Wildbird Expo :: Mexico, MO

The Wild Bird Expo™ and 4th annual Heart of America Gift Show™

October 3, 4, & 5

Mark your calendars. Save the date because on October 3-5 birding retailers from all across the country will be migrating to Mexico, Missouri for the 2017 Wild Bird Expo™, to be held in conjunction with the 4th annual Heart of America Gift Show™.

"Some 52 million Americans feed the birds and they spend about $5 billion a year on bird seed and feeders," says Mel Toellner, also known as Birdman Mel, owner of the family operated business Gold Crest Distributing sponsoring the Expo. "Whether they are bird-watching hobbyists, environmental enthusiasts or simply want to help the birds, all share a passion for birding. For retailers, this is an attractive customer market offering dedicated, repeat customers committed to buy bird feed and feeding accessories to support their lifestyle passion."

Brenda Wright, coordinating this year's Wild Bird Expo, is pleased to announce that internationally-recognized authority on the affluent consumers Pamela N. Danziger will be the key-note speaker. Drawing on research for her book written for and about specialty retail, Shops that POP! 7 Steps to Extraordinary Retail Success, Pam will present a talk entitled, "Make Your Birding Shop POP! Secrets to Get Customers Flocking to Your Doors."

Commenting on her presentation, Danziger says, "Birders know the key to attracting different birds to their feeders is selecting the right type of seed. So too in retail. To draw the best customers to your store requires that you offer them the right mix of product and experiences. How to attract customers with the right retail 'food' will be what I share."

Several popular features remain part of the schedule including opening night Oktoberfest celebration, Share Night, industry-relevant seminars, the latest new products and services, and much more.

The Wild Bird Expo™ has become known as North America's premier wild bird show and event and boasts the largest gathering of wild bird industry retailers, vendors and experts. Over 120 backyard nature vendors and 1,000+ retailers from 45 states and 3 provinces of Canada attended last year.

Wright states, "We anticipate the attendance record to continue to grow with this year's show as we've already received more sign-ups than this time last year. We urge anyone interested in attending this year's event to reserve their spot early on." Other details and features of this year's show will be released within the next couple months. For more information and to sign up, visit www.wildbirdexpo.com


Tuesday, October 3rd
Shuttles will run all day Tuesday from St. Louis airport to & from hotels & GCD warehouse.
8:00 am Shuttles begin running from St. Louis Airport.
10:00 am Gold Crest permanent sales floor opens for shopping.
10:00 am Garage Sale opens. Gold Crest will be open for warehouse shopping.
12:00 pm Light lunch served at Gold Crest warehouse.
1:00 pm All Vendor Booths will be open on Tuesday from 1:00 to 8:00 pm.
Beverages @ 5:00 pm Oktoberfest begins!!! Beer, Brat, Burgers and Pretzels for all Tuesday arrivals. All vendors and attending
Food @ 6:00 pm Retailers are invited so this will be a great time to share ideas and experiences and simply “have fun” together!! Celebration takes place at Gold Crest warehouse and vendor booths will be open late for shopping!
Wednesday, October 4th
Shuttles will run all day Wednesday from St. Louis airport to & from hotels & GCD warehouse & then to Mexico Country Club in the evening.
6:15 am - 7:00 am
Shuttles - Grab everyone signed up for the Birdwalk and leave Gold Crest promptly at 7:00. Local birder to guide group. (To-Go breakfast plates for birdwatchers.)
7:00 am - 9:00 am Free breakfast served at GCD warehouse. Back by popular demand is the "Pancake Man". Truly a show, not just a meal! Vegetarian meals available upon request.
8:00 am Gold Crest garage sale opens
8:00 am - 5:00 pm Gold Crest Distributing Wild Bird Expo™ opens! Our show features 120+ vendors, all with a savings of at least 5% & up to 20% or MORE including over 2 dozen vendors we don't stock - several new for 2017
8:00 am Shuttles will be available to tour Songbird Station retail concept store in Columbia.
10:30 am - 3:00 pm Seminars featuring fellow retailers discussing issues important to you.
11:00 am - 12:00 pm Keynote Seminar Session (Keynote Seminar given a second time at 3-4)
11:30 am - 1:00 pm Free BBQ Ribeye Steak Sandwich at warehouse (Vegetarian meals available upon request
2:00 pm Shuttles will be available to tour Songbird Station retail concept store in Columbia.
5:00 pm Trade Show closes for the day, includes Garage Sale.
6:00 pm Share night with free homestyle fried & baked chicken dinner & free drinks at Steinman Banquet Hall (Vegetarian meals available upon request). Retailers are asked to bring copies & examples of their best: advertising, displays, promotion, and direct mail piece. Attendees will vote & $50 gift cards will be awarded to the winners. Everyone that brings something to show is guaranteed an electronic copy of a notebook of all entries that will be sent to them upon request after the event. Lots of time for fun & idea sharing with fellow retailer
Thursday, October 5th
Shuttles will run all morning to & from hotels & GCD warehouse.
6:15 am - 7:00 am Shuttles - Grab everyone signed up for the Birdwalk and leave Gold Crest promptly at 7:00. Local birder to guide group. (To-Go breakfast plates for birdwatchers.)
7:00 am - 9:00 am Free breakfast served at GCD warehouse. Includes homemade breakfast casserole, cinnamon rolls, fruit & cereal.
8:00 am Gold Crest garage sale opens
8:00 am - 1:00 pm Gold Crest Distributing SUPER Warehouse Trade Show Opens! Save big money - "Just in time for Christmas!
11:30 am - 1:00 pm Free BBQ pork & chicken lunch with all the xings (Vegetarian meals available upon request). Afternoon / evening shuttles run to St. Louis airport.
1:00 pm Wild Bird Expo™ closes for 2017 - SAFE TRAVELS HOME
1:00 am - 4:00 pm Gold Crest Permanent Show Floor, Warehouse & Garage Sale will remain open for those wanting to continue shopping until 4:00pm.

Nominations Are Being Accepted Now For The 2017 Best Birding Retailer of the Year Awards

Nominations are being accepted for the third annual Best Birding Retailer of the Year Awards which are scheduled to be conferred at this year's Wild Bird Expo™, held in Mexico, Missouri on October 3rd, 4th & 5th.

Nominations may be submitted by birding business industry leaders and fellow birding retailers, in addition to those from the Candidate Search Committee. Other nominators will include birding industry vendors and organizations such as WBFI. Self-nominations are encouraged. Candidates will be submitted to the Award Selection Team for review and selection, based on several criteria including the following:

All nominees must demonstrate conscientious effort in advancing the birding hobby and industry and directly support bird sanctuaries, wildlife refuges, conservation and wetlands projects, bird rescue and rehabilitation efforts, and/or bird-specific educational associations.

Candidates may range from backyard nature, bird stores, garden centers to farm and home stores and / or hardware stores.

Factors evaluated includes: sales volume (total and per / sq. ft.), growth history and advancement of new trends, best practice systems, product selection offered, merchandising, advertising, customer communication and education (websites, social media, etc.), and overall impact within their community and beyond.

Categories include:

  • - Best Large Store with a Birding Emphasis (Over 1,800 Sq. Feet)
  • - Best Small Store with a Birding Emphasis (Less than 1,800 Sq. Feet)
  • - Best Birding Department in a Multi-Line Store
  • - Best Birding Department as a funding source for a Non-Profit Organization

The Wild Bird Expo™ is co-sponsored and hosted by Gold Crest Distributing in Mexico, MO. Grant Toellner, Vice President of Gold Crest Distributing, was quoted to say, "This is the third year that Gold Crest has been privileged to host the Best Birding Retailer Awards. We are honored to take part in helping recognize the leaders of this industry."

For more information about the Best Birding Retailer Awards contact:

Grant Toellner
Vice President
Gold Crest Distributing
PH: 888-985-2473
Email: Grant@goldcrestdistributing.com

Official Nomination Form for 2017 Best Birding Retailer Awards