Top Public Events

Top Public Events Award Program


Top Public Event Programtoppubevent
(for existing events and new launches)

Each year thousands of business-to-consumer events take place in the United States and each year the International Association of Exhibitions and Events (IAEE) selects an expert panel of exhibition organizers, exhibitors, suppliers, and marketers who carefully evaluate hundreds of public shows across all industries, hobbies, interests and crafts. From those that apply for recognition only the best are selected as among the Top Public Events. A broad criteria of best practices are evaluated such as customer service initiatives, employee training and motivation, innovations in marketing and exhibitor support to name a few.

Events that are selected are entitled to use distinctive Top Event advertising and promotional collateral that clearly identifies them as among the best events in the nation for the next year. All copyrighted IAEE Top Public Events collateral is licensed for the winner’s use (based upon the terms of use) for one year from the date of the annual award.

Why You Should Apply:

  1. IAEE will use all of its publications and electronic media to feature the annual list of Top Public Events.
  2. Winners will receive a comprehensive package of licensed collateral that may be used for one year at no cost.
  3. Each event will be recognized at key IAEE events such as Expo! Expo! and the Midyear Meeting.
  4. IAEE will issue ongoing media information to major news organizations about the award recipients.
  5. All award winners will be invited to attend the annual awards luncheon at Expo! Expo! to be recognized and to receive their awards.
  6. Winning recognition as one of IAEE’s Top Public Events brings you substantial competitive advantage.


New Launch Events Established Events
Application Application
Entry Form Entry Form

Terri Phillips
Executive Director, IAEE Public Events Council
12700 Park Central Dr, #308
Dallas, TX 75010


Top Public Events 2012

Please join IAEE in recognizing these public events as IAEE 2012 TOP PUBLIC EVENTS!


EARTH DAY DALLAS 2012earth day dallas logo 2012 (2)
21-22 April 2012; Dallas, Texas
Earth Day Dallas, Inc., Producer

Earth Day Dallas 2012 is recognized as an IAEE 2012 Top Public Event – New Launch for exceptional customer service, creative marketing and for recycling as a best practice initiative. Earth Day Dallas recognized the struggles exhibitors and attendees encounter during times of economic struggle and has used several strategies to attract exhibitors and attendees to the event. Social media participation has grown substantially since the 2011 launch of this event and, as a matter of fact, all media has shown significant growth. The special events and messages portrayed throughout this unique event and the attention to detail in marketing, customer service and planning positively distinguishes this event from others.


July 8-10, 2011, Chicago, Illinois; August 26-28, 2011, Houston, Texas; November 18-20-2011, San Jose, California; February 17-19, 2012, Atlanta, Georgia; March 30-April 1, 2012, Los Angeles, California; May 4-6, 2012, New York Metro, Edison, New Jersey
5NET4 Productions, Producer

Abilities Expo is recognized as an IAEE 2012 Top Public Event earning high marks from the judges for its understanding and support of the community served. Show management has taken great pride in establishing a local presence representing the community for people with disabilities. The representative(s) at each event location have a disability, are advocates for the community, and are respected in the community through their relationships with rehabilitation centers, veteran communities and local hospitals. This local support proved invaluable in engaging with the identified audience.  Abilities Expo also stepped up their marketing plan through added social media efforts to better connect with potential exhibitors and attendees. The testimonials are evidence that this event has a purpose and is truly making a difference in the lives of its participants. 

January 12-16, 2012; Chicago, Illinois
National Marine Manufacturers Association, Producer

The Progressive Insurance Chicago Boat, Sports & RV Show is all about a great customer experience.  The recreational boating industry was particularly hard hit during the recession and the National Marine Manufacturers Association knew a whole new approach was necessary to reengage with both exhibitors and attendees.  Communication with attendees led to the conclusion that they want more boats, bigger boats and new features and education to enhance the overall experience.  Exhibitors want to see more qualified buyers. Show management developed innovative space management and a sliding rate structure with special rates for community groups and nonprofit associations, resulting in the increase of bulk exhibitors and new brands, allowing them to exceed their sales goals and reenergize the show floor.  The judges commend NMMA, as an industry owned and operated association, for the development of sound business practices for its events that serve the industry well.

Progressive_NewEnglandBoatShow_4c (2)February 16-24, 2012; Boston, Massachusetts
National Marine Manufacturers Association, Producer

The Progressive Insurance New England Boat Show distinguished itself by providing thoughtful and innovative programming for its attendees. Sixty extensive boating seminars and a new do-it-yourself feature called “Fred’s Shed” were available to beginners and advances boaters alike. In 2012, the New England Boat Show featured a new Welcome to the Water Center which comprised of a static display of thirty boats that fit the “affordability” criteria. Attendees were able to peruse the offerings without a salesperson present. Information on the make, model, power option, purchase price and monthly payment with terms and insurance cost were posted for every boat. This feature proved very effective in educating the consumer on the affordability of boating. 

January 4-8, 2012; New York City, New York
National Marine Manufacturers Association, Producer

The Progressive Insurance New York Boat Show uses the five “E’s” —Exhibits, Education, Entertainment, Environment and Experience to set the overall event experience for their exhibitors and attendees.  The New York Boat Show management believes that building strong, long-lasting relationships with current and prospective exhibitors is key to ensuring the longevity of the show. Offering a dynamic pricing structure for space rates as the industry rebuilds from the recession has ensured the best ROI possible for exhibitors. Testimonials support the success achieved for this event in 2012. The judges appreciate that the National Marine Manufacturers Association recognizes that the format of the show must continuously evolve to ensure longevity and stability and the New York Boat Show is a stellar example of a successful and stable show.

Progressive_StLouisBoatShow_4c (2)February 8-12, 2012; St. Louis, Missouri
National Marine Manufacturers Association, Producer

The Progressive Insurance St. Louis Boat & Sportshow and show producer, the National Marine Manufacturers Association, believes in offering unique customer service by providing both the resources and the tools to grow not only the business of the exhibitor but the industry as a whole. This includes the free Boat Show Exhibitor magazine which is dedicated to maximizing the marketing efforts of the exhibitor. Exhibitors also have access to unparalleled research and data and NMMA’s government relations and industry advocacy. Attendees are engaged through high quality features and education offerings; many of them interactive.  They also partnered with FishingKids to encourage a healthy outdoor lifestyle for children. The judges commend the St. Louis Boat & Sportshow for providing an excellent customer experience for exhibitors as well as attendees.

Click here to view the 2011 Top Public Events Winners.