By Christine Yeh

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The optical industry is a special place to be. Once you arrive, you immediately become a part of a large but tight-knit family of professionals who play a variety of roles in the industry. All share a mutual goal: providing eyecare professionals with the products, tools and services they need to successfully run their business and satisfy the vision care needs of their customers and patients.

Twice a year, a family “reunion” takes place at Vision Expo East and West, where members of the industry convene to display and promote their latest and greatest new products and services. It is a bustling and jubilant environment as attendees stroll down the aisles of the show floor popping in and out of vendor booths. Many are there to buy new products and take advantage of special show deals or checking out interactive displays, contests and giveaways offered by exhibitors. Some attend panels with informative topics, as well as take part in live education courses offered on site. And of course, many stop by the Jobson Optical Group booth to pick up copies of the latest issues of 20/20, Vision Monday, the Vision Expo Show Daily and other Jobson publications, and to find out more about our Frames Data and Jobson Research services.

Jobson Optical Group and 20/20 have a longstanding partnership with Vision Expo since the show’s inception nearly 40 years ago. As trade partners and the leading creator and communicator of B2B content, we understand the importance of these trade shows and the commanding presence we hold. To coincide with the shows, 20/20 dedicates our coverage twice a year to Expo with our special show issues. These show issues are significant vehicles for industry vendors to showcase and preview their new product and service offerings for readers to look for when they attend Vision Expo. This also gives 20/20 the opportunity to spotlight new eyewear style trends for the upcoming season and introduce new brand debuts to help our readers manage and tailor their frame board assortment to best fit the eyewear and lifestyle needs of their customers. Our renowned fashion photo shoots bring the eyewear to life portraying the frames on face and the styling possibilities each frame provides. Our still life photos highlight design details, colorations and shapes for a closer look at each frame. It is often said that 20/20 romances the eyewear, and while there is much truth to this adage, eyewear needs to be physically touched, held and tried on for the buyer to be committed. Our goal is to bring all these elements together, and one of the best places to do this is at the shows via our Expo issues.

Storytelling is also at the heart of what we do at 20/20. Seeing and showing the eyewear is important but many of the eyewear collections we feature have their own stories to tell… design inspirations, special charitable causes, celebrity and athlete collaborations. Communicating these stories is our specialty—we take pride as the leaders in delivering exclusive coverage tied to these stories, and our show issues provide the opportune environment, especially when these designers and celebrities are able to make a special appearance at Vision Expo, giving readers the exciting chance to meet and pose for a photo with them.

In looking back at 20/20’s presence at Vision Expo throughout our history, each year is special but there are some that stand out in our memories and hold special places in our hearts. With New York City hosting its last Expo East this month, it is especially sentimental for the NYC-based 20/20 team, as we also celebrate the 50th anniversary of covering this industry. New York is all we ever knew for Expo East, and we will always remember what our city means to all the show issues we published and the setting for the industry’s largest family reunion of our closest opti-friends. It’s New York or nowhere as the famous saying goes, but we are looking forward to new beginnings and making new memories at the new host city of Orlando, Fla., in 2025. In the meantime, join us for a nostalgic look back at our Expo presence via the special partnerships we cultivated and the coverage presented in our show issues. There is even more to see at Expo East—visit our special 50th anniversary installation for a visual representation of 20/20 and the industry over the past five decades. See you at the show! ■