News & Opinions
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The Magic of Exhibitions
Tom Cindric / Hanley Wood Exhibitions / September 13, 2013
I just returned from attending the Asian MICE Forum 2013 in Taipei, Taiwan. No, it is not a place where people run around mazes looking for cheese. Although, there was a discussion about a particular famous mouse that we all know.
MICE stands for meetings, incentives, conferences and exhibitions and the MICE industry in Asia is booming due to globalization. According to the International Congress and Convention Association (ICCA) 2012 statistics, the United States still ranks number one in meetings followed by Germany, Spain and the U.K. with many Asian countries not far behind.
The conference was quite unique and featured three keynotes that really got me thinking about the magic of the exhibitions industry.
David Lightbody, Director of Costuming at Hong Kong Disneyland, spoke about that little mouse we all love and Walt Disney’s vision of creating a magical place where people around the world can step onto a stage and interact with cast members. He talked about how story telling impacts our lives and creating unforgettable memories and experiences. He encouraged us all to become great story tellers.
Sanna Tarssanen, CEO, Lapland Center of Expertise for Experience Industry, spoke about the legend of Santa Clause Village in Lapland, Finland. This village located at the arctic circle in the small town of Rovaniemi, Lapland is now the official home of Santa Claus and a place where people travel from all over the world to experience the magic of Christmas. She encouraged us all to find our northern lights.
James Rees, Executive Director for ExCeL London, spoke about the legacy from the London Olympics. As London’s premiere exhibition facility, ExCeL hosted 13 sports at the 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games. He spoke of the magical transformation not only of his facility but of London and the city’s legacy that has lived on after the games. He encouraged us all to build our own legacy.
And there lies the magic of exhibitions. Every day show managers around the globe are hard at work building stages in exhibition halls, setting up props of exhibitor’s booths, organizing cast members to guide you to registration and shuttle busses, scripting stories for keynotes and events and designing programing for the conference. Their goal is to create an experience and a marketplace like no other.
If you have ever attended a Hanley Wood exhibition, I hope you have had a magical time and truly enjoyed the show. If you have not, you should be our guest.
Have a magical day.