Outdoor Sports Show Ready to Open in KC | Sports Destination Management

Outdoor Sports Show Ready to Open in KC

Nov 04, 2022

Grassroots Outdoor Alliance (www.grassrootsoutdoors.com) will bring their Connect buying show into Kansas City this weekend with a full floor of industry leading brands, an increase in retailer attendance, and two new discovery opportunities to help bring it all together.

Scheduled for Nov. 7-10, 2022, Grassroots Connect will gather more than 1,000 attendees at the Kansas City Convention Center for 9,343 pre-scheduled appointments including 8,230 total meeting hours. Buyers at the show will represent 132 retail stores and 220 total doors: a retailer attendance number that is a 15% increase from the spring 2022 show, which exceeded pre-pandemic attendance levels.

Grassroots Connect will also gather more than 150 brands from around the country: a record tally that includes 116 brands on the show floor, and 38 participating in a new one-day Discovery Marketplace held the night before the show begins.

“Grassroots Connect gives both retailers and vendor brands a level of efficiency and predictability that is unique in the trade show landscape. People know who they’re going to see, and they know they’re going to conduct a lot of business there,” said Gabe Maier, president of Grassroots Outdoor Alliance. “At the same time, what makes specialty independent retailers great is the freshness of their product selection, which is why we’ve added some new discovery tactics for both attending brands as well as prospective exhibitors.”

The Grassroots Connect schedule of events will begin on Sunday, Nov. 6, at the Loews Hotel with retail membership meetings in the morning, followed by an afternoon of education sessions – open to all retailer attendees for the first time – from noon to 4 pm.

Beginning with a lunchtime “Fireside Chat” on the opportunities of inclusion with Earl B. Hunter Jr. and Chuck Millsaps, the afternoon sessions to follow will include “Small Business Legal Matters: Employment Law” with Jeremy Merkelson of Holland & Hart; “Small Business Legal Matters: Trademarks” with Craig Beaker of Holland & Hart; “Where’s Waldo: Finding top talent in a crowd” with Lori Kleiman of HR Topics; “Leveraging Employee Engagement To Ensure Brand Success” with George Lee of Conte’s Bike Shop; and “Best Practices for Aging Inventory, and Buyers Beware! Blind Spots in the New Normal” with Carrie Watson of Outside Looks LLC. Detailed descriptions of all education sessions can be found at https://connect.grassrootsoutdoors.com/fw22-education.

Immediately following Sunday’s education sessions, the Discovery Marketplace and retailer happy hour will be held from 4-7 pm in the Loews Hotel ballroom. The Discovery Marketplace will feature a curated selection of 38 invited brands, each with a simple booth and limited product selection, for a “meet and greet” format that enables introductory conversations between retailers and prospective new vendors.

A second discovery event will be held on the main floor of the show from 6-8 pm on Tuesday, traditionally the busiest day of Grassroots Connect. This Discovery Happy Hour is designed to facilitate new connections between attending retailers and show exhibitors, encouraging vendors to open their booths for open format conversations. The social environment for the Discovery Happy Hour will include food, beverages and music.

In addition to the Discovery Happy Hour, that Tuesday (Nov. 8) is also the national mid-term election date. Grassroots Connect organizers are encouraging all show attendees to make plans for absentee voting in their home state before making the trip to the show.

(Click to Expand)