Thank you to our amazing STAO2016 Exhibitors from the volunteer Exhibits Committee

Thank you to our amazing STAO2016 Exhibitors!!!!

On Thursday and Friday of the STAO conference, there were 75 exhibitors in both the main Exhibit Hall and in the outer hall beside the STAOStore. On Saturday, there were 25 exhibitors with resources directly related to the Saturday program.

We thank both the exhibitors for their time, good spirits, professionalism, and their prize draws. We thank the delegates who engaged our exhibitors at their booths.

Click here for a list of all the exhibitors and their websites,

Some background information about the STAO2016 Exhibit Hall.

Some of you who have attended a previous STAO conference noticed that we moved the Exhibit Hall from the Plaza Rooms upstairs at the south end of the hotel, to the centralized area off the west entrance. We did this for a couple of reasons. By being in a centralized location, close to the STAOStore, the Playground (new this year and a great success), and the STAO Committee booths, we were in the ‘thick of things’ as attendees moved between locations in the hotel. A ‘behind the scenes’ benefit was that the new location gave the exhibitors and the volunteer support staff easier access to the loading dock. Set-up and tear-down was so much easier for all of us.

The original plan was to have only a two-day Exhibit Hall. When plans moved forward for a robust Saturday program with a strong certificate program and an emphasis on the elementary panel, we invited those exhibitors who had already committed to the two-day program (and who could offer resources relevant to the Saturday program) to stay with us for the three days. Twenty-one exhibitors agreed to this and four ‘new’ Saturday-only exhibitors joined us. In a desire to offer as many workshops as possible on the Saturday, we did not have an ‘Exhibit Hall only’ time as there was on Thursday and Friday. Thus, the smaller, contained exhibit area devoted to the Saturday programming meant that attendees could visit all exhibitors efficiently.

As with any change, there were hiccups. We (the Exhibits Committee) were so familiar with the larger Exhibit Hall, that we did not realize that some delegates would not know that there over 60 exhibitors in that area. By Friday, we had overcome that hiccup and were directing delegates into that main exhibit area. For the Saturgerriday exhibitor program, we should have provided more information to the delegates about which exhibitors would be there and why, so that they knew that there was a rich exhibitor program on Saturday.

Overwhelmingly the new location was a success. We thank everyone for their patience and we have promised ourselves that next year will be even better!

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