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November 24, 2004

Deaf Expo Results for '04 are In

From: CSD - Nov 24, 2004

Release Date: November 23, 2004
CSD Communications Office

Deaf Expoâ„¢ Draws 7,700 in Anaheim

SIOUX FALLS, S.D. – Deaf Expo celebrated its 12th consecutive show with continued high attendance and an increased number of exhibitors. By show end, 7,729 patrons had attended from 29 states, California and five countries. A total of 83 exhibitors participated. Deaf Expo 2004 West was held Nov. 5–6 at Anaheim Convention Center next to Disneyland.

Sponsors were Greater Los Angeles Agency on Deafness (GLAD) and Sprint Relay. Patrons marveled at the playful show set-up, convenient parking lot and a bustling crossroad layout with activities at each junction. The city trams brought patrons from the official Deaf Expoâ„¢ hotel to the show. Patrons were very comfortable in wide aisles throughout Exhibit Hall E, even at the show's peak on Saturday when the entire building was packed! Childcare was bustling with over 80 deaf, hard of hearing and hearing children who played with numerous toys donated by Wal-Mart on both show days. The South Dakota Association of the Deaf also made a first time donation to provide electronic games in the Teenage Block.

Popular new highlights at this show were "Deaf Home Improvement" supported by Rebuilding Together and Home Depot with hands-on demonstrations and presentations. Master builder Bernard Brown spoke on making your house "deaf-friendly." The Caption Film Demonstration featured new film captioning technology from Dolby Laboratories and presentations by InSight Cinema.

Robert Traina was marvelous as the energetic host of the Deaf World Stage, introducing fun performances and skits on both show days. The Deaf World Stage, supported by SorensonVRS, offered hearing dog demonstrations, appearances by the Russian TOYS Theater troupe made possible by Sprint California Relay Service, DEAF$aire game shows and IceWorm performances reflecting deaf and hearing situations which were well attended!

With 133 exhibit spaces, all exhibit categories were well represented, enabling patrons to shop for deaf-related holiday gifts, browse the latest in technology offerings and get information on various services and product announcements. The T-Mobile booth had a sale on Sidekick II and was packed with patrons, some who waited patiently in lines for over an hour! MCI announced a new feature, My IP RELAY number, where you can receive voice relay calls on your pager or computer.

Sponsor GLAD had a presence with a large exhibit. Next to it was the "GLAD Room" where GLAD personnel shared information on GLAD's varied health and human services. The show was visually accessible to patrons through a visual announcement system with 10 TV monitors throughout the exhibit hall. This was made possible by AT&T Relay. An Internet cybercafe for patrons to experience text and video relay calls using AOL Instant Messenger (AIM) was made possible by America Online.

Seminars were well-attended with a wide range of topics from "Are Muslims All The Same" to health, fitness, dental care, real estate and ASL storytelling. The Technology Forum covered video relay, instant messaging, CapTel, emergency preparedness, Sprint Relay Wireless and Sidekick. Sign Language Playhouse provided sign language students with opportunities to interact and practice their signing skills.

On Friday evening, the talented Rathskellar group performed at Anaheim High School. The show was supported by MCI Global Relay and was followed by Gallaudet Club gathering. On Saturday evening, actress Michelle Banks hosted "Deaf Expoâ„¢ Terrace" with dinner, DJ and dancing on the top floor of Desert Palms Hotel & Suites, the official Deaf Expoâ„¢ hotel.

Plans for Deaf Expo 2005 will be announced shortly. Deaf Expoâ„¢, a CSD event, is the country's largest consumer trade show targeted at the deaf and hard of hearing market. Interested patrons and exhibitors can sign up in advance on the electronic mailing list of official show web site at