Beacon Awards Set the Stage at Hardware Conference

The Hardware Conference is set for August 13-15 at the JW Marriott right on the water in Marco Island, Fla.The Hardware Conference is set for August 13-15 at the JW Marriott right on the water in Marco Island, Fla.»

After dealing with the stress of operating during the pandemic, hardware retailers are ready for some serious relaxation. Why not kick back on a sandy beach while learning new ways to improve your business? Start making plans to attend the 2021 Hardware Conference, set for August 13-15 at the JW Marriott Marco Island Beach Resort in Marco Island, Fla. It is designed to be affordable and family-friendly.

The event, preparing for its 32nd edition, is the industry’s largest event bringing together independent retailers regardless of wholesaler affiliation. The Hardware Conference offers the perfect opportunity to find ways to improve your business while having fun and relaxation at a world-class resort right on the Gulf of Mexico, with miles of sandy white beaches.

Retail attendees have a chance for one-on-one dialogue with vendors.Retail attendees have a chance for one-on-one dialogue with vendors.»

Upgraded in 2017 to JW Marriott status, the resort offers an oasis of luxurious comfort with activities designed for the whole family. The JW Marriott has adopted a COVID-based safety initiative, “Connect with Confidence,” to ensure the safety of Conference attendees.

“We are actively monitoring the COVID-19 virus outbreak for this year’s Hardware Conference based upon the CDC guidelines for mass gatherings. The safety of our guests, employees and hotel staff is our number one priority,” said Craig Cope, who directs the Conference with his wife, Shanti.

Discover the latest new products from leading vendors during open exhibit hours, then pick up new ideas for your store while interacting with fellow retailers at three cocktail receptions, two breakfasts and two dinner banquets.

The Conference schedule leaves you and your family plenty of time to enjoy three swimming pools, a wide variety of water activities, spa services at the Spa by JW® or a relaxing walk along the white sand beach.

The 2020 and 2021 Beacon Award winners will be honored during awards banquets on Friday and Saturday evening of the Conference.The 2020 and 2021 Beacon Award winners will be honored during awards banquets on Friday and Saturday evening of the Conference.»

The industry’s premier event for the independent retail hardware channel offers an awards program that was launched in 2013 to recognize the “best of the best” retailers. The Beacon Awards are co-sponsored by The Hardware Conference and The Hardware Connection. Epicor, Ettore Products, Do it Best Corp. and Orgill provide additional sponsorship support for the program.

Since The Hardware Conference was forced to cancel last year due to the pandemic, the 2020 Beacon Award winners will be recognized during Friday evening’s banquet. Two Retail Beacon Award winners will be honored along with eight retailers recognized for their community service initiatives during the pandemic.

Then on Saturday evening the 2021 Beacon Award winners will be honored, including Retail Beacon winners for each sponsoring wholesaler and Best New Stores. All Beacon winners will receive all-expense paid trips for two to the 2021 Hardware Conference including conference registration, airfare, hotel and meals. They will also receive a special Beacon Award trophy and be featured in an article in The Hardware Connection.

Get your nominations in now for the Best New Store category—the entry deadline is May 3, 2021. For more information on the nomination process, contact Editor Chris Jensen at chris@thehardwareconnection.com.

Leading vendors participate in the Conference with tabletop booths showcasing their latest product introductions. Dealers can engage in informal conversations with manufacturers without the pressure of buying, both during exhibit hours and at meal functions and receptions.

The Conference is designed for the whole family, with Saturday afternoon set aside with vendor-sponsored golf, beach activities sponsored by Wooster Brush, a shelling excursion and Everglades airboat excursion. For more information, go to https://thehardwareconference.com or contact Craig or Shanti Cope at 305-853-0049.

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