The Rand Show … still Joburg’s biggest day out

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March was a jam-packed month at the Expo Centre, with exhibitions and shows of various descriptions decking the walls and covering the grounds.
nding off the month with a bang was the darling of consumer events, the Rand Show, which again proved why it is a momentous occasion on the South African show calendar.

When you think about the Rand Show, you immediately picture the grounds of the Johannesburg Expo Centre (JEC), teaming with exhibitors, stands, excited children and interesting displays.

“Ask any South African family and they can probably recall a few of their favourite memories of this incredible event,” said JEC chief executive officer Craig Newman. “The Rand Show is a truly iconic South African brand that has been part of the fabric of the lives of four generations of South Africans, making precious family memories for more than 120 years.”

For 30 of those years, the Rand Show has called Nasrec home, becoming the family-oriented, lifestyle-rich show that we all know and love today.

“The Rand Show is Nasrec and Nasrec is the Rand Show,” said Mr Newman. “The two have become synonymous with each other, which is what we aim to achieve with all the shows that come to our halls.”

Since its transformation from a premier agricultural show as it began in 1894, the Rand Show has been building on its history to ensure that it remains a “must-do” for every family, fulfilling its promise of being a great day out.

This year, the Rand Show vowed to be Joburg’s biggest day out, welcoming exhibitors of every description from 25 March to 3 April.

“We provided 10 full days of entertainment, exhibitions and demonstrations, as well as many free activities for every taste,” said Mr Newman.

“The key to the success of this event is that it delivers the same level of fun every year, with just enough of the ‘new’ to keep you coming back!”

The Rand Show provided visitors with 10 action-packed days, fuelled with shopping and entertainment, including the exclusive Man Cave, an International Market, Animal Kingdom, a Science and Technological Lab, as well as gardens for visitors with green thumbs.

The Man Cave was the “new kid on the block” this year, presenting a haven for the bored husband, boyfriend or male teenager. Displays included 4×4 equipment, billiard tables, boats and boating accessories, cycling, gadgets, gaming, home cinema and sports equipment, as well as whiskey tastings for the aspiring connoisseurs.

“The debut was highly successful,” said Mr Newman.

“In fact, we’re convinced that this is where the majority of our male population ended up!”

Earlier in March, Propak Africa welcomed service providers and suppliers to the largest packaging, food processing, plastics, printing and labelling business-to-business exhibition on the African continent.

“A world-class and highly successful show in its own right, Propak Africa is the must-attend event for anyone involved in the food and beverage processing industries, packaging, pharmaceutical and cosmetics manufacturing, retail and wholesale, plastics manufacturing, printing and labelling,” said Gary Corin, managing director of Specialised Exhibitions.

“It’s a wonderful platform where buyers are able to source and view the latest in innovative technologies, machinery, equipment, products, consumables, systems, services and solutions and the JEC was the perfect venue for it.”

From 15-18 March, Propak featured more than 450 exhibitors from 15 countries, offering visitors the chance to network and view cutting-edge technology and products. “Those who attended had the opportunity to spend four full days sourcing the best deals, learning at five industry conferences and being exposed to the latest in food processing, manufacturing, and labelling,” Mr Newman said.

On Saturday, 19 March, the Expo Centre had the pleasure of hosting funfair-themed Major League Gardens, a spring social festival and outdoor event. Guests were invited to experience the ultimate in outdoor entertainment, with live artists, outdoor activities, a beer garden and more.

Performances included that of Major League, Cassper Nyovest, Riky Rick, Zola 7, and Aewon Wolf.

“The show was a great success,” Mr Newman said. “This was our first time hosting it and we were pleased that it was well received. The Expo Centre provides ample stage and outdoor space for an event of this nature.”

With March and the Rand Show in the bag, what’s next for the team at the Expo Centre? “More of the same,” laughed Mr Newman. “The wonderful thing about this industry is that it just keeps moving so we are already well into preparations for April and May. We’re gearing up for the next line-up of world-class shows to ensure South Africa stays entertained,” he concluded.