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Jan 2018


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February 2 0 1 8

T R A D E  S H O W  N E W S

The Rocky Mountain Gift Show

The Rocky Mountain Gift Show is quickly approaching and the excitement around the show is building. We have incredible seminar speakers and we are bringing back the Buyers Choice Award! Come learn about new strategies to improve and grow your business from our speakers and check out all the newest and most popular products competing for the Buyers Choice Award!

The Buyers Choice Award is making its second appearance at The Rocky Mountain Gift Show this February 2018! All of the buzz generated from our previous show about these featured products was incredible and created even more entries for this show! Some of the Buyers Choice Award candidates this year include Yesterdays line, Wooly Threads showroom M1325 , Capsmith Inc in booths X614, X616 and McCrea’s Candies in booth X532. Make sure you come and check out these products and more. Come cast your vote for the Buyers Choice Award!

Our amazing seminar speakers include Greg Jameson and Nicole Leinbach-Reyhle. Greg Jameson is a two time number one best-selling author of The Influencer Effect. Greg will be here to talk about how influencers can make your sales soar and how to amplify your online presence to gain repeat visitors that eventually become customers. Nicole Leinbach-Reyhle is the founder of the publication Retail Minded. Nicole will be diving into four different topics to help your retail business. These topics include ways to make 2018 your best year, retail &technology, mastering customer service and marketing on a dime! You will not want to miss either of these speakers at The Rocky Mountain Gift Show this February!

February 2018 Dates:
Gift Showrooms: February 21-26
Apparel Showrooms: February 23-26
Mart Temps: February 22-26
Expo and Plaza Temps: February 23-26
(To register visit:

ToyFest West

ToyFest West Announces Retailer of the Month Campaign

Western Toy & Hobby Representatives Association (WTHRA) President Bill St. John announced a new campaign that will feature and honor retail stores in the Western States, “Retailer of the Month.” St. John said, “This is our way of thanking and awarding those retailers that work hard 365 days a year and bring value to the Toy Industry as well as the local community.”

Retail stores, manufacturers, reps and customers are encouraged to submit an application on ToyFest to nominate a retail toy, gift, baby, educational or e-tail store they value, enjoy and find deserving of this honor. The WTHRA Slate of Officers will choose a retailer to be featured each month starting January of 2018. A recipient of the Retailer of the Month award will be featured on the ToyFest West (TFW) website with a photo, short bio about the store and its owners, receive a framed certificate to hang in their store and will be announced on the TFW social media pages.

WTHRA will continue to honor Retailer of the Year and Hall of Fame Inductees with an invitation to the ToyFest West Gala. These pioneers and leaders in the toy industry are chosen by Chairman of the Board, Blake Goldenberg, with nominations from WTHRA’s Board of Directors and TFW’s Slate of Officers. Hall of Fame Inductees and Retailer of the Year will be announced in December 2017.

ToyFest West is hosted by Western Toy & Hobby Representatives Association and will take place at the South Point Hotel, Casino & Spa, March 11-13, 2018.

ToyFest West 2018 show times:
Sunday, March 11: 10 a.m. - 6 p.m.
Monday, March 12: 9 a.m. - 6 p.m.
Tuesday, March 13: 9 a.m. - 5 p.m.
(For more information about ToyFest West visit

Connect with ToyFest West
Hashtag: #toyfestwest
Linked In:

Urban Expositions

January 2018 Philadelphia Gift Show Attracts Region’s Retailers With New Vendors, Best-Selling Brands and Candy Show Co-Location

The Best New Product was awarded to VIM & VIGR® of Missoula, Mont.

As the first gift trade show of the year, the January 5-8, 2018, edition of the Philadelphia Gift Show welcomed retailers from throughout the Mid-Atlantic and Tri-State areas who came to see the show’s newest features, including Artisan Alley, an expanded Makers Market showcase, 100+ first-time exhibitors and the newest introductions for Spring and beyond. In addition, the Philadelphia Gift Show once again co-located with the Philadelphia National Candy Gift & Gourmet Show, giving retailers even more to explore.

Adding to the show excitement, retailers had the chance to vote for a number of awards, including Best New Product, which was awarded to VIM & VIGR® designer compression socks with health benefits from Missoula, Mont.

In addition, Asheville-based artist Kelsey Schissel of Plays in Mud Pottery received the Best Made in America product award at the winter edition. Schissel is the creator of the delightful “Adventuring Owls” and unique and distinctive handmade pottery designs, which include vases, mugs, tea sets, yarn bowls and other vessels.

Asheville-based artist Kelsey Schissel of Plays in Mud Pottery received the Best Made in America product award at the winter edition.

“The Philadelphia Gift Show continues to be the market for Northeastern retailers to shop a well-defined selection of top lines, best-selling brands and meet with their regional reps,” said Sonya Lowe, show director, Philadelphia Gift Show. “Having all of these resources under one roof is a tremendous benefit for our buyers. It gives them a cost-effective, convenient opportunity to spend time building relationships with vendors, scouting new products and completing their buying needs just in time for spring.”

The winter 2018 edition once again co-located with the Retail Confectioners Association of Philadelphia’s (RCAP) 137th Philadelphia National Candy Gift & Gourmet Show giving retailers throughout the Northeast region the opportunity to take advance of crossover buying opportunities afforded by the show’s selection of candy, chocolate, gourmet specialties and other ideal impulse items.

The winter 2018 edition once again co-located with the Retail Confectioners Association of Philadelphia's (RCAP) 137th Philadelphia National Candy Gift & Gourmet Show.

In addition to the show’s co-location, the Philadelphia Gift Show also debuted its new Artisan Alley section, connecting emerging, never-before-seen artisans with retailers seeking regional specialties and one-of-a-kind handmade designs. The new Artisan Alley section expanded the Philadelphia Gift Show’s popular Makers’ Market handmade offerings with the addition of 20-plus talented artists featured in a carefully curated showcase.

“I was particularly impressed with the new artists and the handmade and the one-of-a-kind items I found in Makers’ Market and Artisan Alley,” said Suzanne Sopko, Skytop Lodge, Skytop, Pa. “The Philadelphia Gift Show is always a good show for me.”

The January edition also welcomed 100 first-time exhibitors, who joined hundreds of leading manufacturers, regional sales representatives and top lines in every product category ranging from giftware, souvenir and artisan designs to floral resources, home accents, seasonal items and more.

The Philadelphia Gift Show will return July 22-25, 2018 to the Greater Philadelphia Expo Center.

“I’ve been coming to the Philadelphia Gift Show for many years, and I love all of the new products I found in January, said Lois Warden, Carroll Hospital Gift Shop, Westminster, Md. ” I spent a good bit of my time shopping for new items, and I placed orders with several new vendors at the show.”

“I found several vendors that were suitable for our Zoo & Aquarium Group (ZAG) buyers and sponsors at the show,” added Steve Fairchild, Sedgwick County Zoo, Wichita, Kan. “This semi-annual show’s winter and summer show dates are perfectly timed to help our zoo and aquarium merchandise buyers with their spring season and for filling inventory gaps and finding new vendors for fall.”

The Philadelphia Gift Show continued many of its convenient onsite buyer services, including free pop-up programs, seminars and demonstrations.

The Philadelphia Gift Show also continued many of its convenient onsite buyer services, including free pop-up programs, seminars and demonstrations held in the Discovery Zone on Saturday and Sunday; daily retailer prize giveaways from exhibitors, $100 merchandise credit giveaways, daily popcorn socials, and the “stay for the last day” promotion inviting buyers to shop the last day of the show and enjoy free lunch and show specials offered by exhibitors on Monday, January 8.

The Philadelphia Gift Show will return July 22-25, 2018, to the Greater Philadelphia Expo Center. For exhibitor information, contact Sonya Lowe, Urban Expositions, 1690 Roberts Blvd NW, Suite 111, Kennesaw, Ga., 30144. Phone: 678-370-0350, email: . For buyer information or to register, attendees can call 800-318-2238 or visit


John C. Portman, Jr., 1924 - 2017
John C. Portman, Jr.

John C. Portman, Jr., one of Atlanta’s greatest champions, died December 29, 2017, at the age of 93. As an architect, real estate developer, entrepreneur, artist and altruist, Portman had a dramatic impact on Atlanta’s success and growth as a major international city and similar impact on other major cities throughout the world. He is internationally recognized for significant urban mixed-use complexes wherein his understanding of people and their response to space translates into enhanced environments and award-winning architecture. For Portman, design decisions were always rooted in the interpretation of basic human needs. Portman believed that architecture was created for, and exists to serve, life - to serve people - and Portman recognized that all people, wherever they live, are more alike than different. From Embarcadero Center in San Francisco and Times Square in New York, to Marina Square in Singapore and Shanghai Centre in China, he took people away from the congestion of urban life by creating spaces that are open and uplifting to the human spirit. Portman pioneered the role of architect/developer, weathering tremendous criticism from members of the architectural profession who viewed this as a conflict of interest. The first project for which he served in this dual role was in the design and development of the initial Atlanta Merchandise Mart, now AmericasMart Atlanta. When Portman founded the Atlanta Merchandise Mart in an old converted office building in 1957, some were abandoning the city’s core in favor of the suburbs and vacant building were becoming eyesores or being leveled for parking lots.

Portman was raised in Atlanta. His family lived adjacent to the downtown area; his dad worked downtown and, as a teenager, so did Portman. He always had a great love of the area and for all its people. When success dictated building a new, larger building for the Atlanta Merchandise Mart, he made the decision to build it downtown to encourage further development, reenergize the city and save the area for future generations. In spite of many obstacles and huge financial risks, he did it. Before the Mart’s new million-square-foot building opened in 1962, Portman made the decision that its two restaurants would be Atlanta’s first integrated eateries open to all of his fellow citizens. He made no big to-do about this and the restaurants quietly flourished. Continuing his vision of revitalizing downtown Atlanta, Portman began the development of a world-class mixed-use complex, Peachtree Center, with office towers, retail and restaurants. In 1965, he began the design and development of the Hyatt Regency Atlanta hotel as the complex’s third building. From the beginning, he was determined to make it the first integrated hotel in Atlanta and through many difficulties creating the project, his determination to integrate the facility prevailed. Because of its unique design featuring the first modern hotel atrium, the Hyatt became the most notable hotel in the world. In 1975, Portman designed and developed the Westin Peachtree Plaza, which opened as the tallest hotel in North America. The hotel included a kosher kitchen, making it the first public facility in the city that could properly serve kosher meals. Competitive facilities followed and, today, kosher facilities are now available in most Atlanta area event venues. Portman continued to develop Peachtree Center over the past 55 years and it now occupies 14 city blocks and includes approximately 21 buildings that contain 20 million square feet - a feat accomplished utilizing no public funds. The success of Peachtree Center achieved Portman’s vision of attracting further development. Downtown Atlanta has flourished, serving as a catalyst for the extraordinary success and growth of the entire region.

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