METROCON16 Expo & Conference: Show Improvements Result in Robust Attendance
METROCON16 brought together more interior designers, architects, facility managers, real estate professionals, design students and other essential industry members catering to the built environment than ever when it took place at Dallas Market Hall on August 11 & 12.
The event, which is the largest not-for-profit, self-produced, volunteer-driven, interior design-focused regional expo and conference in the USA, attracted 2,750 people – a 13% increase from the previous year – from Texas, Oklahoma, and 30 other states.
This year’s trade show was the largest in the show’s history. Exhibitors catering to the corporate, education, healthcare, hospitality, institutional, multifamily, residential, and retail design fields showed in 41,500 SF under 344 vendor names, 96 of which were not on last year’s list. One highlight was the mobile training center by ASID Industry Partner Armstrong World Industries that not only displayed their ceiling and flooring solutions, but also served as a continuing education classroom.
Change Is Good
The Committee of volunteers and I credit the many changes we made to the event for the strong turnout. Not only did we overhaul our website, registration processes, and mobile app, but we also eliminated the trade show fee and offered enhanced programming for both design practitioners and those on the management, sales, and manufacturer sides of our industry.
Besides 50 CEUs with topical subjects like making places age friendly, managing acoustics in the workplace, creating healthy healthcare environments, and harnessing the full potential of LED lighting, METROCON16 also featured industry icon Holly Hunt as Keynote Speaker as well as a preparatory course for the EDAC Exam, a seminar by HKS about their mindful MATERIALS initiative, and a session about “How Investing in Other People’s Success Can Maximize Yours.”
ASID Shined Bright
ASID CEO Randy Fiser, along with Perkins + Will Sustainability Leader for Interiors David Cordell, ASID, LEED AP ID+C, and ASID Research Analyst Susan Chung, presented the CEU “Journey to Health + Wellness: Sustainable Practices for the Individual, Organization & Environment.” Using the new ASID headquarters in Washington, DC – which is anticipated to be the first space in our nation’s capitol to achieve both LEED and WELL Building Platinum certification – as a case study, the team explored the principles to create healthy spaces and the protocols and culture needed to achieve wellness.
Our fellow members and wonderful friends from the ASID Texas Gulf Coast Chapter again this year chartered a bus from Houston, bringing 30+ students, designers, and industry members to Dallas to experience the event and participate in student programming. In fact, they were so enthusiastic that they made special red ASID t-shirts to celebrate the occasion!
Damelia Shaw, ASID’s Director of Strategic Programs and Partnerships, oversaw two programs for students and new graduates on the second day of METROCON16:
- For the second year in a row, ASID brought its Student Roadmap program to METROCON. This hour-long program exclusively for ASID Student Members allowed 44 aspiring designers to experience a curated tour of the expo as to learn how to engage with industry at trade shows. Hugh Scarbrough, ASID, RID, Corey Davey, Allied ASID, and Veronica Sanders, Student ASID, each took small groups around the exhibit floor, visiting the spaces of ASID Industry Partners Bellacor, Benjamin Moore, California Closets, Cambria, FLOR, Hansgrohe, Kelly Moore Paints, Legrand, Sherwin-Williams, and Wilsonart.
- ASID’s well-established Career Exchange, now in its third year at METROCON, brought together 61 students and recent graduates with 25 design professionals and industry representatives. For 90 minutes participants gained insight about the interior design profession and received résumé and portfolio critiques.
Winners to Toast
Congratulations to the following exhibitors who were the recipients of the 2016 Pegasus Exhibitor Awards!
- Best Overall Exhibit – Hawa Americas Inc.
- Most Informative Exhibit – ENSO Fabrication
- Best New Product – Tech Product Specialties
Many thanks to Kenda Draper, ASID, RID, and Corey Davey, Allied ASID, for devoting several hours during the show to be the ASID representatives on the Pegasus Exhibitor Awards judging team.
And cheers to the following 2016 Booth Bingo Winners, each of whom received a $100 American Express Gift Card in the mail after the show:
- Allen Keith, Allied ASID, of Chambers Interiors & Associates (Dallas)
- Tamara Williams, Allied ASID, of Nebraska Furniture Mart (The Colony)
Supporters to Praise
The Committee heartily thanks Landmark Sponsor STAPLES Business Advantage, Media Sponsor Modern Luxury Interiors Texas, and the 49 other 2016 Sponsors for their incredible support. Please join us in thanking the long list of ASID Industry Partners who exhibited at the show, as well as the following IPs who sponsored this year:
Abstract Art by Naomi | American Olean | Arizona Tile | Cambria | Dallas Rugs | Emser Tile | Fiber-Seal | Florida Tile | LDF Silk | Legrand | Paloma Creations | PPG Paints | ProSource Wholesale | Sherwin-Williams | Versteel | Wilsonart LLC
Who else deserves a round of applause? The following companies and people who helped make the ASID Texas Chapter booth a welcoming oasis: ASID Industry Partner Contempo Designs (furnishings), ASID Industry Partner Dallas Rugs (rug), Hugh Scarbrough, ASID, RID (florals), and James Edwards (video).
Last, but absolutely not least, the Committee and I want to express our sincere gratitude to the many volunteers who donated their time on-site during the show to guide attendees, introduce speakers, and monitor CEUs. There is no way that the show would happen without you!
Team Members to Thank
As this year’s Presiding Chair representing the ASID Texas Chapter, I cannot thank my fellow ASID members on the 2016 Committee enough for their time, effort and dedication to make this labor of love so successful for the entire region’s design community (listed in alphabetical order):
- Melinda Crouch, ASID IP Representative – Volunteer Coordinator
- Dianne Etheredge, ASID, RID – Asst. Sponsor Liaison
- Theresa Harrison, ASID IP Representative – Asst. Volunteer Coordinator
- Isin King, Allied ASID – Asst. Exhibitor Liaison
- Annette Mallard, ASID, RID – Co-Chair Elect
- Rosemarie René, ASID, RID – Sponsor Liaison
- Shawn Shannon, Allied ASID – Catering Chair
I would also like to thank the Metrocon, Inc. staff for their hard work all year long: Show Manager & Promoter Laura McDonald Stewart, FASID, LEED AP, RID, and Bookkeeper Tara Murphy.
Great Things on the Horizon
Metrocon, Inc. will be undergoing even more exciting changes in the coming year, allowing the ASID Texas Chapter to partner and collaborate with even more members of our built environment. Visit metrocon.info to find links to view photos from this year’s show and to sign up to receive notifications to stay informed about attending, presenting, sponsoring, and exhibiting at METROCON17, which will take place back at Dallas Market Hall on August 10 & 11, 2017. See you there!