Why Long Beach? It's in the neighborhood

Friday, August 31, 2007

People have gotten so used to Medtrade Spring being in Las Vegas that many did a double take when they saw the site of the 2008 show--Long Beach, Calif.
It's not like the show moved to an out-of-the-way place; Long Beach is smack dab in the middle of the bustling Los Angeles scene. But questions abound as to why the show, slated for May 7-8, 2008, has been moved and whether Long Beach is its new permanent home.
Question no more. Medtrade show director Kevin Bird has the answers:
"The switch was actually made a couple of years ago when the Convention and Visitor's Bureau for Las Vegas informed us that convention center renovations planned for 2008 interfered with our date range," he said. "After taking a look at several cities, we chose Long Beach because of the West Coast concentration of Medtrade Spring attendees, as well as the city's ability to accommodate a show of our size ,with its meeting room space, hotel rooms and fine dining facilities."
In other words, Long Beach is in the backyard of many Medtrade Spring attendees. And Bird is confident that attendees will be impressed by the local venue.
"Long Beach has spent a lot of money to make their city into a great trade show destination," he said. "What sets it apart from a city like Las Vegas is that Medtrade Spring will occupy the convention center area. It keeps people in closer proximity to each other, which will obviously encourage interaction among all industry attendees."
Brian Pagel, vice president of Nielsen Business Media's apparel group, says the facility is inviting and comfortable.
"The hall is exhibitor- and attendee-friendly and the convenient location provides easy access to many of the local attractions," he said. "In large part due to the ease of producing an event in Long Beach, our shows have thrived and are approaching record attendance figures."
Because Long Beach doesn't have the distractions of Las Vegas, show-goers should find it more conducive to focusing on business-related matters, Bird said.
"Medtrade Spring isn't about a city or location; it is really about giving HME providers a place to get the tools they need to move their businesses forward during a turbulent time," he said. "The opportunity for education and meeting face-to-face with manufacturers is what Medtrade Spring is about. It is also important to remember the networking that occurs is essential for providers as they focus on the future of their businesses and the industry as a whole."
The show will be back in Las Vegas in 2009, and except for a 2010 visit to San Diego, will remain in Las Vegas for the foreseeable future, Bird said.