Twelve industry events and shows to attend this fall.

It’s pumpkin spice season, or more accurately, fall trade show time.

The biggest active-lifestyle industry shows taking place this quarter will span from desert to city to sea. Here’s a guide of what’s coming up on the calendar from now through November.

We’re on the cusp of September and the season kicks off with Nation’s Best Sports’ 2016 Fall Semi-Annual Market (August 30-September 2). Hosted at the Fort Worth Convention Center in Fort Worth, TX, the show delves into the best in fishing, camping, paddle sports, water sports, apparel, footwear, accessories and hunting & shooting.

If your bag is athletic equipment, apparel and accessories, the November 14-16 NBS Fall Athletic Market is around the corner. This is followed by the NBS Hunting & Rugged Apparel Market November 29-30.

Next on the docket is the 2016 Surf Expo in Orlando, FL. Board Demo Day starts the global watersports and beach lifestyle show on September 7, succeeded by two solid days of meetings and product unveilings. Categories represented will include surf, skate, sup, wake, wind, kayak/canoe, swim, footwear, resort, boutique and coastal gift categories.


That same weekend REI is hosting its inaugural women’s REI Outessa Summit at Powder Mountain, UT. We know, it’s not a trade show, but it’s worth mentioning on the calendar. SGB has no doubt female retail owners and operators will be in attendance, riding mountain bikes in the morning and SUPing in the afternoon as opposed to writing orders.

The following week brings SFIA’s Industry Leaders Summit to Denver, September 14-15. The event is at full capacity but there is a waiting list to try your luck. This is one of the best opportunities all year to listen to the leaders of the sports and fitness industry, whether from brand, financial or data backgrounds. Speakers on the roster include; Fouzan Mansuri, sports category leader, Amazon; Ryan Elvers, sports marketing lead, Amazon; Matthew Tingler, director, RW Baird; Tony Armand, CEO, United Sports Brands; Mary Shea, principal analyst, Forrester Group; and Cleveland Cavaliers and Quicken Loans Arena CEO, and Thomas E. Perez.

Interbike International Expo fills the Mandalay Bay Convention Center in Las Vegas, NV from September 21-23, and this show is uniquely exciting for SportsOneSource since it will be the stage where we officially launch our SSI Data bike platform. If you’re going to make the trek to the Vegas strip, it’s worth going two days early to catch the Interbike Outdoor Demo, the largest two-day bicycle event for the trade (cough, test drive the newest technology, cough). And for East Coast bike dealers, if a trip to Vegas is too far, check out the inaugural Interbike Fall Cyclofest at the U.S. National Whitewater Center in Charlotte, NC, October 20-23, which will also be a trial run of opening the show to general public with added music events on the final two days of the show.

Denver is the next stop on the itinerary as the Outdoor Industry Association (OIA) brings the 2016 Rendezvous to its home state (September 26-28). Community, collaboration and conversation are the buzzwords here, as OIA members and outdoor policy makers gather to talk about the opportunities and challenges for the outdoor industry. The upside, you’ll walk away with a plan on how to contribute to a healthy outdoor economy. Perks: A giving-back service project sponsored by Timberland and a Dierks Bentley Concert at Red Rocks. 

Take a breather before mid-October when the Club Industry Show holds its first event at the Hyatt Regency in Chicago (October 12-14). Organizers also adapted the show, as per attendee requests, to add a half day of conference sessions on Friday. SGB was in attendance at the Running and Fitness Event For Women in June at the same location, and we can verify it’s a great spot to host a show— i.e. easy commute from your hotel room to the show floor.

November means another edition of specialty’s gem, the Grassroots Outdoor Alliance (GOA) show, hosted in Knoxville, TN. From November 7-11, retailers and brands meet to talk brick-and-mortar, while filling order for next season. Then from the 9-11, the show is open to 100 non-member retailers and brands.


Photos courtesy Interbike, Surf Expo, Grassroots Outdoor Alliance