A couple of years ago, I attended the Open Air Demo for Winter Market and was so disappointed. No ski boots my size, disorganized service by the participating brands, just not an appealing memory. This year, with UintasHike16 ending on Monday, it seemed an opportune chance to check out the Summer version.
Im glad I went. Much of the morning was spent hanging out with Jeff (Missouri Howell), Paulina (Little Grunts), and Tanya (Tanya Sylvan – All In Stride). We started by wandering the booths set up in the parking lot, picking up occasional samples, and trying out some land-based demos. Paulina and Jeff tried the Swurfer (a type of skateboard swing), while I finally got on a One-Wheel. If it weren’t for the price, there’s no question I’d get one. Truly a blast.
Heading down to the water, the benefit of Summer over Winter became readily apparent. Sizing is pretty much immaterial when you’re paddling a canoe, a SUP, or yes, lying in a hammock while cruising the water.
After fun on the water, the only truly negative aspect of the day occurred. Even though Outdoor Retailer has been holding these Demo Days for years, they have a long way to go with the Shuttle Service. Hundreds of people waited in the hot sun, milling around as shuttles came and went to the parking lot and the Park City Marriott. It was extremely frustrating as we had been told not to drive and park and these shuttles came and went practically empty.
We finally got on a shuttle and headed back to SLC for the Media Preview and the Colorado Reception, both fun events.
Excepting the shuttle snafu, the Open Air Demo turned out to be a great way to spend the morning. Adding the fun we had in the evening, definitely a worthwhile day.