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What to Expect at the 2018 Mid-America Restaurant Expo

Mark your calendars! It’s time for the 2nd annual Mid-America Restaurant Expo at the Greater Columbus Convention Center from January 28-29, 2018. It’s the premiere event that showcases the latest trends, tools and topics impacting the restaurant industry. So make sure you register before it’s too late!

The MAREXPO will be held from 10AM to 5PM on Sunday, the 28th and 10AM to 4PM on Monday, the 29th. Whether you’re an independent operator, food truck business, chain, start-up or established restaurant, the MAREXPO has something for you.

This two-day event includes an exhibit hall featuring more than 300 booths, a keynote presentation from celebrity Chef Michael Symon, over 50 seminars and demonstrations, the Pizza Pizzazz culinary competition, a food truck park on the show floor, networking opportunities and so much more.

Expect to see over 4,000 presenters, exhibitors, and independent operators at the 2018 Mid-America Restaurant Expo!

The Stages

You won’t want to miss the MAREXPO presentations, inspiring and informative seminars and live culinary demonstrations on five different stages:

  • Innovation Stage
  • Demo Stage
  • Trends & Tech Stage
  • Dessert Stage
  • Brews, Wine & Spirits Stage

You’ll learn everything from how to build a digital marketing strategy to top consumer trends of 2018, avoiding mistakes in labor costs, and discover the latest products and services catered to the foodservice industry.

Presenters at the MAREXPO include the Central Ohio Food Truck Association, TechEmergence, The Catering Coach, White Castle and Google, as well as exclusive presentations from industry experts.

Exhibit Hall Booths and Presentations

The exhibit hall is 10 percent larger than last year, boasting more booths, experiences, products and services. Top brand names like Campbell's Foodservice, LaNova Wings, Libbey Inc., Oneida, OpenTable, Polar King International, Sysco, Kraft Heinz Company, Velvet Ice Cream and Zaxby’s Franchising LLC are some of the hundreds of exhibitors!

Flavors of the Midwest logo

Flavors of the Midwest

Brand new for 2018 is the Flavors of the Midwest Tasting Pavilion, where you’ll sample mouthwatering food and pastries from bakeries, ethnic cuisine and locally-grown ingredients. These 18 carefully selected companies are looking to break into the industry. So stop by, grab a bite to eat and chat!

The Pizza Pizzazz Culinary Competition

The MAREXPO is home to the legendary contest that crowns “The Best Pizza in the Midwest!” Forty contestants will enter their best pizza for blind judging on Sunday morning. Only six finalists will be chosen to enter a second pizza for the first-place prize of $5000, second place will win $1000 and third place will be awarded $500. Don’t miss the big announcement of winners at the Pizza Pizzazz Awards Sunday at 3:30PM.

Establishment LogoThe Establishment

This large area is dedicated to sampling new craft beer, wine, spirits and sodas in a tavern-like atmosphere. Expect lots of networking and great conversation over drinks!

Networking Opportunities

Kick off your year with business-building and informative networking with Connect at the Expo, a networking-style event on Monday morning with a full breakfast! Both networking events are free with your MAREXPO admission.

Register Today

Now that you’ve read more details, you won’t want to miss this incredible opportunity to experience the biggest restaurant and foodservice event of the year! Gain exposure for your business, sample delicious food, develop new business relationships in the industry, and discover the latest and greatest technology to take back to your office and kitchens. It’s time to get your tickets and register today!

The Mid-America Restaurant Expo is open to members of the foodservice industry, and attendees will receive exclusive rates at local hotels, including the Hilton Columbus Downtown, Crowne Plaza, Hyatt Downtown and Hampton Inn & Suites.

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Great show this year! Lots of booths and a few great competitions! Nice work!

Jeremy Galvin, Master Pizza

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