Late changes in remodeling plans at the Kentucky Exposition Center (KEC) in Louisville have stripped the Recreation Vehicle Industry Association (RVIA) of 80 supplier booths for the 44th Annual National RV Trade Show Nov. 28-30.
This is a result of losing space in the East Hall lobby and is in addition to manufacturer display space reductions already announced because of remodeling of the KEC’s East Wing.
Mary “Mike” Hutya, RVIA vice president of meetings and shows, said the association found out about the loss of space as the construction schedule for the KEC final remodeling phase was developed.
Although member suppliers are likely to be accommodated when space is assigned, companies should expect some disruption, Hutya wrote in a recent memo.
“The need to accommodate exhibitors who otherwise would be located in the East Hall will have a ripple affect on booth assignments throughout the show,” she wrote.
“Hopefully, no (RVIA) members will be shut out, but they need to get their applications for space in early,” Hutya told RV Business. “For non-members, it may be another story. We had a waiting list last year.”
For the 2005 show, 330 supplier companies occupied 929 10-foot by 10-foot booths while about  20 non-member companies were on a waiting list and were not accommodated, Hutya said.
The East Wing remodeling is the last phase of a $52 million update to the KEC that has disrupted RVIA’s annual trade show for several years. While booking a record 811,000 square feet of display space last year, some 168,000 square feet earlier had been taken out of play for this year’s confab because of the East Wing remodeling.