Once again, the Atlantic City (N.J.) Convention Center will transform into “the place to be” for pool and spa professionals in January. The Northeast Spa and Pool Association’s (NESPA) The Pool & Spa Show takes place Jan. 28-30, kicking off the 2020 pool season with three days of industry-specific business training and more than 400 exhibitors and vendors showcasing the industry’s latest products.

More than 11,000 industry professionals are expected to attend the show, and increasingly more companies are recognizing the benefits of bringing their entire team, says Show Manager Trish McCormick. “In addition to getting your preseason training done and checking out new products, The Pool & Spa Show is the perfect way to get your full staff excited and on the same page for the upcoming season.”

Each year, show organizers build on programs and add new ones to equip pool and spa professionals for the upcoming pool season and beyond, says McCormick. Attendees will have the opportunity to experience all aspects of the industry and connect with familiar faces and new friends. Here’s what to look forward to this year.

The Wall

Located on the show floor, The Training Wall provides 2,500 square feet of free learning space for attendees to explore and build their skills and confidence through hands-on learning opportunities. New for 2020, get hands-on with all aspects of heater installation, maintenance and troubleshooting to minimize headaches and maximize profits for your company. Also added is an improved construction design demonstration for eliminating pool deck settling around new and renovated vinyl liner projects. The goal of the demo is to help reduce callbacks by ensuring installs are high-quality and done right the first time.

Admission to the exhibit hall is free for industry members.


Learning opportunities abound at the show, with more than 100 business and technical courses — including six offered in Spanish — in the 2020 lineup. New courses include:

Water chemistry: A staple topic of the education conference, several courses are offered covering everything from basic chemistry to solving unique chemistry mysteries. New this year is a full-day course, Comprehensive Water Chemistry for Residential Pools, that gives an in-depth look at all aspects of water chemistry. Designed with the seasoned staffer in mind, this is a must-attend class for any service technician ready to take their skills up a few notches, says Pat Cava, the show’s education director.

Workforce challenges: For several years, NESPA has been addressing labor challenges in the industry by including employment-focused seminars for owners and managers. This year’s lineup includes a new full-day course, Employees: How to Improve Productivity, Performance & Retention. The interactive session will look at employment concerns from every angle, concentrating on actionable solutions companies can implement immediately.

For Spanish speakers: The popular Rookie to All-Star: Pool Service Fundamentals course is now offered in a Spanish-language format, containing all the same content as the original course.


“We offer all levels of certifications,” says Cava. “The Pool & Spa Show is really the destination for professionals to earn much-needed certifications to comply with licensing requirements and make their businesses stand out from the competition.”

Cava encourages attendees to register early for certification courses. “With new licensing requirements in place in New Jersey, now is the time to register as these classes are rarely available for onsite registration due to high demand.”

Party like it’s 2020

For the first time, NESPA will showcase the winners of its Outstanding Achievement Awards at the 2020 Welcome Party. Partygoers can enjoy live music, food and drinks (did we mention beer pong and a mechanical bull?) while getting inspired by the top builders and service companies in the industry. This sell-out event typically draws a crowd of 2,000.