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RETAIL : TV, Economy Credited for Attendance Rise at Action Sports Show

September 07, 1994|Greg Johnson Times staff writer

Action Sports Retailer held its trade exposition last week at San Diego's convention center, and show officials described the 14th annual gathering as a success. More than 7,200 exhibitors preregistered for space at the show, up from 6,000 last year.

The show included 200 manufacturers who were first-time exhibitors or who had returned to the show after a hiatus. "We're seeing a definite resurgence in the marketplace," said David Loechner, the director of the trade exhibition.

He pegged the show's strength to an improved economy and more sports television programming that features surfing, beach volleyball, skateboarding, in-line skating and snowboarding. The Action Sports Retailer show is endorsed by the Surf Industry Manufacturers Assn.

The sports clothing exposition included more than 50 manufacturers exhibiting snowboarding clothing, boards and accessories for the fast-growing sport. The Ski Industries America trade association believes that U.S. consumers spent more than $102 million on boards, apparel and accessories during 1993.

Cold As Ice, a Costa Mesa-based company, presented a "girls-only" line of snowboarding apparel and accessories. Cold As Ice founder Darcy Lee, an active snowboarder, previously designed clothing for companies including Gotcha, Sims and Santa Cruz.

Lee said she started her own line of women's clothing because "I got tired of wearing guys' stuff. I saw the potential for girls getting into the sport. We're focusing on ages 15 to 25."

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