Hamilton, NJ – Once again during the last week of January, the Pool & Spa Industry descended on Atlantic City for the Annual Pool & Spa Show.
This year marked the 35th Anniversary of the Show. Attendees took part in the multi-day education conference and hit the Show Floor to visit with over 400 exhibitors from all aspects of Industry.
Education Conference Grows to Five Days
With the education sessions kicking off over the weekend and running straight through to Thursday, more students are taking advantage of the different education options offered at the Show. This year’s schedule included a half-dozen certification programs as well as 50 plus technical seminars and more than 25 business seminars truly making this Show a single destination where a company could get their entire employee training done for the upcoming season.
“Each year, we try and create that right balance in our education offerings. Our goal is to bring innovative ideas and courses to both the technical and business programs while also bringing a fresh prospective to the tried and true courses attendees depend on us offering each year. It’s really paying off as we see our attendance continue to expand each year,” said Show Education Director, Paulette Pitrak. “When I see companies bringing employees from all aspects of their business to the Conference, I know we are doing something right.”
Hot Topics this year included Salt Chlorine Generator Essentials, Customer Loyalty Strategies, Automatic Controls and the always popular Water Chemistry sessions.
“Because this show is powered by the Northeast Spa & Pool Association, we get the opportunity to talk to a lot of pool and spa professionals as we put together our education program,” said Pitrak. “Our success is really due to being able to tap into what the industry needs now to help their businesses.”
The Wall Brings Hydraulics to Life
A one of a kind live, interactive demonstration focused on swimming pool hydraulics brought crowds of eager professionals to the Show Floor looking to gain a better understanding of how the flow of water can be improved or hurt by a variety of design and system conditions.
The Wall consisted of three fully plumbed above ground pools, six pumps and dozens of feet of pipes. Visitors were given the chance to explore the entire hydraulics learning experience, view any or all of the six demonstrations and learn how to best achieve Maximum Performance, Superior Water Quality, Greater Energy Efficiency and Improved Consumer Safety.
“As an educator in the industry for 30 years, I know that there continues to be a disconnect when it comes to hydraulics,” said Pitrak. “When we started to think about how to tackle this topic, we realized pretty early we need to go way outside of the box and try something that has never been done before. So we took the pipes out of the ground and created true-to-life simulations that gave the industry a clear understanding of these hydraulics issues and how they affect system performance.”
The Wall was created with support of key industry players including AquaStar, Hayward, Pentair and Zodiac.
“We are always brainstorming new ideas to keep the Show fresh and this year, The Wall provided us with an opportunity to create a unique, interactive learning experience,” said Trish McCormick, Show Manager. “What I love so much about The Wall is that it became not only a place for learning but a real place for people to network and share ideas. The Wall got a conversation going and we are looking forward to building on that in years to come.”
Show Floor Sees Traffic of Interested Buyers
Starting off on Tuesday, there was a steady stream of attendees crisscrossing the exhibit floor connecting with longtime industry contacts, meeting new companies and checking out the latest products, services and innovations the industry has to offer.
“We could not hope for more from a trade show,” said Eric Gabrielson of Raypack. “The show has a great, steady flow of buyers that continue right through the afternoon each day."
Even with over 415 exhibiting companies, The Show Floor maintained its commitment to keeping the focus on the pool and spa industry.
“It’s important to me that our Show Floor continues to be about what’s happening in the pool and spa industry and not a watered down version of that goal,” said McCormick. “Along with celebrating our Show’s 35th Anniversary, we had the chance to thank 28 exhibitors who have been with us at each of those 35 Shows. Having those types of long standing relationships is something we are extremely proud of as a Show.”
What continues to bring back exhibitors for years and even decades is the quality of the buyers hitting the floor year after year. Feedback from both attendees and exhibitors has been fantastic and all continue to appreciate the unique business opportunity that The Pool & Spa Show offers.
First-time exhibitor, Janel Gonzalez Resh of The Smart! Co. said, “This was our first time at The Pool and Spa Show and everyone loved our products. Within a week of the Show, we received so many orders from new distributors that we covered all of our Show expense three times over. The Show was successful for us and we know we’ll definitely be back next year.”