It’s been said a bad day in Nashville is better than anywhere else. Soon you’ll have the opportunity to find out as Fastener Fair USA is headed to Music City, Tennessee, from May 16th to 17th.
“It’s our exhibitors who’ve suggested Nashville as a location to us for this event, so we’re listening, and we’re ready,” shares Bob Chiricosta, event director with RX Global, an international B2B trade exhibition organizer. “This year, Fastener Fair will be held at the Music City Center, the convention center downtown, just a block away from Broadway. It’s going to be an enjoyable show!”
Fastener Fair has been one of North America’s fastest-growing trade shows and conference events for the fastener industry. It’s currently the only local exhibition dedicated to the entire supply chain, which includes mechanical and design engineers, purchasers, wholesalers, distributors, and OEMs.
This year represents a couple of firsts for this American-based event: a new location and its largest show — ever.
“It’s exciting! The show is shaping up to be the biggest one held in the U.S. to date,” he says. “This includes some of the largest booths we’ve ever offered, with more domestic and international companies exhibiting than ever before.”
Chiricosta expects well over 200 exhibitors, alongside a curated show floor with leading technical and strategic education sessions, and plenty of networking opportunities.
“It’s going to be a full schedule. For those interested in attending early, it’ll be worth your while,” he adds. “There’s a fastener training opportunity, a golf tournament, followed by a pre-show get-together at a place called, Tequila Cowboy.”
Fastener Fair has always been about supporting organizations to “learn, discover, and connect.”
This will begin on Monday, May 15th, as the Fastener Training Institute presents Fastening 101, a one-day course covering fastener engineering basics, including product and design fundamentals. Attendees will learn about different market segments where threaded fasteners are used and their cost differences. The class also delves into fastener engineering, with information on torque, stress, tightening strategies, bolt strength, tension control, and several other elements.
For those interested in testing their swing, the Mid-West Fastener Association — one of the oldest fastener associations in the U.S. — in cooperation with the North Coast Fastener Association, will also host a golf tournament before the show.
Then, after the first day of the Fastener Fair on May 16th, get ready for its annual networking party — at the Country Music Hall of Fame. It’s home to the Hall of Fame Rotunda and world-class exhibitions.
“You won’t want to miss this party,” says Chiricosta. “Expect food, an open bar, plenty of networking opportunities, plus live music. In fact, singer and songwriter Tommy O’Keeffe will play live for us.”
Attendees might recognize him as Tim O’Keeffe’s son. Tim is the CEO of Huyett, an ISO 9001-certified manufacturer, master distributor, and importer of non-threaded fasteners.
“It’s interesting because we’ve learned that 45% of Fastener Fair USA attendees only go to our event. They don’t attend other shows, so it’s extremely important for us to prepare an event that’s educational, interactive, and fun. It’s not every day that everyone gets to travel or make in-person connections outside of the office.”
This year, Fastener Fair USA is partnering with the Fastener Industry Coalition (FIC) to promote and participate in the event. The FIC is made up of regional and national fastener associations supporting the industry.
This year, the Fastener Fair is partnering with the Fastener Industry Coalition (FIC), which includes 13 key fastener associations, to promote and participate in the Nashville show. FIC is an unincorporated association made up of regional and national fastener associations concerned with the distribution, manufacture, and importation of fasteners.
“They’ll be presenting some of the talks and panel discussions that will take place,” he says. “We plan to have educational content focused on technology, supply chains, and sales. We also want to offer insight to those new to the industry, including young professionals. We’ll be announcing the conference line-up shortly.”
According to Chiricosta, Fastener Fair USA also brings in 36% of new first-year attendees to the show each year. And so far, they’ve already received a large and favorable response to this year’s event.
“The companies and exhibitors we’ve talked to so far cannot wait for the show this year,” he says. “They want to be involved and connect with more people. Nashville is great for this because there’s so much nearby manufacturing in the Kentucky and Tennessee areas. There are international auto plants, as well as manufacturing facilities for appliances, furniture, and other components toward the coast.”
You can check out the exhibitor list here.
“Aside from being a fun location in the center of honky tonk bars and non-stop music, Nashville is a place of opportunities,” adds Chiricosta. “We expect this year’s Fair will be a not-to-be-missed event.”
As for next year, Fastener Fair USA will be returning to Cleveland, OH.
“Ohio is somewhat of a hub for the fastener world in the United States,” he says. “Sometimes I’m surprised how many international companies have a branch in the state. So, we’ll probably always return to Cleveland for certain years. But we’re hoping to add Nashville to the rotation, and we’re really looking forward to seeing those in the fastener industry there soon!”
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