Resources

Exhibitor Resources & FAQs

Download a PDF of all Exhibitor Resources & FAQs here.

Download a PDF of 2018 Pricing and Important Deadlines here.

The USA Science & Engineering Festival is organized by Science Spark, a 501(c)3 non-profit science outreach organization best known for producing the inaugural and hugely successful San Diego Science Festival in 2009 and the USA Science & Engineering Festivals in Washington, DC, (2010 – present). Science Spark was founded by serial entrepreneur Larry Bock to create compelling and engaging science festivals to inspire the next generation of scientists and engineers. The USA Science & Engineering Festival is backed by a strong Advisory Board made up of Nobel Laureates, government and industry leaders, experienced educators and other thought leaders in science education. The Festival is funded through corporate sponsorships, grants, and private donations. We are able to create this Festival, offer heavily discounted exhibit space and make Festival events free of charge for the general public because of our sponsors and donors, in particular our Founding and Presenting Host, Lockheed Martin. Science Spark is operating out of San Diego and is run by a very small team of dedicated professionals and volunteers.

  • Thursday, April 5 – XSTEM Symposium: Invitation-Only
    • 9:00am to 3:00pm
    • Registration required; for more information click here
  • Friday, April 6 – Sneak Peek Friday
    • 9:00am to 3:00pm
    • Registration required; for more information click here
  • Saturday, April 7 –EXPO
    • 10:00am – 6:00pm
    • Open to the general public
  • Sunday, April 8—EXPO
    • 10:00am – 4:00pm
    • Open to the general public

 

NOTE: All Exhibitors must staff their booths for the duration of Expo dates/times above, including Sneak Peek Friday. 

In Washington, DC, at the Walter E. Washington Convention Center (www.dcconvention.com)

801 Mt Vernon Pl NW
Washington, District of Columbia 20001

Get Directions

We expect attendance of 350,000+ visitors over the 3-day Expo. On average, Exhibitors of the 2016 Festival reported 5,000-12,000 visitors to their booths over the course of the 3-day Expo!

Sneak Peek Friday is an invitation-only event for students and teachers from underserved schools, Homeschoolers, Military families, Government Officials and their Staffers, and the Press. All exhibitors are required to participate and must be completely set up by 5:00pm Thursday evening. Please contact [email protected] with questions or if you have issues participating in Sneak Peek Friday.

As always, the Festival Expo will Celebrate Science and Engineering! The Expo will be organized by pavilion categories to allow guests easy navigation and exploration. Some of the pavilions will include:

  • Natural Sciences (includes biology, chemistry, physics)
  • Earth Science (includes earth, sea, sky, weather)
  • Astronomy/Space Exploration
  • Engineering (includes robotics)
  • Health and Medicine
  • Energy
  • Social Sciences (includes psychology and sociology)
  • Math/Computer Science
  • High Technology (includes nanotechnology and green technology)
  • Kids Pavilion (for children under 7 years of age)

Exhibitor fees apply unless your organization receives a grant or is a sponsor.

Exhibitor fees for the Basic/Standard 10’x10’ booth package are:

  • $1,250 for non-profit organizations
  • $1,750 for for-profit businesses

The cost for a space in the Career Pavilion is $250, and includes a 6′ table and 2 chairs.

Each Standard 10′ x 10′ Booth includes the following equipment:

  • 1 – 11” x 17” Identification Sign with Company Name and Booth Number
  • 8’ High Draped Back & 3’ High Side Walls (white)
  • 1 – 6’L x 24”W x 30”H Skirted Table (white)
  • 2 – Plastic Contour Chairs
  • 1 – Wastebasket
  • 1 – Standard Electrical Outlet (5 Amp located at the back of your booth)

A Standard Electrical Outlet can accommodate 1 laptop or 1 small device.

The Career Pavilion is meant for Organizations who wish to share information with attendees on their STEM programs.

The STEM Career Pavilion will encourage students and other visitors to see what career possibilities are available to them. Four different kinds of activities will take place in the Pavilion:

  1. College Fair – Students meet representatives from some of the leading colleges and universities focused on STEM.
  2. STEM Programs Exposition – Opportunity for visitors to find out about internships, mentorships, scholarships and after-school programs.
  3. Job Fair – Gives students and others the chance to meet some of the companies now recruiting for STEM-related professionals.
  4. Meet the Scientists & Engineers – Allows students to personally meet real-life role models in STEM.

For more info and to apply, click here.

 

Booth placement and configuration will be determined based on -various criteria, including sponsorship level, date by which all exhibit information is received, and special needs for your exhibit.  You will be able to specify your location preferences by thematic pavilion in the Exhibitor Portal.  We will release booth numbers and locations in early 2018.

Click here to see our interactive floor-plan from 2016.

This will give you an idea of what the 2018 floor plan will look like.

Please note – the 2018 floor plan will not be released until late 2017.

All exhibits should be highly interactive and targeted at a 10th grade level or below understanding of science. Please refrain from using static displays. The best exhibits are typically those that have a clear take-home message. We strongly encourage having scientists and engineers at the booth to interact with people and answer questions. For useful tips on how to create an impactful exhibit, read our Top Ten Tips to Create an Exhibit that Rocks!- Click here to open, review and print this PDF.

The Exhibitor Portal is an online tool where all Expo exhibitors and performers update their contact and exhibit information, as well as pay for their booth space. Exhibitors are provided with log in and password information via email once they have registered to participate.

Each confirmed exhibitor will be asked to provide the following on the Exhibitor Portal:

  • Exhibit Profile Information
  • Confirmation of a Vehicle
  • Risk Assessment Form
  • Proof of Insurance

The GES Exhibitor Expresso Ordering Site is the ordering platform that the USASEF Exhibitors will use to access the 2018 Exhibitor Manual and ordering forms to purchase additional materials, including: Electricity, Internet, Carpet etc.

You will be sent your booth number in January 2018, after which you will be able to log in and complete the needed forms.

The Exhibitor Portal is the online platform that ALL exhibitors are required to log-into to fully register for the 2018 Expo. This is where you will provide your Exhibit information, Risk assessment form and proof of insurance.

The GES Exhibitor Expresso Ordering Site is the ordering platform that the USASEF Exhibitors will use to access the 2018 Exhibitor Manual and ordering forms to purchase additional materials, including: Electricity, Internet, Carpet etc.

 

  • A link to the 2016 Exhibitor Manual and Expresso site can be found below (this is for reference only as all information will be updated for 2018).
  • The Exhibitor Manual is your one stop shop for accessing all exhibitor order forms and important updates.
  • The 2018 Manual will be released in late 2017. Click here to help for budgeting purposes (prices will change slightly but can be used as a baseline).

If you need to purchase additional services in excess of what is explained above, please order from the following vendors:

  • Hi-Tech Electric – handles electrical needs above the package offering, labor to distribute the power in the booth (i.e. if you need the power in the front right corner instead of the back of the booth) and plumbing/water requests.
  • Smart City – handles all wired and wireless internet and telephone requests.
  • Centerplate/NBSE – handles all food and beverage requests.
  • CSI – handles overall event security and booth security requests.
  • GES – handles all furniture, carpet, sign hanging, installation and/or dismantle labor, freight services to include material handling and the option for inbound/outbound shipping to and from show site and can assist with providing specialized display pieces or furniture if required.

*Please note: The vendors listed above are exclusive to Festival Services.  If you are looking to work with an outside vendor for any of the services listed above, you must first speak with the Festival Team prior to scheduling any services.

The ordering forms for the above services can be found online through the GES Exhibitor Expresso Ordering Site.

Click here for the 2018 Estimated Exhibitor Cost Sheet – Coming Soon!

 

Your entire exhibit must be contained within your booth space.

Storage of any boxes or supplies must also be contained within your space.

Additional storage space is available at an additional cost from GES.

You will be prompted to pay your exhibitor booth fees upon your first login in to the Exhibitor Portal. Additional fees will be invoiced once they have been assessed, approx. 3-4 months prior to the Expo. If you are a sponsor, your exhibitor booth fee is included in your sponsorship or you have already been invoiced for additional space, however, your additional fees will be invoiced separately at a later date. You may pay by credit card or check. Please note that we are unable to fill out vendor forms. All pertinent information is included on the invoice. You may download our W-9 form via the Exhibitor Portal.

Once you reserve a booth, you will receive a log-in for our Exhibitor Portal. Exhibitors are required to list their needs through our Exhibitor Portal. For specific questions please contact [email protected].

  • Lots of energy
  • Bottled Water and Snacks for your booth staff/volunteers
  • Your mobile phone
  • Phone numbers of all your staff and volunteers who will be working the booth throughout the weekend
  • UL-approved extension cord(s)
  • Tape
  • Your Festival T-shirt. If you are planning to wear one, we recommend layered clothing.
  • Any signage, materials, and equipment you need for your exhibit
  • A camera to take pictures of your booth for your next newsletter

 

 

  • Backpacks and large bags
  • Large flags and banners (except as noted)
  • Weapons, dangerous objects and illegal substances
  • Food and beverages (with review, samples sizes permissible)
  • Pets
  • Whistles, Artificial noise makers
  • Laser pointers
  • Umbrellas
  • Alcohol or smoking

A Mobile Spot is defined as any of the following:

  • Vehicle (self-propelled or towed) – car, truck, motorcycle
  • Mobile Lab or Simulator
  • Bus or Large Commercial Vehicle
  • Railed Vehicle – Train or Tram
  • Watercraft – Ship or Boat
  • Aircraft – planes, spacecraft
  • Containers – Shipping containers or designed displays that are over 5,000 lbs and require specialized equipment for placement.

*Please note: Trailers used to transport and move materials into the building that have no practical application to the display, CANNOT be placed in the building during the run of the event. Using a branded trailer as a backdrop for a display is not a practical application and will need to be removed from the show floor.

If you plan on bringing any of the above into the convention center, you will need to provide a full description on the Exhibitor Portal.

A substance is defined as any of the following:

  • Chemicals
  • Gases
  • Liquids (includes water)

If you plan on bringing any of the above into the convention center, you will need to provide a full description on the Risk Assessment form, located on the Exhibitor portal.

If a third party is delivering any of the above to the convention center, you will need to provide a full description on the Risk Assessment form, located on the Exhibitor portal. You will also need to specify the provider and the quantity ordered.

This will be a targeted move-in due to the size of the event.  Exhibitors are required to follow the target schedule based on the NSF of your booth and this schedule will be available when the GES Exhibitor Expresso Ordering Site is released.

The target schedule is critical to ensure the efficiency in servicing all exhibitors in and out of the building.  If you are not able to move in during your target time, you must contact GES and notify them so that arrangements can be made to prevent negative impact to exhibiting neighbors and the overall event.  Failure to notify GES may result in penalties applied to Material Handling billing for this event.

Inquiries and notifications can be directed to GES at 800-475-2098 – USA or 702-515-5970 – International. They can also be contacted via chat at http://www.ges.com/chat.

Exhibitors will have two options of shipping materials to the show:

Advanced warehouse – materials sent in ahead of the move-in date to be stored and delivered directly to their booth.  The advanced warehouse address and shipping deadline will be published when the GES Exhibitor Expresso Ordering Site is released.

Direct to Showsite by use of the Marshaling Yard – There is limited surface street access around the Walter E. Washington Convention Center and POVs (Personally Owned Vehicles) or Commercial Freight Carriers CANNOT come directly into the Convention Center.  They will need to first check into the Marshaling Yard prior to being dispatched over for unload.  Based on your target move – in day and time, it is recommended that you check into the yard 2 hours prior to your target time to keep within the schedule.  Any vehicles coming directly into the Convention Center will be turned away and directed back to the Marshaling Yard for check-in.  The address and hours for the marshaling yard will be available when the Exhibitor Ordering Site is released.

The Walter E. Washington Convention Center is a Union Facility and all materials received through the dock or not qualified as hand-carry will be subject to Material Handling Charges based on the overall weight of materials identified for your display booth.

The hand carry requirement for this purpose is any material that can be carried into the convention center by one person in one trip without the use of any equipment (cart, hand-dolly, or any wheeled platform).  Display pieces in rolling cases are excluded and are considered hand-carry as long as the one person, one trip qualification is followed.

There is a hand carry entrance on the corner of 9th and Mt Vernon. The hand carry requirement for this purpose is any material that can be carried into the convention center by one person in one trip without the use of any equipment (cart, hand-dolly, or any wheeled platform).  Display pieces in rolling cases are excluded and are considered hand-carry as long as the one person, one trip qualification is followed.

Expo halls will have security guards at the entrance during the move-in/out hours and exhibitors will be asked to show credentials. Expo halls will be locked overnight. However, if you have valuables, we recommend that you hire a private security firm specifically for your booths. Washington Convention Center, USASEF, CSI, and their agents are NOT liable for any lost or stolen items.

If you need to purchase additional security from CSI, you may access the ordering form through the GES Exhibitor Expresso Ordering Site.

Yes, every exhibitor is required to provide a Certificate of Insurance. This document can be uploaded on the Exhibitor Portal.

If you are unable to provide a Certificate of Insurance through your pre-existing insurance policy, you will be required to purchase a coverage plan through RainProtection.net.

We strongly recommend that you use public transportation!

Use http://www.wmata.com to plan your public transportation by metro or bus.

The closest Metro stop is Mt. Vernon Square/7th St-Convention Center, but you can also arrive and walk a block at Gallery Place/Chinatown.

No event parking is provided. Cost for public parking garages in downtown DC vary (approximately $25 per day). Be sure to check closing hours so that your vehicle is not locked in overnight, and be aware of vehicle height restrictions.

Click here to see Parking Lots Near the Walter E. Washington Convention Center. This list is not all-inclusive and you may find better parking on your way to these locations.

 

The USA Science & Engineering Festival has partnered with onPeak to provide you with affordable hotel options for your trip to Washington, DC.  Available only through the official hotel reservation page, rooms are limited and available on a first come, first served basis.

Click here to view the official hotel reservation page.