Surf Expo: Support For The Industry’s First Back-To-School/Fall Show Overwhelming

Anticipation for the Surf Expo Back-to-School/Fall West show at the Anaheim Convention Center, March 11-12, continues to grow as the retailers and manufacturers gear up the surf/skate and youth culture industry’s first dedicated back-to-school trade show.

“Early indicators are strong. The support from manufacturers has been phenomenal and more than 700 key retailers have already pre-registered or indicated they are planning to attend the show,” said Lori Kisner, vice president of dmg world media/Surf Expo. “We are expecting an unparalleled event.”

“The retailers who have agreed to help us create a business-first marketplace for this season by participating on our Retail Advisory Panel are among the top in the nation. And the list of exhibitors at Surf Expo’s Back-to-School/Fall West reads like a Who’s Who of the alternative sport and active lifestyle industries.”

Dave Hollander, president of Becker Surfboards in Corona Del Mar, Cal., is one of the Retail Advisors looking forward to the Surf Expo BTS/Fall West show. “I heard this will be a working show and so Iëm going in there with that attitude,” said Hollander. “At the other shows you just can’t work.”

“I already have appointments set and I expect to do in two days what usually takes me six days elsewhere,” Hollander concluded.

The opportunity to see the industry leaders’ lines in one venue while saving significant time is also important to Dave Nash, president of Sun Diego, a southern California retailer with five retail stores in the San Diego area.

“The industry has needed this fall show for a long time. We are going to take some of our marquee buyers to the Anaheim show where I expect to see all the major lines at one time.”

“To do the same thing outside of the BTS show, I’d have to pull people out of the stores over a period of a month and a half.”

The introduction of the Surf Expo’s new Back-to-School/Fall series on the West Coast and East Coast has also generated high expectations among the industry manufacturers.

“The timing is perfect for men’s, boys’ and our new juniors’ lines,” said Royce Cansler, EVP at Ezekiel. “We have already gotten a good response from our marketing, including a three-hour appointment booked by my largest Southern California account.”

“It’s great that the Surf Expo Anaheim show is the kick-off for the series because our strongest West Coast accounts will be there. With the BTS East and Wilmington shows following, I can see our three strongest regions in two weeks, booking more than 20 appointments per show. The three Surf Expo BTS/Fall shows are the key shows for the whole season.”

Tom Holbrook, Quiksilver EVP of sales, echoed the importance of the fall season. “The back-to-school market continues to grow and develop. We are looking forward to the Anaheim show because it’s going to be a great working venue for the regional accounts.”

Surf Expo Committed to the Back-to-School/Fall Market, Future Dates Confirmed

Surf Expo’s BTS/Fall West show is the culmination of nearly three years of research into the rapidly growing back-to-school market that included the purchase of the East Coast RAD Shows and the early 2001 announcement of the first West Coast BTS event.

“There are already several hotel rep shows in Southern California. So our goal early on was to produce a convention center show where buyers would be able to see all the Back-to-School lines in their entirety in a forum that met retailers’ and manufacturers’ timing requirements,” noted Kisner. “Our original show plan called for a five-year growth strategy, but, frankly, the incredible support we’ve received has enabled us to move up our goals.”

“It’s been awesome to see it all come together and we look forward to seeing the show continue to grow in the coming years.”

The Back-to-School/Fall future dates are March 18-19, 2003 and March 13-14, 2004. Reflecting the industry’s preference for a convention center-based event, the Surf Expo BTS/Fall shows will be held in the Anaheim Convention Center.

The exhibitors for the BTS/Fall West show, committed as of February 25, 2002, include:
Aaron Chang Clothing
A & A Sales Inc.
Aloha Marketing
Alstyle Apparel
Bamboo 2 U
BC Ethic
Billabong Girls
Bodyboarding Magazine
Body Glove
Burn LLC
CAM Commerce Solutions
Counter Culture
C-Ya in California
Dean Miller Surf Bedding
Dragonfly Clothing Company
Duke Kahamamoku
Earthboard Sports USA, Inc.
Elenex Clothing
Enchanted Lantern
Ezekiel Clothing
Ezekiel Girls
Fa Dunk Clothing
Far Away Imports, Inc.
Girl Star
Gypsy Angel
Hawk Clothing Inc.
Hot Girls
IMG Outdoors
Lazy Bagz
Legend Polarized Eyewear
Metropolitan Prairie
Ocean & Earth USA
Ocean Pacific
Osiris Shoes
Quiksilver Accessories/Wetsuits
Rietveld USA
Rip Curl
Robert August Surfwear
Rusty Girls
Sandstone Stickers
Sanuk USA
Soft Surfboards
Sotnick Fashion Accessories
Surfing Girl Magazine
Surfing Magazine
Surf Safari
Sugar and Spice
Tiki Farm
Toes on the Nose
Wahine Dreams

BTS West times and events include:
Surf Expo Back-to-School West
Monday, March 11 9 a.m. — 6 p.m.
Tuesday, March 12 9 a.m. — 5 p.m.
Anaheim Convention Center
Anaheim, CA

First Annual BTS West Golf Tourney & Reception
Coyote Hills Golf Course, Fullerton
Sunday, March 10 Noon start
Cost: $100 per player (includes lunch, green fee, cart fee, range & 2 drink tickets)
Prizes will be awarded for top three teams, top three individual winners, closest to pin (Par 3) and longest drive. Reception following in the clubhouse.

Industry Roundtable: Consolidating Line Breaks & Deliveries for the Fall/BTS Season
Monday, March 11 4 p.m.

Surf and skate apparel manufacturers and retailers will have the unique opportunity to present their viewpoints on Back-to-School merchandise dating at this industry roundtable. Join a panel of industry manufacturers and retailers for this discussion open to all registered retailers and manufacturers and industry media. Panel participants will include:

Randy Blumer, Honolua Surf Co.
Jurgen Schulz, K-5 Boardrider Shop
John Sabo, Ron Jon Surf Shop
Roy Turner, Surf City
Chris Raya, Counter Culture
Royce Cansler, Ezekiel
Tom Holbrook, Quiksilver

BTS West Industry Reception
Monday, March 11 5:30 p.m. (Approximate time)
A reception for show attendees, exhibitors and media will begin immediately after the Roundtable at the Anaheim Convention Center. Be sure to be there for the hors d’ouevres, beer and margaritas.

Surf Expo BTS/Fall West is open to the trade only. For more retailer information or to preregister for the BTS/Fall West show, call 800-947-7873 or go to