The first ever Run Show USA debuted in Chicago at the Donaldson E Stephens Convention Center June 4-5, 2022, attracting thousands of the running community who visited to get the latest gear, races, coaching advice, tech and nutrition ready for the coming marathon season. The weekend expo welcomed runners of all ability from Illinois and neighbouring states to see an all-star and inspirational line up of speakers.
Day 1, Olympian Carl Lewis officially opened the expo and ultra-trail runner hero Dean Karnazes and Barkley Marathon legend Gary Robbins cutting the ribbon and opening the show on Day 2 in style. As the doors opened, the Inspiration Stage and Running Skills Theatre were swamped with visitors looking to hear from running heroes Carl Lewis and Coach Scott Simmons. More than 30 speakers took to the stages and shared inspirational journeys, coaching advice, running skills and left a feeling of ‘get up and run’ in the running community. As well as Sally McRae, The Mirnavator (Mirna Valerio), Jacky Hunt-Boersma, Aaron Perry, Fitz Koehler and many more, the event closed with four time Olympian Galen Rupp inspiring the crowds with his lifelong career in long distance running.
Visitors flocked through the aisles to see the brands showcasing their latest product developments including interactive displays of tech, exclusive show discounts and new lines. The event provided a first-class retail experience with recommended retail partner Fleet Feet who brought key brands to the show such as Coros, Garmin, Asics, Xero Shoes, Altra and HOKA ONE ONE.
Speaking of the event, Carrie Tollefson, Former American Olympian commented: “The Run Show is a wonderful event to help give us a nudge or give us that kick in the pants to get after life. This event offers everything one needs to enjoy running and every opportunity to meet you where you need to be met in your running journey! The Run Show covered everything from expert advice, speakers, products, and race information. SO MUCH FUN!”
Visitors spent their time from 10am until 5pm making the most of the interactive features at the event in between visiting exhibitors. Features included the Inspiration Stage, the Running Skills Theatre, an Events Village brought to the hall by Race Raves, 3D Foot Scanning by Volumental, Recycling Running shoe Stations sponsored by Jog On and a Run Café sponsored by Runderwear. There was also a live interactive DEKA Fitness Zone where visitors got involved and completed the intense work outs, plus, Coaches Corner sponsored by Team Run Run and Sports Movement Screening Clinic where visitors were given 15-minute consultations, massage, and cupping treatments, and stretching techniques during the show.
Ultra- trail runner Gary Robbins recreated his Barkley Marathon attempt around the show, collecting pages of Trail Runner Magazine from selected booths within a 6mins and 6seconds time limit. Bear in Mind brought a mascot and Fleet Feet created a booming atmosphere with music and a full retail team to deliver a first-class retail experience.
Tony Reed, CEO, Caribbean Endurance Sports Corporation also commented “The event was very well organized, and it was clear that the runners really enjoyed themselves. Visitors appeared to spend more time conversing with the vendors rather than just passing through the exhibits, which meant the vendors were better able to educate the attendees about their products and services. I can’t wait for the Run Shows in LA and Boston!”
Nathalie Davies, Portfolio Event Director at The Run Show USA commented: “We’re so pleased we have managed to bring the Northern American Running Community together in Chicago for the first time. With such a fantastic line up of brands and speakers, we knew the show would wow the visitors and we’ve seen runners from all walks of life arrive and stay for the whole two days at this event. This show is a launch platform for many more events we have planned, including LA in September and Boston early next year.”