The calendar reads "November," but planning for the 70th PGA Show in January in Orlando, Florida, is well underway.
The PGA Show, formerly known as the PGA Merchandise Show, will be the first “normal” gathering of PGA of America members and golf industry executives since 2020, just weeks before COVID-19 hit America. As such, the PGA of America and partner Reed Exhibitions believe pent-up demand could drive the number of PGA professionals and industry insiders toward the record 40,000-plus turnout of the early 2000s to see the latest offerings from golf’s equipment and apparel marketers.
Leading equipment makers are scheduled to return to the PGA Show on Jan. 24-27, including Callaway Golf, Titleist, Ping, Cobra, Mizuno, Bridgestone and Srixon. On the soft-goods side, Peter Millar will be back, as will FootJoy, Kjus, Under Armour, Ahead and Dunning, among others.
What will be different from 2020?
In addition to the name change, the PGA Show has gotten a brand overhaul. A new logo and branding will dot floor signage, pavilions, entrances and the registration area at the Orange County Convention Center.
There also will be a new PGA Professional Hub, where PGA members can get information about member programs and PGA partner benefits. A considerable amount of space will be dedicated to showcasing member resources at the new headquarters campus in Frisco, Texas. The PGA Show’s main stage also has been moved to the centrally located hub.
An industry-collaborative career program will be introduced focusing on talent acquisition, retention and career counseling. There also will be a relocated and enhanced short-game testing area, a new central location for the New Product Zone, and an enhanced fashion show lounge and stage. Additional programming has been added to address the growth of golf fitness. PGA members can expect to see new vendors to source broader golf club amenities, such as the rapidly growing game of pickleball.
“Additional education, business, career and peer networking programs in a packed Show Week schedule help to elevate the business of the sport at every level.”
Marc Simon, vice president of PGA Golf Exhibitions
The PGA of America has become more involved in the programming of educational offerings. These offerings will take place in early and later hours of the day to allow for more time on the main show floor. The content will focus on the three main educational pillars: teaching and coaching; executive management; and operations.
Lastly, the highly popular and well-attended Demo Day is now called Demo & Fitting Day, featuring a new emphasis on club fitting and education. It will take place Tuesday, Jan. 24, at its customary Orange County National Golf Center location in nearby Winter Garden.
“We are excited to welcome back to the PGA Show the very best brands in golf, from market leaders and established companies to wide-ranging service providers and inventive startups,” said Marc Simon, the vice president of PGA Golf Exhibitions. “This expansive mix of companies creates an unparalleled marketplace of the newest innovations. Additional education, business, career and peer networking programs in a packed Show Week schedule help to elevate the business of the sport at every level.”
The 2023 PGA Show Week will begin with the PGA Teaching & Coaching Summit (Jan. 22-23), the AGM Retail Conference (Jan. 24) and the PGA Show Education Conference (Jan. 24-27) at the Orange County Convention Center and the National Golf Course Owners Association’s Golf Business Conference (Jan. 23-25) at the nearby Rosen Centre Hotel and the convention center.
Staff and wire reports