Minneapolis CC Sees Increases in Its Consumer Shows

April 27, 2011

The first part of this year has started off on a bright note for the Minneapolis Convention Center, with several consumer shows scoring increases in attendance, compared with last year. The shows ranged from a 6-percent increase all the way to a 26-percent increase in attendance.

The shows that reported higher attendance were the Minneapolis Boat Show, Minneapolis RV, Vacation & Camping Show, Minneapolis Home and Garden Show, Twin Cities Auto Show and Northwest Sportshow.

Besides more people at the shows, they also opened their wallets once they were there on the showfloor and bought more than in previous years, according to Meet Minneapolis officials, the city’s CVB.

“Indications are that consumers felt more confident about their personal financial situations and came to these shows to make purchases that they had perhaps been delaying for the past few years,” the CVB officials added.

Jennifer Thompson, show manager of the Minneapolis Boat Show and Northwest Sportshow, said those two shows saw attendance increases of 26 percent and 14 percent, respectively, compared with last year’s shows.

“Boat dealers at the Minneapolis Boat Show saw sales at the show that they hadn’t seen in years,” Thompson said.

She added, “At our recent Northwest Sportshow, attendees were booking trips with resort owners again, the fishing tackle retailers had one of their best shows in years and boats and RVs continued to sell.”

Katie Smith, director of sales and marketing at the Minneapolis Convention Center, said, “After two to three years of staying in and saving, Minnesotans are ready to get out and do things. Consumer confidence is up, and attendance and sales numbers only reinforced this trend.”

Another sign that people are more willing to spend money is the Minneapolis CC also saw increases in retail sales, with sales up 11 to 38 percent, compared with last year.

These sales occurred in stores located within the center, such as Kelber Catering service and Dunn Bros. café.

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