Colorado News Connection

January 25, 2018Available files: mp3 wav jpg

Outdoor Retailer Show Debuts in Denver

Roz Brown

DENVER - The Outdoor Retailer trade show will exhibit its merchandise in Denver this week, after moving to Colorado from Utah.

The trade show declined to sign a new contract with Utah over its perceived lack of commitment to federal- and public-land preservation, saying Colorado better aligns with the outdoor industry's culture. Carlos Fernandez heads The Nature Conservancy in Colorado; he said the intersection between outdoor recreation and conservation makes Colorado a logical choice for the trade show.

"As you know, not only for political reasons but also to make a statement that states like Colorado respect and observe public lands, climate change and water issues," Fernandez said.

The Outdoor Retailer show runs through Sunday at the Colorado Convention Center in downtown Denver. Show organizers hope to attract new outdoor businesses to the state, drawn by Colorado's abundant natural resources.

Colorado was the first state to designate a Public Lands Day. Fernandez said the state's commitment to protecting natural resources has electrified the outdoor industry.

"You know, Colorado is a mecca for the outdoors," he said. "It goes hand in glove that the show is here. And 71 percent of Coloradans participate in outdoor recreation every year."

The Outdoor Retailer trade show, one of three planned in Denver this year, is expected to deliver $110 million in economic impact.