DODGE CITY – The 3i Show has changed its date – moving from July to a fall exhibition.
Eddie Estes, president of the Western Kansas Manufacturers Association, which puts on the show, said the decision was made after significant consideration was given to exhibitor feedback as well as crop schedules, other farm show dates and multiple other factors.
“We always evaluate every year the show and exhibitor comments and the farmers and ranchers that attend,” Estes said. “That is the reason we came up with the conclusion to move it back to October."
“All we ever want to do is the right thing for the exhibitors and their customers. The new dates reflect the considerations of the exhibitors and farmers, ranchers and producers that attend the show," he said.
Previously the show was in April before moving to May and, finally, in 2012, to July and to a new location. Instead of rotating it between Garden City and Great Bend each year, organizers built a permanent location at Dodge City.
The Ford County Building Commission broke ground for the 179,000-square-foot Western State Bank Expo Center in November 2011, using $9.8 million in bonds to pay for the project. Estes said at the time that roughly 90,000 square feet is concrete, and the rest is a dirt floor that can house livestock and demonstrations.
Outside there is about 1.5 million square feet in exhibit space.
The show is still at the Expo Center. Future 3i Show dates will be the second Thursday through Saturday each October. Show hours are 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. daily.
Fall is a busy time on the farm, but surveys of exhibitors helped organizers set a new date, said Estes.
“We were trying to come up with a time that things would be a little milder,” Estes said of the weather. “Also, (exhibitors) can have demonstrations during that time that we can’t have during the summer.
This year's show is Oct. 8-10. In 2016, the show is Oct. 13-15.