As for ISE, from the minute I walked in the door, I’ve been thinking “I do not know what more ISE could do to make a more friendly and alluring environment for the sake of fly fishing… particularly exposing potential newbies (general outdoors folks) to this sport.”
Fly fishing is literally the nucleus of that show. From the casting ponds in the heart of the floor plan to the free casting lessons offered by Orvis, Angling University, Far Bank, and others… all the things that I, as editor of Angling Trade, have been harping on the industry to help pump life into our sport, were happening at ISE. It was heartwarming.
At the same time, across town, Chuck Furimsky’s The Fly Fishing Show was also bustling, catering to another highly dedicated crowd of fly fishing aficionados. For the record, I think it’s great to cater to “the base” with a consumer event focused on fly fishing. That’s a tradition, not just a happening.
What’s not so cool, from my perspective now, is the behind the scenes chatter I heard as both events took place, and afterward:
“This show is filled with bubbas who don’t really fly fish.”
“That show is ‘old,’ it’s 10-to-1 people over 50 versus younger people.”
“This one is a ‘flea market’… that one is an indoor ‘county fair’.”
And so on, and so on…
The thing is… why can’t we have it all? And why can’t fly fishing benefit from a coordinated, not competitive, scenario where we endeavor to reach all audiences—the hard core anglers, and the dabblers—with strategic precision?
The real question is, must these consumer shows be on the same weekend? I’ve heard it both ways. The two birds, one stone buy alprazolam next day delivery perspective: “It’s great to have both events on the same weekend… we drove in from Nebraska, and made it a weekend to hit both events.”
But I’ve also heard many more locals who by now are confused, even agitated by having to choose one option over another. In many cases, these people have consciously chosen not to choose at all.
How do you feel about this? As a retailer, whether you’re based in the Denver area or not…
Angling Trade is now en route to The Fly Fishing Show in Somerset, New Jersey, to get a clearer picture of the national consumer show landscape. And you can expect more detailed commentary on this topic in the March print issue of the magazine.
Having spoken with the top brass at AFFTA, ISE, and the Fly Fishing Show, I think the climate may be right to move past the competition in Denver.
In my mind it really shouldn’t be a competition between one show versus another. It should be a competition between generating exposure and excitement around fly fishing, versus complacency, egos, and lacking the will to work together for a common strategic good. Whatever statements had to be made, were made. The war is over. The economic climate may be looking up. It’s time to get smart and move on… together.
International Sportsmen’s Expositions Contact Info:
Monday to Friday 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. (Pacific)
PO Box 2569
Vancouver, WA 98668
Brent Layng Sales Manager 360-397-0216
The Fly Fishing Show Contact Info:
Fly Fishing Show
531 North Center Ave.
Somerset, PA 15501
Toll Free: (866) 481-2393
Phone: (814) 443-3638
Fax: (814) 443-3943
Email: [email protected]