Last week, pool and spa pros from all over the country came together at the annual PSP Expo, which returned to New Orleans for the first time since 2012. In-between bites of gumbo and sips of hurricanes, attendees enjoyed a bustling show floor, a well-rounded assortment of classes and, of course, opportunities to network with new contacts and old friends.

If you couldn’t make it, or just want to live it all over again, here are a few highlights from the show.

  • Our October issue shared the winners of APSP’s Awards of Excellence, but there was still one last honor to pass out at the Expo: The Fan Favorite award, given to the project voted by industry peers to be the best. Who won, you ask? Clearwater Construction Group (Burlington, N.C.), for the beautiful cantilevered project found at the top. (We at AQUA also love the project — it was featured on the cover of our October issue.)

  • Evosus Business Management Software spiced up the show floor with a couple rambunctious games of Family Feud. All questions were industry themed, from “What’s the craziest clothing you’ve seen people wear in a pool,” to “What’s the weirdest animal you’ve found in a pool?” After each game, Evosus held a drawing and gave away a $500 Visa gift card to one of the audience members.

  • Meanwhile, at the Bullfrog Spas booth, show attendees were treated to an eye-opening virtual reality experience. Those who tried it learned virtual reality is more than a cool technology — it has the potential to radically change the sales experience for both salespeople and customers.

  • After a long day on the show floor, the WAVE Young Professionals Network went to Fulton Alley to unwind with some bowling and games. Jason Vaughan, current group chairman, introduced Mitch Katz (Elite Landscaping, Poughkeepsie, N.Y.) and Skye Svenningsen (Zodiac Pool Systems) as 2016-2017 WAVE Network committee co-chairs.

  • This year’s robust Product Showcase meant there was steep competition for the coveted Best New Product honors. This year, first place went to LaMotte for the WaterLink Spin Touch. Second went to Ramuc for its new Ultra Pro 2000 Low VOC Pool Paint.

What did you think of the show this year? Comment with your thoughts.

Cailley Hammel is Managing Editor of AQUA Magazine.