic, Street, Sourcing at Magic, WWD Magic, FN Platform, Menswear at Magic, S.L.A.T.E., Ecollection at Magic and Kids. The WWD portion covers all of womenswear, including contemporary, casual, accessories, footwear and sportswear, while S.L.A.T.E. showcases the surf, skate and street communities. The Ecollection focuses on eco-friendly fashion.

FN Platform
Dates: Feb. 16-18
Show hours: 9 a.m.-7 p.m., Feb. 16; 9 a.m.-6 p.m., Feb. 17-18
Location: Las Vegas Convention Center, Las Vegas
Notable exhibitors: Steve Madden, Stuart Weitzman, Stride Rite
Highlights: Magic’s dedicated footwear show will be divided into five categories, including women’s and men’s fashion, comfort, children’s and athletic/outdoor. “The key has been to unite the footwear industry and the ready-to-wear industry into one larger event, which lets them understand what’s going on in fashion in context to each other,” said Chris DeMoulin, president of Magic and EVP of Advanstar Fashion Group. “That’s why we have 500-plus footwear brands at FN Platform and that’s why we’ve had over 5,000 of our ready-to-wear buyers and our loyal Magic buyers say ‘This is so fantastic, I can’t wait to shop the footwear event.”’

POOL
Dates: Feb. 16-18
Show hours: 9 a.m.-6 p.m., Feb. 16-17; 9 a.m.-5 p.m., Feb. 18
Location: Las Vegas Convention Center, Las Vegas
Highlights: Brands driven by art and design will be on display, and designer Jeffrey Campbell will host a manicure station equipped with three custom-made colors for attendees to choose from.

Project Las Vegas
Dates: Feb. 16-18
Show hours: 9 a.m.-6 p.m., Feb. 16-17; 9 a.m.-5 p.m., Feb. 18
Location: The Mandalay Bay, Las Vegas
Notable new exhibitors: Elizabeth & James, Wet Cement
Highlights: For the past few seasons the show, which features a spectrum of contemporary lines, has been increasing the number of footwear exhibitors.

The Atlanta Shoe Market
Dates: Feb. 19-21
Show hours: 9 a.m.-7 p.m., Feb. 19; 9 a.m.-6 p.m., Feb. 20; 9 a.m.-5 p.m., Feb. 21
Location: Cobb Galleria Centre & Renaissance Waverly Hotel, Atlanta
Notable new exhibitors: Michael Kors, Charles Jourdan
Highlights: To accommodate the increasing number of exhibitors, the show created a new area called The Kids Shoe Box, which will be held in the connecting Grand Ballroom at the Renaissance Hotel. To allow more time to shop the show, hours have been expanded on the first day. “Obviously the show has become important to retailers, so by adding the new space, it is allowing more manufacturers to exhibit in the show,” said Executive Director Laura Conwell-O’Brien.

Coterie/Sole Commerce
Dates: Feb. 21-23
Show hours: 9 a.m.-7 p.m., Feb. 21-22; 9 a.m.-4 p.m., Feb. 23
Location: Javits Center, New York
Notable new exhibitors: Anna Sui, Pura Lopez, Patrick Cox, Alexandre Birman, Suecomma Bonnie
Highlights: Sole Commerce will be under the Coterie banner for the second time this season. The show also will add to its international designer offering, with Anna Sui, Pura Lopez, Patrick Cox, Alexandre Birman and Suecomma Bonnie, among others, making their debut at this season’s event.

The Children’s Great Event Shoe Show
Dates: Feb. 21-23
Show hours: 9 a.m.-6 p.m., Feb. 21; 9:30 a.m.-7 p.m., Feb. 22; 9 a.m.-
4 p.m., Feb. 23
Location: The Renaissance Hotel, Elizabeth, N.J.
Notable new exhibitors: Frye, Puna Blanco, Volatile
Highlights: The show is moving to a three-day format this season for the first time in its 20-year history. “We have been [told] by enough retailers, as well as vendors, that there is never enough time to see and work with people at a two-day show,” said President Allen Blum. The show will exhibit about 300 lines of children’s shoes and footwear accessories.

MAX Chicago Children’s Shoe Show
Dates: Feb. 24-26
Show hours: 4 p.m.-8 p.m., Feb. 24; 9 a.m.-8 p.m., Feb. 25; 9 a.m.-3 p.m., Feb. 26
Location: Embassy Suites, Deerfield, Ill.
Notable new exhibitor: Merrell
Highlights: MAX is hoping to increase its appeal to retailers this season by expanding its reach beyond footwear stores. “With the economy the way it is, we have elected to aggressively seek out all shoe store and clothing boutiques that deal in children’s items,” said President Patti Maibauer. While 100 vendors are expected to participate in the show, Maibauer said that figure could go up as the show is in talks with a number of athletic brands.

Shoe Market of the Americas

Dates: March 7-9
Show hours: 9 a.m.-6 p.m., March 7-8; 9 a.m.-3 p.m., March 9
Location: Greater Ft. Lauderdale/Broward County Convention Center,
Ft. Lauderdale, Fla.
Notable new exhibitors: Ed Hardy, Bourne Collection, Pam Wilkes
Highlights: The show is on the move with a new location at the Ft. Lauderdale Convention Center after residing in Miami Beach during previous years. The SMOTA collection will also be shown across the street at the Hilton Marina. In addition, the show will welcome a slate of new exhibitors. “The Ed Hardy brand and the Lucky brand — those really hot juniors’ lines are coming, which is great for us and for this market down here, since it’s a younger and a hipper area,” said Executive Director Beverlee Maier.

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