MOMENTUM BUILDS FOR 2009 ICAS CONVENTION
With just five weeks before the start of the air show industry’s big annual meeting, most of the leading indicators suggest that this year’s convention will be at least as strong as the 2008 event and perhaps even a bit stronger. Hotel sleeping room reservations, exhibit booth reservations and convention program advertising are well ahead of the 2008 pace. Delegate registration numbers are right on pace with 2008.
“We’ve seen it before. The air show industry is resilient,” said ICAS President John Cudahy. “Despite the struggling economy, air show professionals are hard at work planning their 2010 season. And many recognize that the ICAS Convention is a uniquely effective tool for getting that work done.”
PRE-REGISTRATION DISCOUNT STILL AVAILABLE
ICAS will continue to offer a pre-registration discount until midnight on November 17. Offered to help members save a bit on their convention registration fees and avoid long registration lines on-site at the Paris Las Vegas Hotel, the pre-registration discounts provide members with a $25 savings over on-site rates.
Click here to go directly to the on-line ICAS Convention registration page on the ICAS website. Follow the prompts and register before November 17. You will not only save a bit of money; you’ll ensure that your credentials are squared away and ready to pick up as soon as you arrive in Las Vegas.
MAKE YOUR HOTEL ROOM RESERVATION SOON
The 43rd annual convention of the International Council of Air Shows will be held at the Paris Hotel in Las Vegas, Nevada. ICAS has made special arrangements with Paris to extend the offer of hotel sleeping rooms at the low rate of $99 per night -- for the nights of Sunday, December 6 through Wednesday, December 9 -- to ICAS Convention delegates. The original rate of $117 will still apply on the weekend nights of Friday, December 4 and Saturday, December 5.
After Thursday, November 12, the rate will go back to the original $117 for Sunday, Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday.
To reserve your room at the lowest rate, use this special page set up for ICAS members on the Paris Hotel website. You can also make your room reservation over the phone by calling the Paris Las Vegas Hotel directly at 877-603-4386 and referencing Code SPICA9.
ICAS OFFERS DETAILS ON CONVENTION EDUCATION PROGRAMMING
There will be a few additional sessions added between now and the convention, but ICAS has recently released the details on the most extensive education program in its 42-year history. With more than 60 different sessions, the program has been specifically developed to meet the needs of the various air show constituencies who attend the ICAS Convention each year. Event organizers, performers and support service providers. Military and civilian. Veterans and newbies. Operations folks and marketers. We’ve kept the strongest and most popular sessions from past conventions, and we’ve added sessions oriented toward those groups that have not really had much interest in education programming before, including an extensive track of sessions developed just for our more experienced event organizers.
You can find details on this year’s session in the fourth quarter issue of Air Shows Magazine (which will arrive in your mailbox in the next day or two), in the attached pdf file with 20 pages of details on this year’s convention, or by visiting this page on the ICAS website (please be aware that each session name is also a hyper link to a more extensive description of that session).
ICAS will add another three or four break-out education sessions once some of the remaining details on those sessions are firmed up, but – in the meantime – you can count on education programming that includes all of these sessions and a few as-yet-unannounced surprises.
SUNDAY NIGHT FOOTBALL IS THEME FOR WELCOME RECEPTION
At last year’s convention, we threw a party with a Hawaiian theme and then forgot to tell the convention delegates. We’re working hard to avoid that this year.
At this year’s convention, the “fan-wear” of our convention delegates will set the theme for our traditional welcome reception on Sunday, December 6. With the New England Patriots vs. Miami Dolphins game playing on three huge video screens in the reception hall, ICAS members will show their fan affiliation with football jerseys, hats, and other apparel. Professional, collegiate or high school, come dressed to let us know where your football allegiances lie. We’ll have prizes for the best-dressed and most-spirited.
BEWARE: SCHEDULE CHANGES AHEAD
Some of our members have been attending the ICAS Convention for so many years that even a slight change to the traditional schedule can create all sorts of problems. With that in mind, we’re providing members with repeated warnings about some of the changes we have made to this year’s schedule.
* We’ve moved the convention back one day within the week. Generally, events and meetings that were traditionally held on Monday will be held on Sunday this year. Events typically held on Tuesday will be held on Monday. Events usually scheduled for Wednesday will be held on Tuesday. And the last day of this year’s convention will be Wednesday rather than Thursday.
* Because so many ICAS members will arrive early on Sunday, December 6 and because ICAS has received many requests to expand our educational programming, we will hold a number of break-out education sessions on Sunday, December 6, one day earlier than normal. Typically, these break-out sessions would begin the next day.
* On the evening of Monday, December 7, country music recording artist Aaron Tippin will perform a members-only private concert for the ICAS membership. This 90-minute program is offered to convention delegates at no additional cost.
* For the third consecutive year, the popular and heavily attended pilot safety de-brief will be held on the afternoon of Sunday, December 6, the day before the first exhibit hall sessions.
* For the first time ever, ICAS will also host a two-hour and fifteen minute air boss safety de-brief. Organized and conducted as part of the ICAS initiative to change the culture of air show safety, this session will be held on Monday, December 7 and is being offered as an opportunity for air bosses to discuss safety concerns of the previous season.
* For nearly a decade, our Canadian members have carved out a chunk of time during the convention to meet as a group and discuss issues of common concern. This year, that Maple Leaf Forum will be held on the evening of Tuesday, December 8 from 6:15 p.m. to 7:45 p.m.
* Last year for the first time, the booth selection space draw was held in the evening rather than very early in the morning. That change was well-received, so we’ll be repeating it again in 2009. The exhibit space draw will be held from 6:15 to 7:15 p.m. on Tuesday, December 8.
BANQUET PROVIDES OPPORTUNITY TO CELEBRATE, RECOGNIZE INDUSTRY PROFESSIONALS
You’ll hear references to it throughout convention week. “Are you going to the prom?” “Who are you sitting with on Oscar night?” It’s the annual ICAS Chairman’s Banquet and it’s a unique opportunity for the entire air show community to gather in one room to celebrate the successful end of one air show season, commemorate the unofficial beginning of another air show season, and recognize some of the top achievers in our business.
On the evening of Wednesday, December 9, ICAS Convention delegates will put on their fancy dress and gather in the Concorde Ballroom at the Paris Las Vegas Hotel. The ICAS Foundation will recognize the 2009 induction class for the Air Show Hall of Fame: Charlie “The Flying Farmer” Kulp, EAA Chairman and President Tom Poberezny, and the late Bobby Younkin. We’ll also pay tribute to the 2009 recipients of the prestigious Dick Schram Community Relations Award, the Art Scholl Memorial Showmanship Award, and the ICAS Sword of Excellence. We’ll share a few laughs, drink a little wine, have a bite to eat, and have a little more fun before we all head back to our corner of the world to continue our planning for the 2010 air show season.
So, as you finalize your travel plans for this year’s convention, be sure to make time for the Chairman’s Banquet. You’ll be glad you did.
SMALL NUMBER OF BOOTHS STILL AVAILABLE
A small number of booths are still available in the ICAS exhibit hall.
“The hall in our new hotel is a good deal bigger than the Rio and we have about a dozen booths left for ICAS members who decide at the last second to exhibit at this year’s convention,” says ICAS Exhibit Manager Karen Connors.
Indeed, organizations that reserve their booth(s) in the next several days will still have their organization’s name listed on all of the reference materials (signs, convention program, exhibitors-at-a-glance listing) that are distributed to convention delegates during the convention.
To reserve your booth at the 2009 ICAS Convention, contact Karen Connors by phone (703-779-8510) or e-mail (Connors@airshows.aero).
ICAS REITERATES EXHIBIT FLOOR SOLICITATION POLICY
Selling privileges on the ICAS Convention exhibit hall floor are limited to organizations that have contracted and paid for space assignments. No other persons or organizations will be permitted to sell products or services, solicit contributions, distribute advertising materials, or demonstrate products on the exhibit hall floor. Non-exhibiting personnel observed selling on the exhibit hall floor will be asked to stop such activities. If these non-exhibiting personnel refuse to stop, they will be asked to leave the hall.
A note to our other delegates: if you see somebody involved in this practice, please alert an ICAS staff member. If you are approached by a vendor who is attempting to do business with you on the trade show floor without a booth, please let them know that this practice is against convention policy and that you don’t feel comfortable having that conversation on the exhibit hall floor.
This practice is a threat to the integrity of YOUR ICAS Convention. If the practice is not actively discouraged by all ICAS members, it threatens to do serious and lasting damage to this important industry event. It’s not fair to the many, many ICAS members who play by the rules. And it has the potential to drive up costs for all of our convention delegates.
WHAT TO WEAR
A few clothing-related pointers for this week’s events.
* Generally, the dress for the ICAS Convention is business casual.
* Though there is no official policy within the military, with the exception of Flight Suit Day on Tuesday and the Chairman’s Banquet on Wednesday night, it is unusual for military representatives to wear their military uniforms.
* Tuesday is Flight Suit Day. All pilots and performers are encouraged to wear their flight suits.
* The Wednesday night Chairman’s Banquet is a “black tie optional” event. Though some of our convention delegates choose to wear tuxedoes and evening dresses, they are not required and you will not feel out of place if you come in less formal attire.
2009 CONVENTION SPONSORS PROVIDE IMPORTANT BOOST
While you’re roaming the aisles of the exhibit hall at this year’s ICAS Convention, please be sure to offer a special thank you to the organizations who have demonstrated their support of ICAS and their leadership position in the air show community by signing on as sponsors of the 2009 ICAS Convention. Those organizations include: AirShowBuzz and The Horsemen; Air Boss & Consulting, Inc.; Julie Clark’s Chevron Mentor T-34; Stallion 51 and The Gathering Foundation; Eagle Air, LLC - Chuck Vincent; Aerostars Formation Aerobatic Team; Air Boss, Inc.; John Klatt and Air National Guard; Team Chaos Extreme Airshows; Insurance Technologies & Programs; Eddie Andreini Airshows; Greg Poe Air Shows; Commemorative Air Force/Tora Tora Tora; Airshow Aces; AirSupport, LLC; Shannon & Luchs Insurance Agency; Jim Peitz Aerosports; Nalls Aviation; Mach 1 Productions; Jacquie ‘B’ Airshows; Mohr Barnstorming; Team Rocket; Gordon Bowman-Jones; ValleyWide Communications; Rob Reider, Air Show Anouncer; and OnBoard Images.
© International Council of Air Shows, Inc.
750 Miller Drive, Suite F-3
Leesburg, Virginia 20175