A Sold Out Centurion 2009

A total of 122 exhibitors presented their new designs on a sold-out collection floor to 188 invited retail jewelry stores and their buying teams at the eighth annual Centurion Show, held Jan. 31 till Feb. 4 in Tucson, Ariz.

Centurion president Howard Hauben said he was pleased with the optimism and resolve that he saw between retailers and vendors at the show. 

“Though business was down as anticipated, orders were indeed written,” he said. “Centurion, our retailers and exhibitors share in success—and difficulties—together. We saw everyone banding together and holding constructive and strategic meetings to create a positive 2009.”

The 2009 Education program at Centurion brought back the popular “Meet the Expert Retailer Discussion Roundtables,” which offered exchanges between retailers and leading authorities on several topics. There was a session with a NASA astronaut and expert seminars, including: Protecting Your Credit Card Transactions; Shipping Sales Out of State — What You Need To Know; Smart, Successful Strategies for Dealing With Your Banker; The Business of Green and How It Affects Your Business, Pricing, Ethics; and Your Bottom Line.

“The general sessions played to full house and our retail panel on pricing, ethics and your bottom line was outstanding and witnessed non-stop questions for the panelists,” Hauben said.

The show saw a return of an evening with InStyle and InStyle Weddings magazines, who this year presented Grammy-winning group, The Pointer Sisters.

Centurion also brought back the popular Super Bowl Party, which offered gourmet food stations and free drinks. Retailers and exhibitors packed the house for the game between the Arizona Cardinals and Pittsburgh Steelers.

For the second year, attendees were invited to “Jewels of the Night,” an evening of stargazing under the famed Tucson skies. Claudia Kretchmer (Steven Kretchmer Designs) and John Shulan (Shulan’s Fairlawn Jewelers in Akron, Ohio) gave attendees an astronomy experience through hi-powered telescopes and their expert knowledge of the night sky.

A Late Night Cabaret featured comedian Chris Titus and enjoyed open bars, cigars, and evening board and card games. Centurion’s Texas Hold’em Tournament was sold out on both evenings and drew a large crowd of spectators. Leisure activities (golf tournament, tennis, walking and the Elizabeth Arden Red Door spa) rounded out the overall experience for 2009 Centurion attendees.