Logging Expo brings together suppliers and customers

ASHWAUBENON, Wis. — Joe O’Dovero is exactly where he wants to be — putting potential buyers in the operator’s seat of a Bobcat excavator.

What do you want to know

  • Three-day Great Lakes Logging and Heavy Equipment Expo runs through Saturday
  • It is expected to bring several thousand people to the Green Bay area
  • It has an estimated economic impact of around $3 million

He is one of the Three Day Sellers Great Lakes Logging and Heavy Equipment Show at the Resch Center complex near Lambeau Field.

“What we’re hoping to do is get back in front of people, show them the equipment we have,” said O’Dovero, general manager of Midway Rentals and Sales near Marquette, Michigan.

“Our equipment is a bit bigger and a bit more expensive. In general, showing it to people, engaging them and getting them to try it out is key to getting them to come and try a Bobcat and maybe, eventually, buy one,” O’Dovero added.

These hands-on, first-person interactions are a key part of O’Dovero’s business, he said.

“It’s not like a pair of tennis shoes that you can just buy on the internet. We have to be face to face with our gear,” O’Dovero said. “Between Milwaukee hand tools and Bobcat equipment, it’s imperative for us to be face to face with people, given that the price tags there things are usually a bit higher than most things you can buy on the internet.”

(Spectrum News 1/Nathan Phelps)

The show is organized by the Great Lakes Timber Professionals Association. This is the first time the event has been held in Green Bay since 2010.

It comes at a time when business travel and events are rebounding from a near-shutdown at the height of the pandemic.

While leisure travel has largely rebounded, business travel continues to gain momentum, said Nick Meisner of Discover Green Bay.

“As for the recovery in 2019, we are still working on it,” he said. “We have projections from industry research pros that say it could be a few more years, but our sales team has had the busiest year when it comes to trade shows and meeting with customers we’ve ever seen. she never had. This works towards events that occur in 2026, 2027 and beyond.

But he said he is optimistic about what the future holds.

(Spectrum News 1/Nathan Phelps)

“We’re not sitting on the sidelines waiting for things to come back,” Meisner said. “We are actively taking steps with community members to make Green Bay an attractive location for a business to hold its convention or meetings.”

O’Dovero and other vendors meet with potential customers until midday Saturday, when the expo closes.

“People here, a lot of them, are from the northern Wisconsin area, which is new territory for us because we opened a new store in Kingsford, Michigan,” O’Dovero said. “It was great to be in front of people and we will continue to do these shows as much as possible.”

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