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Outdoor Retailer Innovation Awards 2024

The 6th annual Outdoor Retailer Innovation Awards recognize the cutting edge and carefully considered products and retail services made famous at the trade show from across all seasons. Determined by a panel of expert judges, winners from all seasons will be recognized at receiption on June 18, 2024 during Outdoor Retailer and Outdoor Design + Innovation Summer in Salt Lake City, Utah. The Outdoor Retailer Innovation Awards are held annually.

How it Works

Two rounds of judging will be conducted. All entries must first be submitted online through the official online Entry Form, and include photos (min two), video (optional), and complete written submission.

After the entry period is officially closed on April 26, 2024, at 5 p.m. PT (Extended!), a panel of expert judges, determined by Outdoor Retailer, will review all completed submissions. Judges will evaluate all submitted products and services based on the Awards Criteria and using a points-based voting system. Finalists will be selected and announced on May 22, 2024. The Finalists will be evaluated by the panel of Judges based on the Awards Criteria to determine Product of the Year and Winners.

Judging Criteria

The Outdoor Retailer Innovation Awards judges will evaluate the products and services based on four criteria:

  • Spark: concept, design, appeal
  • Desire: opportunity, differentiation
  • Function: innovation, functionality, insight
  • Impact: cultural, environmental, business

Products and services must have been unveiled to the market in any capacity – to the industry/trade and/or consumers – during the 2023 calendary year, January 1, 2023 through December 31, 2023, or by the time of entry in early 2024. Products from all seasons are eligible for these one-time-a-year awards. Product prototypes, previews, and beta services will be accepted. All entries will be seen by the judging panel, and if the product is selected as a Finalist, it will be on display during Outdoor Retailer Summer at the Salt Palace Convention Center in Salt Lake City, Utah. 

Each submission must be a single product or service, not a line. Each submission must have its own completed Entry Form and fee. Judges reserve the right to reassign products to other categories if necessary. All questions on the Entry Form must be completed. All decisions by the judges are final.

All questions on the entry form must be answered to the fullest extent, providing judges the ability to better understand the product or service and its innovative characteristics. Failure to complete required fields may result in disqualification.

Entrants do not need to be exhibiting at Outdoor Retailer to be eligible. Exhibit booth and sponsorship opportunities are available - learn more

Finalists and Winners

Finalists will be notified by May 22, 2024. All finalists will be required to provide professional-quality, high-resolution electronic photographs. Video is optional, but highly recommended. Linked video and photos are an option.

No monetary prizes will be awarded. All Finalists will be on display in the Innovation Gallery throughout Outdoor Retailer and Outdoor Design + Innovation Summer, June 17-19, 2024, in Salt Lake City, and Winners will be announced at an awards reception during the show on June 18, 2024. The Winners will be featured on outdoorretailer.com and additional Outdoor Retailer content and communications. All products will be considered by the Outdoor Retailer marketing and promotions team for future placement.

Awards may be presented without respect to specific categories, and judges may choose to not recognize winners in every category. Each winning entry must prove particular innovation as determined by the panel of judges. There will be no refunds for categories that do not have a winner.

A representative from each Finalist company is invited to receive their award during the awards reception on June 18, 2024.

How to Enter

Each online entry must include:

  • Minimum of two (2) and maximum of five (5) color photographs. Video submissions are optional, but highly recommended. Links to video and photos are an option. 
  • Brief descriptions of your product or service.
  • A competition fee of $250 per entry (product or service) will apply to each entry.
  • Entrants may submit more than one entry in any category. A separate entry form must be completed for each entry. No refunds of entry fees will be issued.

By submitting an Entry Form, Entrant is granting Outdoor Retailer, Awards sponsors, and Awards media partners the right, free of charge, to use all included materials and information for marketing, promotional, editorial and judging purposes.

Agencies and related are eligible to submit entries on behalf of their clients in all categories. By doing so, the agency and all representatives confirm that they have obtained permission and consent from the product or service company, and that all submitted information and material is accurate.

Deadline to enter EXTENDED to 5 p.m. PT, April 26, 2024.

Award Categories

  • Accessories – Binoculars, cleaning products, drinkware, filtration devices, first aid, flashlights and headlamps, goggles, hygiene products, knives, pet products, sunglasses, tools, towels, travel equipment, vehicle racks, etc.
  • Apparel – Belts, bottoms (all layers), gloves, headwear, tops (all layers), etc.
  • Backpacks / Bags / Luggage – Backpacks, bags, camera bags, child carriers, hydration systems, mobile phone cases, notebook cases, shoulder bags, travel luggage, waistpacks, etc.
  • Books / Electronic Applications / Electronics - Batteries and chargers, books, electronic equipment, mobile apps, pulse monitors, watches, etc.
  • Camping – Camping stoves, coolers, hammocks, lamps, lanterns, outdoor cookware and kitchenware, outdoor furniture, outdoor kitchens, tarps, tents, etc.
  • Climbing – Belay and rappel devices, carabiners, harnesses, helmets, ice tools (axes, crampons, etc.), quickdraws, ropes, slacklines, trekking poles, etc.
  • Consumables – Drinks and drink powders, food and ingredients, nutrition products, prepared meals, supplements, etc.
  • Cycling – Bicycles, related components and accessories, etc.
  • Footwear – Boots, gaiters, shoes, socks, etc.
  • Materials – Coatings, composites, fabrics, fibers, materials, membranes, new materials, polymers, findings, etc.
  • Retail – Merchandising, consumer outreach, retail store/shop and ecommerce programs, etc.
  • Sleeping – Blankets, bivouacs, camping mats, liners, mattresses, pillows, sleeping bags, etc.
  • Support Services – Programs, products, software or services designed to support retailers, shops and/or brands.
  • Water Sports – Buoyancy aids, canoes, dinghies, inflatables, kayaks, life jackets, paddles, repair and maintenance, stand-up paddleboards, water sport apparel, watersports racks and accessories, etc.\
  • Winter Sports – Bindings, poles, ski and snowboard boots, skis, snowboards, snowshoes, etc.  

Visit outdoorretailer.com to learn more about the trade show, exhibit and sponsorship opportunities, and to see past award winners.

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