SureFire

Outdoor Retailer Returning To Salt Lake City

Yesterday Emerald Exhibitions announced that the Outdoor Retailer series of trade shows is returning to Salt Lake City after five years in Denver. The last show in Denver is the upcoming Summer Market but once 2023 rolls around, the show is going home and it won’t be soon enough. The show has been in serious decline since it’s move to Denver after pressure from the Conservation Alliance over issues surrounding public lands in Utah.

Here is their press release:

We’re Moving Back to Salt Lake City

Since 1982, Outdoor Retailer has brought the outdoor industry together for commerce, to share ideas, and to provide an experience that has grown into more than a trade show. Our community has become family, and for the past five years we’ve held our biannual gatherings in Denver. As our contract nears its natural end after 2022, we’ve been exploring our options and conferring with the industry to map our next steps.

After much deliberation and input from all sides, we’ve decided the best move for Outdoor Retailer is to return to our basecamp. We’re heading back to Salt Lake City and County to the place we grew up and where our industry matured into the dynamic and powerful community it is today. Moving forward, Outdoor Retailer will bring the community together in January and June at the Calvin L. Rampton Salt Palace Convention Center. We have a strong relationship with Salt Lake City and a committed partner in Mayor Erin Mendenhall, whose values align with ours following tremendous investments in clean energy and a strong commitment to public lands. This proved to be a real turning point in our recent negotiations.

A Commitment to Change

Salt Lake City and County is our hometown, and we’re going back with a commitment to effecting meaningful change. It would be wrong for us to leave the way we did and simply go back as if nothing happened. In reality, leaving after 2017 has not brought the change we had hoped for, so we will push back, not pull back. We firmly believe that staying engaged and collectively contributing to the ongoing discussion, no matter how difficult, is far more constructive.

We are the first to admit significant work is required to achieve change, so we are dedicating resources to making progress. To start, we are:

• Committing revenue over the next three years from Outdoor Retailer events in Utah to fund programs to support outdoor recreation and protect public lands;

• Forming the Business with Purpose initiative in partnership with Visit Salt Lake to bring city, county, state and federal officials, public lands and outdoor recreation leaders, and industry stakeholders together for biannual meetings focused on addressing challenges, influencing policy, assisting advocacy efforts, and directing resources into protecting natural and cultural spaces and improving access;

• Providing increased opportunities for the industry, local communities, and media to participate in panel discussions, educational activities, and volunteer projects.

New Experiences

We share your desire to build a stronger industry, and we are working to provide valuable experiences in Salt Lake City and County for you to effectively and efficiently contribute to the sustainable growth of your business.

As such, we are redefining Outdoor Retailer to meet the needs of the growing outdoor recreation economy, adding channels for the industry to interact directly with consumers and conduct commerce with buyers year-round. We’re moving beyond the walls of a convention center to present unique opportunities for commerce, storytelling, advocacy, knowledge and celebration. We are excited to unveil our plans at this summer’s show.

Competition with Cooperation

Outdoor Retailer began 40 years ago with a group of adventurers who loved nature and created gear to make it more fun. Today, we’re a passionate community actively championing causes and advocating for people and our planet. We come together to collaborate, laud achievements, and embrace diverse perspectives. In the booths and aisles, each of us has made it a goal to transcend an individual future – our work is grounded in a desire to improve the outdoor experience for others.

We’re incredibly grateful to Denver for nourishing these passions and embracing our amazing community. We’ll gather in Colorado once more this June to reconnect in person, enhance relationships, and celebrate our milestone anniversary.

As we plan for the coming years back in Salt Lake City and County, we move forward with the same optimism and values that have always guided our industry, and we’re ready to work with you to explore endless opportunities to help our industry grow. We are excited about what the future holds for Outdoor Retailer.

Marisa Nicholson
Outdoor Retailer
Senior Vice President & Show Director

Jeff Davis
Emerald
Group Vice President

2 Responses to “Outdoor Retailer Returning To Salt Lake City”

  1. cat_blaster says:

    lame. That venue sucks and so does SLC.

  2. Gear Guy says:

    So what they’re saying is that they had a significant drop off in attendance, vendors, revenue, etc., so they are going back to capture those things while “pushing back” against “the man.” Capitalism wins again!

    I am glad to see OR return to SLC and am looking forward to attending again. The hypocrisy in their decision is also very delicious.