Western & English Today


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Western & English Today 11 Early Spring 2014 DESPITE "challEngIng" wEaThEr, aETa aTTEnDancE SolID "Without a doubt, the big topic was the weather: If you listened to the news media instead of looking out the window, you'd be afraid to go out, " said Kent Hopper about the inclement weather during the recent American Equestrian Trade Association's International Trade Show, held Jan. 25-27, 2014 at the Greater Philadelphia Expo Center in Oaks, Penn. "But it actually wasn't too bad getting around, and, as always, shuttle buses ferried attendees back and forth between their hotels and the Expo Center." Hopper, whose Hopper Expositions, Inc. produces the AETA Trade Shows, had sold out all available exhibitor space for this year's show. Retail attendance was up 2 percent from the August AETA Trade Show, but down 8 percent from the January 2013 one. "Te numbers tell an interesting story," said Hopper. "Even though retailer attendance was down 8 percent from the past year's January show, hotel room nights booked under the AETA rate were up 8 percent. Attendees extended their stays by a day or more — and had that much more time to buy for their stores and interact with the exhibitors." Speaking of exhibitors: Dale Chavez Saddles received a big "welcome back," having not exhibited on the East Coast for six years. "I think there was a lot of pent-up demand," said Chavez. "By far, this was my biggest, best show on the East Coast … ever." Chavez said that while saddles were the No. 1 sales category, strap goods and halters also sold briskly. Dale Chavez Saddles are the ofcial saddles of both the Western Dressage Association and the Cowboy Dressage. Association. Kerrits — a perennial crowd-pleaser with its high-octane, narrated fashion shows running on the hour — was among the other top brands reporting a successful market. Te August AETA International Trade Show is set for Aug. 16-18, 2014; contact Hopper Expositions for information on exhibiting or attending as a retailer. (800) 945-1208; hopperexpos.com Dale Chavez Saddles' AETA Booth Kerrits AETA Booth 0314 Industry News.indd 11 2/21/14 11:34 AM

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