Share Your Story to Win 3 FREE Vision Expo Hotel Nights


Attention Eyecare Professionals: Would you like to win three free hotel nights* at Vision Expo West 2012?

All you have to do is click on “leave a comment” above and tell us your personal Vision Expo or Trade Show Story e.g.

  • What is the best new product you learned about at a trade show?
  • Describe your most interesting experience at a trade show.
  • What is the best Optical Class you have taken and why?
  • Did a trade show networking opportunity change your career?
  • Did you meet an interesting celebrity at a trade show, if so who and what were they like?
  • Did you find interesting new products or equipment you never thought you would buy?

The best story will win three free show nights at an official Vision Expo West 2012 hotel*

International Vision Expo & Conference West is the world’s most inclusive ophthalmic conference and expo. The dates for Vision Expo West 2012 are Exhibition: Sept. 6-8, 2012 Education: Sept. 5-8, 2012 at Sands Expo & Convention Center, Las Vegas, NV

So make your comment and we look forward to presenting you with your three free show nights at an official Vision Expo hotel*.

Comments need to be in by July 31, 2012.

* Not all comments will win. Winners will be selected by The Optical Vision Site and International Vision Expo. Comments received after 7.31.2012 will not be eligible for this promotion. Show management to choose and book accommodations at an official show hotel.

Claire Goldsmith MidPage


  1. I have to admit, I love the Swag the best but the classes are great and seeing new products is always good!

  2. I have only attended one Vision Expo and that was in 1999. Due to my nomination, one of my accounts was a finalist in a Transitions dispensary contest and I was invited by Transitions to attend the ceremonies. It was Vision Expo East and Transitions put us up in the Waldorf Astora. As an Iowa farmer’s daughter, this was my first big city experiance! My mother was an optician so I invited her to come with me. How fun to be able to bring my mom the Big Apple. Unfortunately, I came down with the stomach flu about five hours after arriving. I’ll never forget my mom’s comforting words “At least you are throwing up in one of the nicest toilets in New York honey.” While I was able to drag myself to the show floor, I really don’t remember much of the experiance. And no, my account did not win. I would love to experiance another Vision Expo, this time without illness however!

  3. At Vision East, I was the only person from my company at the trade show, and never left my booth during the event. 10 hours straight at the booth every day. I plan on seeing what West has to offer though!

  4. I learned about Hoya’s Free-form lenses and the ability to not use frames but instead just mounted temples on their lenses, which was actually voted best new product at Vision Expo East back in March- that was exciting!

  5. Been an attendee for 8 years strong! Last year was most exciting!
    Had an opportunity to learn about Transitions Vantage last year. One of the most exciting products to hit the industry. As an educator, I was excited to return to California to share the news with my students… During the Transitions product demo, I was able to network with Carol Baez and her team. In April, the Transitions team made it out to the Ontario, CA campus where they did a product demo for the students and offered free lenses for all my students! What a great opportunity to network with the biggest names in the industry!

  6. I love going to Vision Expos! I’ve been to East many times, as I live in New York and that makes it pretty easy to attend. This past March, I really enjoyed meeting the creator of Chemistrie Clips/Eynavision. I love his product, and it was exciting to be able to talk to him about it! I’ve always especially liked the Women in Optics seminars, too. However, I’ve got to say that Vision Expo West 2005, was by far my favorite. I flew to Vegas with my long time boyfriend (we had been dating 18 years) for the Expo/vacation, and came home married to him! We didn’t plan it, and were there alone; our families and friends did get to watch the ceremony via webcam, though. This September 18th will mark our 7th wedding anniversary and our 25th “dating” anniversary. Vision Expo West will always hold a special place in my heart. 🙂

  7. I would have to say my best time ever was the first time I attend the Vision Expo with my Office Administrator. She had never been to anything related to the optical side of the business and I wanted to show her the many choices and the technology that was currently out. We spent the entire day in the Exhibition area and learning about products. It was a fun experience because I was able to show her in person why we needed to upgrade our products and she was able to approve it on the spot. We left the Expo with a new look for our office and a closer relationship with my administrator. I consider going to the Expo’s a great time to connect the higher ups with the products first hand and to show them what others have to offer. I would love to attend another Expo and experience that feeling again!

  8. The only Vision Expo I have been able to attend was last years Vision West Expo. Attending Vision Expo was hands down the most beneficial thing I could have done for our practice. The knowledge I gained from the classes and new products I saw and then implemented in our practice is irreplaceable. The most beneficial optical class I sat in on was a class entitled, “Verifying & Troubleshooting the Latest Lens Technology” by the Director of Global Training of Essilor of America Pete Hanlin. Our patient base is well over 40 and we prescribe digital progressives to every emerging presbyopia now. This class easily showed us how to prescribe digital progressives and then WOW our patients with the products. We reduced our initial errors for prescribing the technology, and increased our confidence in reading, dispensing, and adjusting the eyewear. Our sales for digital progressive lenses have increased by 12% since the last vision expo and I owe it all to the knowledge and confidence gained in this course. We will definitely be returning this year to vision expo.

  9. I’ve always attend optical fairs from a manufacturers view, but in my most recent Vision Expo show I learned that I could be inspired as a consumer as well. It dawned on me that sometimes it takes a show like a Vision Expo to realize that every consumer is different and can be part of many niche orientations. I found myself departing form my typical manufacturers personality into a true shopaholic and consumer. It was the breath of vendors that stimulated me.

  10. I had the opportunity to attend the Vision Expo last year as a student and was able to network with a potential employer at the trade show. I also met with Optovue and have set up an opportunity to put their iVue SD-OCT instrument in the family practice clinic at my school. The students and faculty are excited to bring this cutting edge technology to our patients. The Vision Expo definitely facilitated exposure to new technologies and job opportunities that will bring current and future successes.

  11. mi experiencia fue recordar a N Y bien diferente a la que fui hacia muchos años, pero al respecto de la Expo Optica no cambio casi en nada para los latinos que como yo hacemos mucho esfuerzos para llegar a uno de estos grandes eventos un poco que los ignoran o los pasan desparsibidos. Espero que traten de cambiar poco a poco .
    Gracias por el esfuerzo que hagan

  12. Ok Everyone, If you have ever been a Expo West you know Marchon throws a party to die for! Well after having a complete blast at the party it was time to leave because i had appointments scheduled for the next day. So walking out of the party area back into the casino I noticed this man with his back to me talking to a woman and to my surprise it was the rapper DMX! well i am a middle age woman with kids that they only listen to rap music so i knew who he was right away. I went over to him and asked if i could take a picture with him and he had no problem being interrupted to accommodate my request. while taking the photo people started surrounding us and a crowd occurred. I am sure this did not make him happy, but he took a few more pictures and got out there pretty quick. After pictures with him I sent my texts to everyone I knew. I had have the best time at Expo enjoying looking at the new eyewear and meeting the most amazing people. But i do have to tell you I do like the whole celebrity thing there and getting a little star struck as well!

  13. attended Vision Expo West 2 years ago, I use to sketch out sunglass designs during my downtime at work for no particular reason, after numerous complements on my designs I decided to research a bit on the eyewear industry which lead me to many blogs and sites that mentioned/talked about the Vision Expos. I decided to look further into the expo and was really intrigued by the event, it seemed to be  almost to perfect. I would be able to immures my self with all the different aspects of the industry in one place, oh..ya did I mention it would also be my first time to vegas.. win win situation.

    Arriving to the expo, I was blown away! It was huge big and so inspirational. The staff were extremely nice and very helpful. During the next few days, I attended several classes and speaking engagments (all amazing and FUN) talked with some very cool people, one of my top moments while there was talking with designer “Tom Davies” extremely nice person and very passionate with a great story. 

    Not to sound cheese or dramatic, but to some it will.. I guess one could say that attending the Vision Expo was a bit of a life changing experience for me being that I an a Graphic Designer but after attending the expo I decided to move forward and launch my company. Now i’m the founder of Tommy Owens Eyewear, 100% custom wooden eyewear company, handmade right here in the U.S.A.

    Thank you Vision Expo, and will see you this year!

  14. En lo personal me impresiono mucho el evento, fue la primera vez que visite la EXPO y es algo asi como sentirte como pez en el Agua con las nuevas tecnologias en laboratorio, materiales y exhibición de armazones. Muy recomendable experiencia para toda la gente del ramo Optico.

  15. This will be my second time attending the Vision Expo West . Last year was my first.
    My story begins 4 years ago after I left the mortgage industry with no plan A, B, C or D. I decided to trust the process, the universe and follow my guidance wherever it was going to take me. It was all about Trust. I knew it was going to be an adventure and I was looking forward to it. No expectations. Just taking it one day at a time. Two year later I woke up with an idea that I thought might actually work. I liked it and believed others would like it too. As a member of the Inventors Association of Georgia, I gone to them for assistance. Hired a marketing guru and 3 months later ended up in China. That alone is a story in its own..very Lucy Ricardo kind of a trip…. Anyway, met my future manufacturer, visited his factory and in july, 2011, my first shipment of The Eyeglass Light arrived. Two months later I found myself at the Vision Expo West. New to the industry and new to the entrepreneurial lifestyle, I ventured into the world of Vision. The most amazing part of this journey has been meeting such amazing people. Everyone was so nice and helpful. People were actually taking the time to give me good sound advice. Though wet behind the ears at the event, I was excited to be there. I knew it would take time. It was not going to happen over night, but that’s ok. I still believe in my product and the people and companies who I’ve been doing business with and hopefully, to new companies and people I’ve not yet met but hopefully will meet this September in Vegas. I’m already planing to meet new prospects who I’ve sent samples too and will be attending, plus my product will be displayed in the booth of OptiSource who picked up my product just a few months ago at Vision Expo East, but originally met them last year at Vision Expo West. It’s all coming together. I’m optimistic, enthusiastic and excited for what’s ahead. I know it’s going to be great! Vision Expo Rocks! Thank you so much for being my venue for my little product called The Eyeglass Light. Wishing you all great success and thank you for allowing me to participate in this contest. Even if I lose, it’s nice to put this down in writing as a reminder to me of my journey thus far and it’s only been a year! Warm regards, Helen Gerolemou

  16. Vision expo was very informative. I went with a group of my classmates representing western university in Pomona, CA and we had a great time. We attended a seminar about start up businesses which was very insightful, received a food voucher which I used immediately and scoured through the entire venue looking at all of the equipment offered from various vendors. I highly suggest that anyone who has an opportunity to participate to take full advantage of it. Well worth the time.

  17. I attended the Vision Expo West last year with one of my optometry classmates. For both of us, it was our first time attending the Expo. The biggest shock for me was the wide range of selection available in optical and specialty testing devices. There were companies at the exhibit that I have never heard of. Vision Expo was really informative and educational from my point of view. I took the opportunity to walk around and familiarize myself with the different companies and what they had to offer. There was a huge variety of frames! It was an eye opening experience for me because I began to think about how I would incorporate some of the spectacle designs and technology I saw into my own practice one day.
    The Vision Expo was an excellent opportunity to meet other students and network. The social events that the Vision Expo organized were fantastic. All together it was an excellent experience and I plan on attending this year again!

  18. I went to my first Vision Expo in 2010 with my optical mentor and best friend Carole. When we got there the first booth that caught our attention (not only cause they had champagne) was “Frieze Frames” The booth was all in white and had plush carpet to stand on. They had beautifully made classic retro frames. We met the owners Jason and Marc and quickly befriended these two innovative creators. The whole trade show was fantastic. I most remember the EmPower exhibit with Aspex. Extremely high tech and very original. We took several classes regarding selling multiple pairs, working in a high end optical, and how to sell high end product. We loved how friendly and informative everyone was. It was bright and colorful. The only thing I would do different is actually purchase frames and optical items at the show. I now manage the shop i work at so I have more input and authority than I did when I was there last. I would love to be able to sit down with the reps and purchase right from the show. Viva Las Vegas and Vision Expo West!! Cheers from Canada

  19. It’s a great experience to see familiar faces, new technology, new beautiful frames and lots of promotions. Looking forward to the Vsion Expo!

  20. I have attended Vision Expo in Vegas several times. Two years ago I did not attend any classes but devoted my time to the frame vendors. It was amazing to be introduced to the variety of frame creations. As a frame buyer, it was exciting, hectic, sometimes overwhelming, and definitely amazing! I thoroughly enjoyed my time spent meeting new companies and creators. Of course, being entertained by the Beetles was a highlight that kept the energy going. I have always appreciated Vision Expo in Vegas for their hospitality, excellent courses, and the well organized show that they put on. I look forward to participating in more educational classes and discovering new and unique framewear in my upcoming travels to Vegas!!

  21. The vision expo exhibits are fabulous. There are vast opportunities to see and to learn about the current optical environment. I look forward to going again in September. Thank you for putting on a top notch show.

  22. I have attended Vision Expo West several times. I’ll never forget my first. When it was held in Anaheim, CA. I had the opportunity to see the Devine Donna Summer in concert! She was hired for a private concert. It was an experience I will remember the rest of my life. Every year I soak up the CE and am wowed by new product. See you in six weeks!

  23. I have been to Vision Expo in Vegas twice. I can’t remember the exact years but it has been about ten years or so since I have last been there. My favorite story is a funny one. I was overwhelmed with the exhibit hall. All the glamour, and fancy booths. I was wondering around when all of a sudden I saw a good looking young lady that was at one of the frame booths. I cannot remember which one. But anyway, people (mostly guys) started flocking around and forming a line. I just happened to end up at the beginning of the line accidently. They were getting their picture taken with this young lady. It was my turn and the photographer said, “You’re next”. I said “no thank you. ” I figured I didint’ need my picture taken with some young cutie. My wife certalinly wouldn’t appreciate that. So, I went back to my hotel and found my wife lounging by the pool and I proceeded to tell you this story of all these people flocking around this young lady. She asked my what her name was and I said I didn’t know but she was from Paris. I’m such an idiot. It was PARIS HILTON and I didn’t even know who she was. My wife loves to tell that story.

  24. The best product which caught my attention about two years ago was the digitally enhanced progressives. It is exciting to see the optical industry making strides to develop new lenses with the consumer’s eye movements in mind. The most interesting experience at the trade show was to see so many products as well as the passion with which the representatives explained their products. I had many follow-ups even after the show to see how I enjoyed the explanation of such products. The best optical class came about sort of an accident because it was meant for optometrists; however it was very interesting because it dealt with ocular diseases and how to treat them. Although I did not meet any celebrities at the vision expo it was worthwhile attending because I saw familiar faces and that in itself is enough for me.

  25. Hola, gracias por enviarme correos siempre tan amables. He asistido cada año a ExpoLasVegas desde hace muchos años. Hace dos años despues de haberme ausentado del evento por uno o dos, encontré muy cambiadas las avenidas y nuevos puentes y no teniamos
    gps. Fuimos al show de Cher y de regreso al hotel estuvimos manejando durante mas de 2 hrs ya que mi colega decía estar bien orientada y yo tambien JA,JA! Fuimos y regresamos como tres veces a Old Vegas hasta que de pronto estaba nuestro hotel frente a nosotros.
    El año pasado estuvo deslucido el evento; me parece que hubo menos empresas y para los mexicanos no ofrecen oportunidad de ventas en algunas empresas. Los eventos gratuitos para los asistentes practicamente cero. Nosotros somos varias oftalmologas -unas 10 a 12- que siempre asistimos, asi que compramos material muy variado y suficiente para varios meses.
    Además siempre vemos uno o dos shows y comemos en lugares lo mas agradable posible con buen vino y buen pan. Asistir este año será un gran gusto. MUCHAS GRACIAS, Ma Luisa

  26. The last time I went to the Vision Expo was twelve years ago when I was an optician. I spent a few days there and had a blast. Having finished optometry school and residency, getting married, having children and working for a bit I was ready to start a practice. Life had been busy and last year was the first time I had gone back to the show since 2000. I wanted to go to the Vision Expo to network and inquire about what I needed to do in order to start a new practice. With increased responsibilities at home and little help I had to make this all happen in ONE day. This meant dropping the kids off at daycare/preschool as early as possible in the morning, hopping on a plane to Las Vegas, going to the convention center to meet all the exhibitors/vendors I was hoping to talk to, then hopping back on the plane to San Francisco that same evening so I could be back in time to pick up my kids. My husband was coming with me and we were determined to make this work. What we encountered, though, was excessive traffic in the morning after we dropped off the children on our way to the airport and being misdirected at the airport parking lot leaving us on the wrong side of the terminal from where our flight was taking off. Despite our lack baggage and our very fast running legs we still missed our flight. Just as we got to the gate we saw the plane push away. I was devastated because I realized we had lost a few precious hours waiting for the next flight. My husband was very encouraging and decided we needed to make the best of the situation. With the Vision Expo app on our phones we were able to map out where each exhibitor/vendor was going to be and plotted them all out. We decided to skip lunch and make a bee line through the exhibit hall, allowing ourselves 20 minutes to talk with each of the exhibitors. In addition to all this madness, I was also a lactating mother at the time so I would have to stop every three hours, find a semi private spot with an electrical outlet, make milk and find ice to pack it in. Surprisingly, while extremely rushed, everything went smoothly as soon as we got to the convention center. We had a chance to talk with everyone we had intended to talk with and we were grateful for all the candy and snacks we found along the way since we didn’t have time to eat. We ended up having dinner at the airport before our returning flight and managed to get back in time to pick up our kids from my brother’s house, whose wife was kind enough to watch them for a few hours for us. What a whirlwind day that was but we truly felt accomplished. I’m still in the middle of planning my practice but I wouldn’t be nearly as far as I am now had I not met my contacts from last year at the show. This year I’m hoping to be able to slow down and enjoy the show a little bit more. Stopping for lunch wouldn’t hurt either.

  27. Hello to all, being at the expo bring us new ideas to continue motivating and pushing our bussiness, there’s so many friendly people that always supporting ideas and provide better accesories, ideas and tips, very profesionally and equipments from all brands, we love to go to las vegas and take the opportunity to view and learn from the vision expo. The fun thing, We came from Tijuana Mexico and everytime we go to the expo got lost even do we’re at front of the expo.

  28. Hi y’all,
    This year I had the absolute pleasure of attending vision expo in NYC. It was awesome. Since I’m based in Mexico, I had a great time showing my associates new merchandise and machinery in the market. We were able to purchase frames at great package prices from venders and let our small opticals be known as potential clients. Also dispencing course we attended and new contact wear dispensing. She was amazed on how many people attend these events and so many different companies offering some unique services. I think giving someone the best outlook of what the optical business is and its potential through vision expo was the best. NYC was awesome too…

  29. Wooooowwwww! Our entire office ( 7 of us ) have been attending Vision Expo West for the last ten years! Every year around July things spice up in the office because of the anticipation of Vision Expo. All of us attend continuing education every year and learn new things at the exhibit hall as well. Not only are we learning new things but having fun while we do it. Always look forward to the Revolution and Marchon booth, they really know how to put on a show… the Ed Hardy models make a great hit!
    Look forward to it and many many years to come!!!!!!

  30. For 10 years I come attending at VISION EXPO East and couple times to VISION EXPO WEST, my experience with this event is exciting, because in 2002 was with my first son , Gabriel, and that was phenomenal, all booths people were so niice with him.
    Last year I attended with my wife and according with OBG Dr ‘s wife, my New daugther was procreated for that date.
    Today my daugther is a pretty girl of 1.5 months years old and GOD BLESS SHE.
    Once again, my new baby, VALENTINA with my old boy GABRIEL could attend to VISION EXPO with me in family.
    For my history I consider VISION EXPO as my family, because is the best event of the world where OPTOMETRIST Drs, as me, we feel how family.

  31. This is pretty history of my live, I have learned technology fir my Company, I have purchased New optometry equipment and I have improved my profesional performance.
    But the best is tsht my family have seen that with me because they assist with me.

    Thanks VISION EXPO.

  32. I am in practice since 1986, I know that I have attended Vision expo NY for close to all of the years since. i look forward to the meetings , seeing old friends, and walking around the convention hall. I really enjoy the fashion runway shows. usually the most current technology is always on display. I have bought every single piece of equipment directly from show vendors. The discounts are usually best when purchased there. Mostly I look forward to all the good candy given away

  33. I am a second year student at HillsboroughCommunity College in Tampa Florida. I just recently came back from a leadership conference in San Antonio with Opticians Association of America. An incredible experience that has empowered me to grow in the field of Opticianry. I look for opportunities that I may be able to learn and grow from my peers and help strengthen our future. Our network possibilities grow with every chance to included to attend conventions and I would love an opportunity to be a part of this.

  34. I enjoy going to Vision West Expo every year. In enjoy meeting new people in the industry and enjoy walking through the expo to look at all the new products. I also try to take a class or two. This year my dr will not be paying for me to go. I really want to go and may have to pay my own way. It is worth it! Thanks

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