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On the Front Lines of COVID-19: SNAXPO, LVCVA, TAE Dallas & U.S. Travel Assoc.

In a world that is becoming increasingly unpredictable, the innovative streak in the heart of the tradeshow and event industry is a reassuring constant. Despite remaining under the constraints of virtual-only events, pioneering 3D marketers are finding new ways to ensure brands remain connect and commerce remains intact, whatever the industry. These are just some of the latest stories from a resilient landscape of disruptors, movers and shakers. 

SNAXPO, the premiere event in the consumer snack industry, has been pushed back to August 22-24, 2021. Originally slated for March 28-30, the show will be taking place in Charlotte, N.C., next summer, with a full in-person schedule expected.

“We are pleased to announce the return of SNAXPO,” says Elizabeth Avery, president and CEO of SNAC International. “Industry executives consistently tell us this is one of the most important events on their calendar, and it was sorely missed this year. So, we have developed a plan to bring the snack industry together, safely, in-person, to help its companies and its leaders develop the products, marketing strategies and supply chain solutions that help them win with consumers.”

And that pattern is slowly starting to be seen across the nation. On October 1, Nevada Gov. Steve Sisolak announced that attendee limits will be increased to 250 individuals per room or 50 percent capacity, whichever is less. And if a venue can manage separate areas for 250, the limit increases to 10 percent of the venue’s total capacity. This means venues that normally accommodate 10,000 people can apply for permission to host 1,000 (separated into groups of 250 each).

“This news is a great first step for our local meeting and convention industries,” says Steve Hill, CEO/president of the Las Vegas Convention and Visitors Authority. “We encourage everyone who visits, works or lives in Las Vegas to continue taking all the necessary safety and health precautions to allow us to quickly and fully reopen the destination.”

Staying in Vegas, last week the U.S. Travel Association announced that its annual international convention, IPW, will be a live, in-person event held September 18-22, 2021. “Next year’s IPW will reunite the global travel community and be the keystone for safely rebuilding international travel to the United States,” says U.S. Travel Association president and CEO Roger Dow. “While IPW will look a bit different next year, expect it to be the turning point for the all-important inbound travel sector.”

Unfortunately, this week, Alliance Nationwide Exposition and the Texas Live Events Coalition working in conjunction with the Kay Bailey Hutchison Convention Center in Dallas, Texas, have decided to postpone the upcoming Together Again Expo for Jan. 15, 2021.

The decision was made as a result of the catastrophic impact that continues to reverberate throughout the live events industry amidst the ongoing vacancy of legislative acknowledgment, financial support and a definitive reopening plan.  It has been reported by the Live Events Coalition that up to 70 percent of companies serving the events industry are currently closed.

“Together Again Expo’s goal has been to help build a community that positively impacts the recovery of the live events industry,” says Mark Yuska, owner of Alliance Nationwide Exposition and founder of the Together Again Expo. “We would be remiss if we did not revisit and evaluate the upcoming event experience for both attendees and exhibitors in the current climate, which continues to evolve.”

In-person tradeshows have successfully reopened in several countries across the world, with socially-distanced conventions having taken place in Germany, China and Malaysia over the past few months. The German government has even gone a step further, having classified tradeshows and conventions as “essential travel,” and that might be the best news of the year to date.

There is light at the end of the tunnel.

Upcoming stories in this series will feature companies and individuals who have risen to the occasion to build temporary medical facilities, masks and whatever is needed during the current crisis. If your company is going above and beyond to assist in this fight, please email us at newsdesk@exhibitcitynews.com and Amadeus at amadeus_finlay@hotmail.com for inclusion in future stories in this series.

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