The Big Gear Show​, a demo and buying experience built for outdoor, bike, paddling and climbing buyers and makers, announces a new location, invitation-only format, and growth-driving resources for 2021. The show will feature a curated group of 500 hand-selected retailers and 250 brands across the outdoor and cycling industries. It is already quickly filling up, with only 120 retailer invitations remaining.

The Big Gear Show’s inaugural gathering was announced in 2019 and was scheduled to stage in late July 2020 at the Salt Palace Convention Center in Salt Lake City, Utah. Despite the fact that the much-anticipated inaugural event was cancelled due to the pandemic, the team behind The Big Gear Show today announced a new date, location, and focus for 2021.

The Big Gear Show will take place next August 3-5, 2021, in Park City at Deer Valley Resort. The entire show will be outdoors, with the demo component fully integrated into the experience and with social distancing managed on the water, trails, roads, and chairlifts. All manufacturers will exhibit in adjacent segment zones so buyers can see, try and buy with efficiency. Additionally, the ​Grassroots Outdoor Alliance​ and the ​National Bicycle Dealers Association​ have both officially endorsed the show.

“Grassroots fully supports The Big Gear Show as our official paddlesports buying show,” said Rich Hill, President of the Grassroots Outdoor Alliance. “The unique demo-centric format of the show allows our members to see, feel, and test gear in a way that allows them to be strategic in times of unprecedented demand and challenges that our retailers face.”

“The NBDA and our 600 members proudly endorse The Big Gear Show, the only national show for the outdoor industry,” said Kent Crawford, Board Chair of the National Bicycle Dealers Association. “The Big Gear Show team clearly sees the importance of specialty retailers by providing us with an exciting experiential buying and educational event. This B2B format is long overdue and we now feel we have the perfect partner going forward.”

Moving the show to August avoids any conflicts with retailers being out of their shop during peak busy season in July. There also will be no consumers attending in-person in 2021, as keeping the show limited strictly to invited buyers, sellers, and media will ensure the safety of all attendees. Finally, the cost structure remains affordable for exhibitors and invited retailers will receive travel reimbursements based on the amount of time they spend at the show.

“While there’s a lot of ‘new’ to the 2021 edition of the Big Gear Show, one thing remains the same, our commitment to serve and resource the ​hardgoods ​community, which we believe is a key driver in the innovation of outdoor equipment,” said show founder, Sutton Bacon. “Gear is central to the leading role outdoor recreation is taking in the pandemic and recession recovery.”

Additionally, new gear-focused resources and education tracks will be available to those exhibiting and attending leading up to the show, with the intention of supporting the modernization and expansion of the outdoor and cycling specialty retail business.

“We understand that the future success of the specialty outdoor and bike business hinges on generating ongoing discovery and unique experiences for our target enthusiast consumers. Gear makers and purveyors are the joint architects of this experience,” Bacon said.

Space is quickly filling for retailers at the invitation-only event. There is a limited quantity of space still available for gear shops, specialty makers, and invite-only media from the outdoor, bike, and paddle spheres. The media in attendance will be an important component to The Big Gear Show, with unique opportunities for brands that will be announced at a later date.

To learn more and to apply for an invitation, visit ​​. Invitations for brands will be sent out in November.

The Big Gear Show co-founders Sutton Bacon and Darren Bush. Photo:


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