By Heidi Cleary
The 2015 Recreational Sports Expo in Grapevine, Texas featured 163 outstanding vendors who shared their expertise and new products with over 3,200 attendees and exhibitors. The Expo Hall was truly the place where attendees wanted to stay and play at the 2015 NIRSA Annual Conference!
The Grand Opening of the Expo Hall offered conference attendees appetizers and cash bars, and NIRSA members were crowded outside the doors for the ribbon cutting by NIRSA President Laurie Braden and Executive Director Pam Watts. Once the Expo was officially open, attendees flooded the space and many made a beeline for the NIRSA booth where they picked up their NIRSA Annual Conference backpack.
Some attendees, eager to test their free throw skills, headed straight for the NIRSA Foundation Hoop Shoot sponsored by ECORE Athletic, Porter Athletic, BSN Sports, and the Referee Training Academy. Others made their way to the Fitness Forum presented by Les Mills to get in a great workout or tried out their rodeo skills on the mechanical bull sponsored by mtvU. Large groups gathered in all corners of the crowded hall as attendees mingled with the many vendors who offered giveaways or product testing.
— Vanessa Klapper (@VanessaKlapper) April 1, 2015
Some attendees made a point of getting to the Expo Hall bright and early the next day for the Early Morning Workout while others entered the Expo later that morning and were welcomed by the aroma of fresh brewed coffee courtesy of Sasaki Associates. As the day continued, the Expo was consistently buzzing; it gathered quite a crowd by the time the Ice Cream Social happened that afternoon.
Many attendees had a blast trying out the Bubble Bump Soccer balls and balancing on the Slacklines. At the same time, they still managed to conduct business with the many vendors anxious to share their invaluable knowledge. The NIRSA booth also remained consistently busy handing out backpacks, pens, and collecting entries for the Spinner® NXT Black Belt raffle sponsored by Star Trac. The lucky raffle winner—who received free delivery and set up from Star Trac—was Caroline Dotts of Georgia State University.
Overall, the 2015 NIRSA Recreational Sports Expo was a huge success because of the support of attending vendors, and the continued support of the 31 conference sponsors and NIRSA partners. Many thanks to those who contributed and continue to contribute throughout the year!
For more information about either the 2015 or 2016 NIRSA Recreational Sports Expo, please contact NIRSA Corporate Accounts Manager Heidi Cleary.