A Venue Connecting People With Their Pets
Niche markets can be difficult to master and even harder to become a market leader in. There are many sub-specialized markets within the events industry; the pet industry is one of the largest. There is a strong bond between pet owners and their pets. Pet lovers are known for their compassion, involvement and willingness to provide when it comes to their pets. The Purina Event Center strives to strengthen this relationship by providing the space and opportunities for life-enriching experiences.
Many venues host events for the pet industry; however, the Purina Event Center is a venue built specifically to cater to the market. Every aspect of the venue was built to meet the needs of pet- centric events, shows, and fundraisers. The Purina Event Center is and one of the only venues created specifically for feline and canine events. They’ve managed to position themselves as the market leader in a very large and particularly specialized market.
The One and Only
The Purina Event Center is located on the Purina Farms grounds in Gray Summit, Missouri, about 45 minutes outside of St. Louis. Purina Farms is a campus of over 300-acres that offers, not only, the Purina Event Center but also the Visitor Center, which provides a family-friendly environment to encourage animal engagement. A petting area with barnyard animals, tractor-drawn wagon rides, and various daily demonstrations are just some of what Purina Farms offers to its guests. One of the biggest draws to the property is the Purina Event Center as it plays host to more than 230 events each year.
The Purina Event Center is an 84,000 square foot indoor, state-of-the-art facility that was added to the Purina Farms grounds in 2010. It is one of the only spaces of its kind built especially for dog and cat events. The Great Hall encompasses over 45,000 square feet of the center as the primary exhibition hall for shows and events. The Great Hall is truly unique as it offers a custom-built, textured, sport flooring that is padded for the comfort and safety of the pets and people. The Gateway Hall has nearly 13,500 square foot of space for grooming and for hosting smaller shows and exhibitions. Alongside the two halls within the facility, there is the Checkerboard Café providing food service for guests, the Founder’s Room for banquets and meetings with a balcony overlooking the show floor, conference rooms, the Service Center, and an off-leash exercise area.
The Purina Event Center provides nearly everything needed for competitive and recreational pet-related events. The center offers agility, rally, and obedience competition equipment as well as tables, chairs, gating, and artificial turf for agility trials. The lighting within the exhibition space is designed to closely match natural sunlight to provide the best environment for showcasing a dog or cat’s coat. No detail was spared when considering what a true dog and cat show-show venue should offer.
The Top Dog in All Pet-Related Events
Though the Purina Event Center has an advantage over other venues, they still face competition like any other event space. More traditional venues may offer a larger space, if needed; hotels and resorts are other common options for this niche market industry. There is an increasing acceptance of pets in public areas (malls, restaurants welcoming pets) and though it may seem to challenge the Purina Event Center, their offerings far outweigh the other big dogs (no pun intended).
The inspiration and mission for their venue is rooted deeply in the love and compassion for people and their pets.
“The most important thing is to bring pets and people closer together. And here on our property, it happens physically but we also know the strongest part of that is really that emotional bond. It’s good for all of us – pets, people and the community.” – Kaite Flamm, Purina Event Center Manager
Bridging the Gap between Products and Events
Purina has been a market-leader in pet care and nutrition and sponsored dog and cat related events for over 16 years. However, they wanted to deepen their commitment to enthusiasts , and so they set out to build a multi-million dollar event space to better serve this community. As part of Purina, The Purina Event Center has the industry experience to make sure that every event brought to the venue will be successful and results in happy and healthy experiences for dogs, cats and their owners and handlers. The Center hosts a wide variety of event types including canine and feline conformation shows, performance trials, recreational activities, fundraisers, adoptathons and more.
The Purina Event Center is a prime choice for any level of enthusiast. In our recent discussion with Kaite Flamm, the Manager of Purina Event Center, she said nearly every organization that brings an event to the Purina Event Center returns year after year. This is so true that the Purina Event Center is currently booking events all the way up into 2020.
Plenty of Room to Grow
The entire Purina Farms campus consists of 346 acres and roughly 100+ acres of the property are currently being utilized. The team at Purina Farms is always looking for new and exciting activities for people to enjoy with their pets, and having so much space available will allow them to grow and add additional offerings. By creating the property with room for improvements and additions, Purina has laid a conscious foundation to continuing success.
According to a 2016 survey done by Franchisehelp.com, the pet industry is booming to the tune of 60 billion dollars each year. People in America now own more pets than ever. People treat their pets like part of the family and pet pampering is a budgeted expense. The pet industry show no signs of slowing its growth; new dog and cat ownership continues to increase at nearly 4% per year. Marketing research company WSL indicated that 81% of respondents are spending the same amount or more on their pets despite the tough economic times. The increase in pet ownership could be attributed to the growing realization of the benefits that animals have on people: stress reduction, lower blood pressure and cholesterol levels, etc.
Being a successful, trusted venue is difficult enough as it is. Being a successful venue that caters to a specific niche is a story all its own. The Purina Event Center takes their mission to heart and it’s evident in the design of the facility that is completely capable of managing and hosting every type of pet-related event. Pet lovers and enthusiasts agree that the Purina Event Center event experience is high quality, and they will keep going back for years to come. In a niche market, it’s hard to excel and stand out above the rest, but the Purina Event Center does just that by being a wonderfully rare venue for a tail-waggenly loyal market.