Show management firm H.H. Backer has canceled the Spring Total Pet Expo, scheduled April 9-11 at the Atlantic City Convention Center in Atlantic City, N.J. The reason given is poor exhibitor interest.
“We simply could not get enough exhibitor support this year to allow us to produce the quality spring trade show that people have come to expect,” says Colette Fairchild, show director.
The show, formerly called the Pet Industry Spring Trade Show, rebranded itself when it moved back to Atlantic City from Baltimore in 2010. Despite the change of location and a move to a weekend and a biennial schedule—there was no 2013 event—the show hasn’t kept pacewith the company’s stronger fall show, the Fall Total Pet Expo, set for Sept. 19-21 in Rosemont, Ill.
By contrast, H.H. Backer has already announced dates for the September show through 2020 at the Donald E. Stephens Convention Center in Rosemont. The company is promoting the fact that “all shows will take place on Friday, Saturday and Sunday and do not conflict with the Jewish holidays or Canadian Thanksgiving.”
The spring show cancellation comes just two months before the event. Exhibitors who already signed up will get full refunds or the opportunity to apply their deposits to booths at the fall show in Rosemont. Baker says what she called the “flagship event” will continue to take place annually.
Despite a postponement followed by a cancellation, the company hasn’t formally addressed the future of the spring event.