OFA Short Course One of Largest U.S. Trade Shows

May 20, 2005 - 11:47

The OFA Short Course trade show has been named as one of the 200 largest trade shows of 2004 by the annual edition of the Tradeshow Week 200. With 133,000 net square feet of paid exhibit space, the OFA Short Course ranked 196 in the United States for 2004.

Tradeshow Week 200 magazine has been the premier weekly news magazine serving the exhibition industry for more than 34 years, and it annually ranks the impact of trade shows by the net square footage of space sold. According to the magazine, net square footage for trade shows increased by 2-plus percent in 2004. The OFA Short Course trade show was no exception — growing from 130,600 net square feet of paid exhibit space in 2003.

“I’m extremely proud of this honor,” said Wendy McAtee, OFA director of expositions. “This is a prestigious list to make, and I’ve worked most of my career to get this show in the top 200. It’s been one of my goals since we were a 200-booth show many years ago.” McAtee joined the OFA staff in 1980.

The OFA Short Course tradeshow has grown steadily over the past 76 years. In 1964, the Short Course — which also features a large number of educational sessions for all areas of floriculture — had an attendance of 1,000 and a 50-booth tradeshow. In 1981, the Short Course moved from one downtown hotel to the Ohio Center and the Hyatt Regency Columbus Hotel. Attendance was 2,200, and the tradeshow featured 259 booths.

In 1991, the Short Course moved to Cincinnati, Ohio, and the tradeshow expanded to 599 spaces. In 1998, Short Course came back to Columbus, and the tradeshow featured more than 900 tradeshow booths. By 2004, the tradeshow grew to 1,330-plus spaces, and overall attendance topped 9,800. The OFA Short Course is contracted to be held at the Greater Columbus Convention Center in Columbus, Ohio through 2010.

The OFA Short Course is sponsored by OFA — an Association of Floriculture Professionals, a non-profit educational organization with 3,300 members worldwide. OFA has 77 percent of its membership outside of Ohio and 7 percent outside the United States.

For more information, visit www.tradeshowweek.com, or contact OFA at (614) 487-1117.

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