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Sept/Oct
2002

At Massive RTDA 2002
Traffic only seemed lighter.

Staff Report

The 70th Annual RTDA Convention & International Trade Show, held July 22-25, 2002 at the Sands Expo Center in Las Vegas, Nevada was the largest ever in size. A total of 304 companies occupied 1,003 exhibit booths, showing the continuing growth of the RTDA and the industry. Perhaps it was this massive, record-breaking expanse of real estate that gave some exhibitors the impression that attendance was lighter this year, when in fact the number of retailers in attendance was up.

According to the RTDA, attendance - when calculated as the number of retail shops in attendance - nearly equaled the highs of 1998 and 1999, when 1,069 and 1,066 retailers attended, respectively. This year, 960 retail companies attended, 44 more companies than last year, representing 2,502 individuals, or an increase of 321 people. The association noted that about 60 badges were confiscated after security witnessed retailers and exhibitors handing them off to unauthorized individuals.

With few exceptions, exhibitors indicated the show was an unqualified success, noted Dave Huggins of the RTDA. Next year's RTDA trade show will take place at the Gaylord Palms Hotel, Orlando, Fla. August 10-13, 2003.



SMOKESHOP - Aug/Sept, 2002