Exhibitor info

The 4th Annual Outdoor Economy Conference (OEC), “Stewards of Opportunity,” will be an in person multi-day event held in Cherokee, NC on October 12th-15th, 2021. The convening includes a broad range of stakeholders, catalyzes meaningful action, and showcases WNC as the leading region for outdoor industry on the East Coast. 

This year’s Conference includes a 16,000sf Expo Hall; many categories of Sponsors receive Expo Booth spaces as part of their sponsorship packages, and we also offer standalone Exhibitor / Vendor registration as well. Below, you’ll find a brief overview of the 2021 Outdoor Economy Conference topics, the kinds of organizations and businesses we encourage to apply as exhibitors, a quick overview of the conference schedule, and a detailed walkthrough of the exhibitor guidelines for the event.

Conference Programming Overview

Four key topics will be covered at this year’s OEC, thereby driving the audience at the event:

  1. Sustainable Outdoor Recreation Tourism
    Ensuring that outdoor recreation destinations continue to drive their local economies, by activating people to recreate responsibly and care for our lands and waters, channeling visitors to underutilized locations, improving infrastructure, and increasing visitor spending.
  2. Outdoor-Driven Economic Development
    Providing strategies and tools that economic developers and communities can use to leverage their outdoor assets to recruit, retain, and grow businesses and a high-quality workforce.
  3. Balancing Conservation & the Outdoor Economy
    Building partnerships and creative programs that balance the protection of our lands and water, the lifeblood and infrastructure of the outdoor economy, with rural economic development.
  4. Responsible Outdoor Product Innovation
    Designing the kinds of products and service offerings that ensure the outdoor economy has a net-positive impact on our places and people.

Who Should Apply to be an Exhibitor?

Outdoor Economy Organizations who represent any part of the outdoor economy and its value chain, whose mission, business and organization is to promote, provide support for, enable, or provide equipment for the outdoor industry. Examples include:

  • Outdoor Industry Businesses
  • Non-Profits
  • Supply Chain Businesses and Allied Industries
  • Local, State, and Federal Government
  • Economic Development and Tourism
  • Education + Workforce Development
  • Land Managers and Conservation


Professional Service Providers
such as Consultants, Media, PR, Legal and other Corporate Partners who want to support the Outdoor Industry.

If you would like to be a conference exhibitor but do not feel that you fit into one of the above categories, or have any questions, please contact: Melissa Scheiderer, [email protected].

Summary Schedule & Exhibitor Hours of Operation

We are actively programming the Expo Hall to allow opportunities for you and your staff to enjoy the content as much as possible, and make the most of the many dedicated times when we are sending people to the Expo. Please respect the programming in the Expo Hall’s theater area, and minimize conversations and noise at your booth during those times so all attendees are able to enjoy the in-Expo Hall programming like our Kickoff and Plenary Sessions.

  • Tuesday, Oct 12
  • Wednesday, Oct 13
  • Thursday, Oct 14
  • Friday, Oct 15

Time

events

Location

Exhibitor Load-In & Set-Up

Individualized load-in times to be determined by exhibitors and Conference staff after exhibitor registration is completed

Expo Hall

general attendee registration

Welcome Reception

Expo Hall

Time

events

Location

Breakfast

Expo Hall

Plenary Session

Expo Hall

Breakout Sessions

Breakout rooms

Networking Lunch

Expo Hall

Excursions

offsite

happy hour

expo hall

Time

events

Location

Breakfast

Expo Hall

Plenary Session

Expo Hall

Breakout Sessions

Breakout rooms

Networking Lunch

Expo Hall

Breakout Sessions

Breakout rooms

Closing Ceremony

expo hall

wnc LOCAL FOOD & CRAFT BEVERAGE tasting Happy Hour

expo hall

Evening Festivities & afterparty

tbd

Time

events

Location

BREAKFAST (in Ballrooms Area)

Ballrooms

Expo tear-down

Expo Hall

See full schedule at the Outdoor Economy Conference website.

*IMPORTANT: Hours of Operation subject to change prior to conference. The final schedule will be distributed to all exhibitors by October 11, 2021. 

Exhibitor / Vendor Selection Process and Guidelines

Please review the following information about the Exhibitor / Vendor selection process and operating guidelines, and once you’ve done so, apply here for your booth space.

Application Process

All Exhibitor Applications must be received no later than September 3, 2021. The Selection Committee will review exhibitor applications on an ongoing basis, as received, and exhibitors will be notified no later than September 10, 2021.

Selection

The Selection Committee will select exhibitors and provide notification by no later than September 10, 2021. All fees are due by September 24, 2021. All vendors and exhibitors must comply with State of North Carolina sales tax and Business License regulations, City Building and fire regulations, and those terms defined by the Health Department. The OEC reserves the right of approval for the exhibition unit. The OEC reserves the right to deny entry to organizations or to classify them in the category we determine is most fitting. Once approved, exhibitors will receive a registration payment link, and once payment is made, a detailed packet of exhibitor information will be provided.

Booth Types & Fees

  • Table (8’ draped table, NO power, one attendee registration) | $500
  • Non-Profit Table (8’ draped table, NO power, one attendee registration) | $300
  • Standard Booth (10’ wide x 8’ deep, one draped 8’ table, power available, one attendee registration) | $750
  • Non-Profit Standard Booth (10’ wide x 8’ deep, one draped 8’ table, power available, one attendee registration) | $375
  • Double Booth (20’ wide x 8’ deep, two draped 8’ tables, power available, two attendee registrations) | $1,500
  • Custom Size (quantity of attendees TBD, power available) | Please contact Melissa Scheiderer, [email protected].
  • Basic booth materials (tables, pipe & drape, power outlets, trash can, basic linens, etc.) are provided by Harrah’s Cherokee, and included in the booth price.
  • Booth decoration services are the responsibility of the exhibitor.

Load-In/Load-Out Guidelines & Schedule

Expo Load-In: Tuesday, 10/12, 9:00 am – 4:00 pm EDT

Expo Load-Out: Friday, 10/15, 9:00 am – 12:00 pm EDT

  • All exhibitors bringing equipment or materials associated with a convention event should enter the Exhibit Hall area through the loading docks on level one of the Cherokee Convention Center parking garage. 
  • The loading docks on level one of the parking garage will lead directly into the Cherokee Exhibit Hall. Vehicles can be parked at this location for unloading and loading but should be moved as soon as possible.  
  • OEC organizers must be notified of any item that is too large to load in through the standard loading docks prior to arrival of the item. The dimensions of the standard loading dock is 6’8” wide X 10’ high. There is a larger dock that must be booked in advance if needed. Those dimensions are 10’ wide X 14’ high.


If you will be having out-of-state production company tractor trailers making a delivery to The Cherokee Convention Center, please note that there are no parking facilities for these trailers on  property. Please communicate with Melissa Scheiderer (
[email protected]) if arrangements need to be made. If you are not able to load-in/-out during these times and require special accommodations, please contact Melissa Scheiderer ([email protected]).

Parking

  • Both Complimentary Valet and Self-Parking are available for all hotel guests.
  • Complementary Self-Parking is available for all registered conference attendees (including those not staying at the on-site hotel). 
  • All parking is first come, first served, and based on availability. 
  • Garages are open 24 hours and are always staffed and Security monitored.

Shipping

All materials shipped to the CONVENTION PACKAGE CENTER must have the following information on the shipping label: 

 

The Cherokee Convention Center

Attention: Jennifer Rose, Convention Services Manager

Outdoor Economy Conference, 10/12/21

123 Harrah’s Service Drive

Cherokee, NC 28719

 

  • Packages must note the convention event and be marked with “Sample” or “Demo”, regardless of whether the materials are brochures or promotional items.  All shipping orders will be returned to sender if they arrive any sooner or are improperly labeled.
  • Boxes are to be delivered to the Hotel no more than (3) three days in advance of the event.
  • All shipped packages will be held in a secure area and will be signed in and out by the exhibitor’s pre-selected representative. All designated company representatives must provide a photo ID to sign out any shipped packages from our secured staging area.
  • The Warehouse Shipping & Receiving is open 5 days a week, Monday – Friday from 8:00am to 4:30pm and can be reached at (828) 497-8709. 
  • The Cherokee Convention Center is not liable for any lost or damaged shipping packages prior to arrival or after departure from the facility.
  • All return shipments must be clearly labeled, and you must reference your shipper account numbers on the package.  You can drop them off at the Warehouse located outside of the Exhibit Hall on the 1st floor of the Cherokee Convention Center or pay the $10 fee to have your items picked-up from the convention space and delivered to the warehouse.  It is best if you bring your own labels with you, as they will already have your account number on them.  If you are going to issue a call tag, please inform the convention sales office prior to calling.

Ready to apply to be an exhibitor?

Booths are limited and spaces are filling fast so if you are interested in exhibiting at the 2021 Outdoor Economy Conference, apply today!