The Trade Show Challenge

22 Jul

Welcome to RevZilla

I’ve just returned from an install in Bloomsburg PA. What is in Bloomsburg you ask? I’m not sure. I had no time to investigate local history. Bloomsburg seems to consist of two areas, the first is exactly what you would find in every state in the U.S.  a Holiday Inn, with really poor WiFi, a Wal-Mart, [for emergency extension cords] a Ruby Tuesday, where I had to explain how to mix a Manhattan and a selection of other mediocre chain eateries. The highlight of my culinary experience during my stay was breakfast at ” The Cracker Barrel”, the undisputed leader in artificial country kitsch, “Ye Olde” purchased by the pound hung from every surface and a menu featuring chicken fried steak with sawmill gravy. Sawmill? does it contain sawdust and wood shavings?   I dare not  ask.

The second and my reason for being there was an annual gathering of BMW motorcycle enthusiasts. The event is held at the famous Bloomsburg Fairgrounds, a sprawling area that seemed to have jumped from the pages of a 1948 copy of “Boys Life”. If  you think that middle America has disappeared in a sea of tech and economic distress the fairgrounds will put your fears to rest. The Saturday Evening Post is alive and well in Bloomsburg. The Exhibition halls all carried donors plaques to commemorate the civic-minded who support maintenance of this institution. There was even a plaque on the mens room to the generous citizen who paid for the new fixtures in the mens room, [the urinals were plastic incidentally] he must have had a bad year. 

 My client, Revzilla Motorsports,  and I have been mounting an assault on antiquated motorcycle themes for months, I am very pleased that this rally was the perfect opportunity to make waves. We were located in the “Industrial Exhibit Hall” a space intended for display of farm equipment, Massey Ferguson tractors are a far cry from what we had planned. Let me tell you, you are not going to keep them “down on the farm” after they have seen Revzilla. The organizers of the rally and the management of the grounds were somewhat vague about the physical plant and its electrical system from the start [which caused me much stress] as soon as I entered the space I understood their lack of information. When we arrived at our space we were greeted with Burt and Ernie, the electrical crew, rooting through their overloaded golf cart full of ceiling mounted extensions to give us power. They explained that each booth will receive one circuit….I explained that we had 4 computers and enough lighting to stage the Miss America pageant and this one circuit will NOT do. “Ya can’t do that” was Ernie’s reply…so much for their involvement. Lucky for us an organizer later informed us we could run lines to the perimeter wall outlets, some 40 feet away and all I can say is thank you to Pro-Vision[our lighting company] for the abundance of cords and plenty of gaffers tape. Special thanks to Patrick who spent hours and a few shocks running the lines.

Patrick and Anthony lay some tread

My other point of stress was utilizing a company that have always admired but never used prior to this gig. “Pink powered by Moss” is a manufacturer of terrific fabric forms stretched over collapsible aluminum frames. I have always wanted an excuse to sample their services and this was my chance. My first rule in any trade show or exhibit is ” ASSEMBLE EVERYTHING BEFORE THE SHOW” The three pieces we choose were sent right on time, so I started right in. The two smaller “sails” were easy but [due to sometime erratic warehouse shipping] the two did not match. The problem was immediately solved by next day red label, I LOVE good service. Due to the time factor we were unable to assemble the “Event Arch” the big money shot for the entire presentation. I know now why Moss calls it the “Event” the assembly was shall we say an “Event” in itself. Imagine assembling a 20 foot by 10 foot triple arch,then covering it with a one piece “sock” Not easy. After 2 hours of struggling we finally discovered the secret of assembly, dislocate the base and on it went. Learn through trail and error or bring along a Cornell grad to assist you if you ever want to use one yourself.

The "Event" Arch


The show started yesterday and thus far all the brave soldiers are missing in action…I’m sure I will hear something today about our the meantime hit the link to view and look for the next installment of  ” Trade Show Challenge”


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