For its first edition following the pandemic, IWA OutdoorClassics, the World’s Leading Trade Fair for Hunting, Shooting Sports, Outdoor Activities and Security, will undergo a mini-revolution: With the simultaneous introduction of three new special exhibition areas and a new community format, the content of the event will be given a significant quality boost. At the same time, new meeting rooms are being created for visitors, exhibitors and media contacts. IWA OutdoorClassics is thus keeping its finger on the pulse and bolstering the appeal of the trade fair experience for everyone involved. An initial insight into the new elements at IWA OutdoorClassics 2023 makes it all the more exciting. The event starts on 2 March 2023 at the Exhibition Centre Nuremberg: Tickets are already available online, on presentation of valid proof of identity.
Focus on policy: The IWA Stage programme
Aggravation, prohibition, mistrust. The policy situation regarding legal weapon ownership in Germany is escalating further in the lead-up to IWA OutdoorClassics. At an EU level, too, policy developments remain tense: A possible ban on lead and potential revisions to the import, export and transit of firearms and ammunition based on the submitted Regulation (EU) 258/2012 (the “EU Firearms Regulation”) continue to provide international institutions and associations with grounds for discussion. The topicality of these themes is also clearly reflected in the programme of lectures for this year’s IWA Stage. With input from the Verband Deutscher Büchsenmacher und Waffenfachhändler (VDB – the Association of German Gunsmiths and Gun Traders) and the Verband der Hersteller von Jagd-, Sportwaffen und Munition (JSM – the German Firearms and Ammunition Manufacturers Association), both honorary sponsors of IWA OutdoorClassics, a top-quality programme of lectures has been put together to prepare both the retail trade and manufacturers for the forthcoming changes and the risks these will entail. The insight into the European market will be especially fascinating. For the first time, the Institut Européen des Armes de Chasse et de Sport (IEACS), the Association of European Manufacturers of Sporting Ammunition (AFEMS) and the World Forum on Shooting Activities (WFSA) will also take advantage of the opportunity offered by the IWA Stage. The first presentations and speakers are already listed online at www.iwa.info/en/events. The IWA Stage will be opened this year in a small ceremony to which exhibitors, visitors and media contacts are all invited. The opening ceremony will begin at 11:15 on Thursday 2 March. In addition to Thomas Preutenborbeck, Member of the Executive Board of NürnbergMesse, speakers will include Jürgen Triebel (President of VDB) and Olaf Sauer (President of JSM). The President of the World Forum, Graham Downing, will also give a statement to the public.
An optical highlight in the truest sense
Products must be tested and made available to experience under real conditions. The OPTICS Testing Area in Hall 3A will be the first appearance at IWA OutdoorClassics 2023 of a new special exhibition format that will take testing of night and thermal imaging technology at the fair to a new level. At the heart of the new special area is a dark room equipped with dimmable light and a range of target objects. That enables various conditions from dusk to total darkness to be simulated, allowing the night-vision device technology to be put through its paces. Another highlight is a heated target on the roof of the dark room to facilitate testing of thermal imaging devices. This target can also be seen from a distance and can thus be observed from throughout the hall. A get-together area and a stage with a state-of-the-art design round out the new OPTICS Testing Area.
A welcome comeback: the AIRSOFT Shooting Range returns
Launched in 2019, the AIRSOFT Shooting Range will mark the return of a further highlight to the supporting programme of IWA OutdoorClassics 2023. On the range, too, the focus is on product testing. A total of six shooting stands give visitors the opportunity to test weapons from various suppliers and thus get a feel for how they handle. The AIRSOFT Shooting Range is our way of giving participants the opportunity to be impressed by the quality of the products in practical application, says Pia Freitag, team manager at IWA OutdoorClassics. The Shooting Range will be located in Hall 5, and will embody the new home for the Airsoft segment.
Newcomer Area, New Product Centre, etc.
Various established special exhibition areas will round out the rich and varied supporting programme at IWA OutdoorClassics 2023. The New Product Centre in Hall 4 will once again form the centre for innovations and new product developments this year. That is where visitors will find all the latest developments bundled in a single location. Young companies from Germany and around the world will again be at home at the Young Innovative Companies pavilion and in the popular Newcomer Area in the walkway to Hall 3C. The Job Centre is still a feature of IWA OutdoorClassics, and will be located in Hall 7 in future. As usual, visitors will find the Clothing Corner in Hall 4.
An event for the entire community!
An invitation from IWA OutdoorClassics: A large-scale happy hour will be held on the first evening of the fair, the first in its almost 50-year history. Visitors are cordially invited, together with exhibitors and media contacts. A special beer with a unique IWA “look” will be served as everyone celebrates the start of the event together. The crew of the popular YouTube channel “Polenar Tactical” will attend as special guests, and will have a special surprise for visitors. Thomas Preutenborbeck, Member of the Executive Board of NürnbergMesse and of the event management of IWA OutdoorClassics 2023, explains that “this is designed to extend the relaxed networking at the trade fair beyond the regular activity at the stands”. The start time is 17:00 at the Exhibition Centre Park.