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February 7, 2011
23rd KTAI Show

The 23rd Annual Kite Trade Association International Trade Show & Convention was held at Texas Station in Las Vegas last week.

Being in Las Vegas "proper" was a nice improvement in facilities, service, and ambiance over the previous meetings in Primm. Gathering in a smokey, noisy casino is still a challenge, of course. Every time someone won $10, I thought my cell phone was ringing! But overall, I have few complains about the location.

I've explained in past years that KTAI is a closed show. The intention is for wholesalers and retailers to meet, review products, and place orders for the coming year. This time, there were 30 exhibiting firms, and 38 buying companies in attendance.

Gomberg Booth

So besides a trade show, what happens at a KTA "convention"??

There are two major retail "idea exchanges" where stores swap information about products, trends and sources. We're a small community and it is gratifying to see firms sharing meaningful details with other sellers -- many of whom might be considered the competition.

IntoTheWind Booth Prism Booth Flapin Flags Booth

New this year was the Exhibitor's Strut. Each manufacturer was given ten minutes to provide details on products and innovations. This new program was viewed by some as a little “hokey or corny” before the show everyone was in agreement afterwards. It was a great idea and greater success!

Rev Booth AKA Booth Phantom Star Booth Int Connections Booth

We also enjoyed a social Welcome Reception and more practical discussion meeting about the state of the Association and plans for future conventions. Product demonstrations were flown in an adjacent parking lot.

X-Kites Booth Premier Booth SkyDogs Booth

Elections for the KTA Board were announced at the Annual Business meeting. Corey Jensen of WindPower Sports will be the new President. Other Board members include Bill Dual of In the Breeze, MaryAnn McVay from Into The Wind, Cath Shook from Flying Smiles Kites, Jim Christianson from Sky Dogs, and Daren Henderson of the San Francisco Kite Company.

HQ Booth Goodwinds Booth NewTech Booth

At the concluding banquet, awards for 2010 were announced.

  • Dave Checkeley Lifetime Achievement Award: Elaine Leitner
    • Retailer of the Year: Ocean Shores Kites
    • Wholesaler of the Year: In the Breeze
    • Best Kite Promotional Effort: KiteLife.com
    • Kite of the year: Rev B Pro

    ITB Booth Cohasset Booth Flying Wings Booth

    Our new Japanese Roks will be here in about ten days. Order one now and be among the first to put one in the sky.

    The four-foot showpieces are completely appliqued and priced to fly at just$70 each

    TUKINAMI Tuki means "push" and nami means "wave". This popular illustration shows the water splashing before the sun.

    WATONAI Watonai is the hero of a famous Joruri or puppet play which was popular in the Edo period.

    KOI In Japanese culture, the Koi represents strength, courage and success in life. On Children's Day in May, Carp windsocks are flown from each home.

    SUKEROKU Sukeroku is a famous Kabuki hero who challenged the rich upper classes and was very popular with the common people -- especially women.

    New Roks

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