We could start off 2011 IFTD show coverage by making a joke about finding that there was no free internet access for media, despite assurances from show organizers that there was (apparently it was a “union issue”).
Instead, we’ll start by posting a few notes of interest. First, the show seems well-attended, at perhaps 70% of last year’s exhibitor numbers, and most of the big players are here. After sitting out last year, Orvis took Simms’s front-door spot. SA, Smith, Sage and others are all first-row exhibitors. There appear to be about 160 exhibitors in all.
Second, a brief conversation with AFFTA’s new president, Jim Klug, produced the following teaser: “The show will definitely not be coming back to Denver next year.” AFFTA plans to make a major announcement tomorrow, Klug said.
Third, perhaps in compensation for having lost an hour getting an Internet connection, a traditional Scottish bagpipe troop opened the show with a musical flourish. It might be our imagination, but the mood already seems a more upbeat than it has in recent years.