The 2023 Equip Exposition was a record-setting show with more than 27,000 attendees participating in the annual Louisville-based event.
For green industry contractors and exhibitors, the show provided an opportunity to learn about the latest advancements in technology and improvements in services, as well as take advantage of educational curricula.
“We are very, very pleased with the caliber and of contacts we’ve made here of the leads and with the engagement,” says Ray Lamovec, director, training and service for Irrigreen, Edina, Minnesota. “Contractors have been very engaged, very excited to learn about technology. It’s interesting because, having exhibited at several contractor shows before, this one really takes the cake as far as being a good show for a good caliber of clientele and guys who are willing to learn how to grow their business.”
For Dylan Stapp, director of sales and co-founder of Turf Tech Kentucky, attending one of the educational sessions titled “How to Get Into the Irrigation Business,” was a way to learn more about supplementing their existing irrigation business.
“This is kind of our second year so it was nice just to kind of fill in some of the gaps,” Stapp says.
He’s interested in receiving more formal education about the irrigation industry because it’s run more similarly to HVAC or plumbing businesses and requires more formalized training and certification.
The session Stapp and his team attended was hosted by the Irrigation Association, Fairfax, Virginia, and was part of a series of presentations tailored for landscape contractors interested in learning more about business and technical aspects of irrigation.
“The 2023 Equip Exposition provided an illustration of the level of interest green industry contractors have in irrigation,” says Sandra Kim, CAE, CMP, professional development and strategic programs director at the Irrigation Association.
Of the six classes offered by the association, two classes were completely sold out and two additional sessions had more than 90% occupancy.
“I’m very pleased to see our irrigation programming not only resonate but also sell out completely in several cases,” adds Kim. “It’s a clear sign that the contractors are ready to take advantage of the opportunities that irrigation products and services can provide in growing their business.”
Organizers of the 2023 Equip Exposition say that next year’s event will offer additional entertainment and educational experiences.
“Building on the success of this year’s show, we continue to incorporate new experiences for 2024. We’re currently looking for talent for another Yum! Center concert and building out the slate of speakers for our education series,” says Kris Kiser, president and CEO of the Outdoor Power Equipment Institute, which owns Equip Exposition. “Every year, Equip Exposition invests in and commits to making the user experience unique in response to the industry’s needs, demands and market changes. So while it will be the same show you’ve always loved — it will just get better.”