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#AVILIVE Chicago Highlights Professional Development, Venue Tours

Audiovisual May 9, 2017

AVI LIVE Chicago saw a bigger turnout than last year, with nearly 250 attendees at Soldier Field in Chicago, Ill. The main reasons: professional development and an entertaining venue, said Blake Podvin, event marketing specialist at AVI Systems.

“I think it went really well, everybody seemed to love the location,” Podvin said.

Running from May 3 to 4, AVI LIVE wasn’t just a trade show this year. It was an experience, filled with interactive AV technology, educational seminars and more.

Among the main highlights of the show were the tours of Soldier Field. Tours included up to 30 people usually, but there were some more private tours for those who came late to the venue. “With this specific location, I thought that was really cool,” she said.

For some, the control room was the best part of the tours. Denny McDougald, sales account executive at AVI Systems, helped explain the ins and outs of the room during the tours, since AVI Systems was contracted for the project.

The behind-the-scenes look at the control room was a way to bring a more concrete example to AVI LIVE. “It’s pro AVI, but it’s also pro all of our individual manufacturers,” Podvin said, explaining that the control room showcases technology and equipment from numerous companies.

“I think a big aspect that’s helped has been professional development ... I don’t know any other trade shows that are doing that.”

Aside from building tours, though, the professional development seminars played a large role in attracting AV professionals. Podvin often split her time running from floor to floor, ensuring the event ran smoothly. But, passing by the health-care seminars, she couldn’t help but notice how full they were.

“I think a big aspect that’s helped has been professional development,” Podvin said. “I don’t know any other trade shows that are doing that.”

In the future, AVI Systems hopes to add more professional development seminars to AVI LIVE and other events, including classes that attendees can get credit for.

“Education, after all, is central to technology leadership,” said CEO Jeff Stoebner in a statement. “Educational opportunities are a magnet for talent in our industry. And continuous professional development is the surest way to achieve operational excellence.”

One of the main goals for the event is to have attendees walk away with experiences that will benefit them in their careers, Podvin said. To help create this opportunity, AVI Systems is emailing a survey to attendees looking for insight into the value of the event.


Craig Frankenstein talking digital media, live streaming and multi casting.

Posted by AVI Systems, Inc. on Thursday, May 4, 2017


“When I first started, it was trade show all day,” Podvin said. This year, it was different. There were multiple educational seminars and keynote addresses added to engage with attendees in another way. “I think it’s important for us to keep growing.”

AVI LIVE comes to Minneapolis May 23 and 24, followed by the grand opening of AVI Systems’ newly renovated headquarters on May 25.

The show is at Target Field, downtown Minneapolis, featuring numerous breakout sessions and ways to learn about trends in the industry. More information about AVI LIVE can be found here: AVI LIVE - Minneapolis“We’re going to have some cool raffle items, including signed Twins memorabilia,” Podvin said, adding that tours of Target Field are also planned.

“No vendor will have a bad spot,” she said. “It will be fun.”


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