If you speak to anybody that comes to this show, most will tell you their maximum enjoyment of being in Vegas is three or four days. While I tend to agree if you’re here for pleasure, the six days I’m here almost doesn’t seem like enough to cover the IPCPR Convention & Trade Show. I’m two days into my stay and I feel like I could’ve used two more before that to prepare.
Regardless, I feel good about the end of the first day of the show, and I certainly have a few thoughts after the doors closed.
1. Floor Layout — There’s a different layout to the floor and it’s noticeably different.
From years past where some complained you could roll a bowling ball down the aisles and not hit anybody, this certainly isn’t the case this year. While the previous statement was more made because that person thought the show was poorly attended, the reality of the situation is much more related to actual booth layout than anything else.
Wide, straight aisles are a thing of the past, with a much more staggered, catawampus positioning of the booth footprints. This has led to the feeling of a much more intimate show, despite the fact it still takes a significant amount of time to walk from one end of the hall to the other.
2. The Forecast Calls for Less Gloomy Skies — For quite a few years now a feeling of gloom—almost dread—had permeated every aspect of the show when it comes to FDA and the rules that were expected, and for the most part unknown.
Last year wasn’t nearly the same gloomy outlook, but instead a frenetic whirlwind of energy with people rushing product out to beat the Aug. 8 deadline and postponing having to deal with the freshly announced rules and regulations. This year the weather has cleared, and the attitude seems to be dogged determination, specifically on figuring out how to continue following a passion in a post-FDA regulated world, though there is certainly at least a little hope that something drastic will change and all this might just blow away in the winds of change.
3. What is this, Orlando? Five years ago at the 2012 IPCPR Convention and Trade Show, there was a feeling of being spread out, separated and disconnected because of the simple fact that everybody had to stay in various hotels in the area surrounding the Orange County Convention Center.
When the show was held at the Sands Expo, the connected Palazzo and Venetian, with the immediate proximity of the Wynn, Encore, Mirage and Treasure Island resorts meant that almost everybody was staying very near the action. This year with the show having been moved to the Las Vegas Convention Center, we’re again seeing that disconnect of Orlando with people spreading out into surrounding hotels.
Some hotels are definitely more occupied than others, but not nearly with the concentration of attendees that I’ve experienced in Las Vegas before.