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The atmosphere was celebratory as event organizers gathered for a ceremonial ribbon cutting to open the show floor on day 1.

A familiar sight greeted attendees for the last time as they entered the distinctive Jacob Javits Center.

Crowds marched in as soon as the doors opened making for a lively first day.

The INVISION team was out in full force! From left to right: Pete Sienkiewicz, Matthijs Braakman, Dee Carroll, Sheena Taff, and Brett Moore. Better Vision editor Carol Gilhawley not shown.

ClearVision celebrated its 75th anniversary this year with a festive booth.

Traffic was strong in many booths, here Aspex.

Cherry Optical sported a lot of cheery reds.

Morel kept the red trend going.

Marcolin leaned into its signature dark blue as one of the show floor’s rear anchor booths.

All the booths sought to grab the attention of attendees and the EssilorLuxottica booth delivered.

As did the folks at VSP.

The evenings were full of events, like the “Reframing the Conversation” panel and showcase at Soho Works by Soho House hosted by the EYƎCONS Agency. The 120 people in attendance listened to (L-R) Anna-Karin Karlsson, founder of Anna-Karin Karlsson Eyewear; moderator Tarrence Lackran, founder and CEO of EYƎCONS Agency; Selima Salaun, founder and creative director of Selima Optique; and Coco and Breezy Dotson, founders of Coco and Breezy Eyewear, discuss the latest trends, technological advancements, and creative inspirations in the ever-evolving world of eyewear.

The Optical Women’s Association (OWA) also hosted their annual Stars, Sips, & Scholarships Networking Event, part of a series of events to celebrate their 2024 OWA award recipients — Lifetime Achievement Award honoree Marge Axelrad (Vision Monday), Pleiades Award honoree Rebecca Giefer (Modo), Pyxis Award honoree Trudi Charest (Marketing4ecps), and Emerging Leader Award honoree Reagan Colpitts (Safilo) — as well as their 2023 OWA Leadership Scholarship recipients.

The Vision Council welcomed members to their Member Reception at the Castell Rooftop Lounge at AC Hotel New York Times Square.

The first night of the show also saw the Vision Expo East Opening Night Party with Bad Habits “The EyeDocs of Rock” playing on the big stage at t Sony Hall at The Paramount Hotel Times Square.

The Italian Trade Agency had its own section of the floor to showcase their Extraordinary Italian Eyewear featuring handcrafted Italian made eyewear from nearly 20 of Italy’s finest independent eyewear brands. 

Booth activations abounded. Jazz trumpet player and composer Marquis Hill performed at the Europa booth.

L’Amy America hosted the Two Blind Brothers in conjunction with the launch of their eyewear collection: (l-r) Bryan Manning, INVISION’s Dee Carroll, and Bradford Manning.

Oakley athlete JR Smith (l), a former NBA player, visited the Oakley area of the EssilorLuxottica booth to do meet-and-greets, take photos, and answer questions, which he is doing here with Defocus Media’s Dr. Darryl Glover.

Other notable booth appearances included INVISION’s own Pete Sienkiewicz spotted with PECCA’s Stephanie Lucas in the company’s booth.

Rapper Jim Jones hung out in the Vintage Frame Co. booth.

And Safilo had an enviable position tucked away on the terrace with a bird’s eye view of the entire show floor.

The Main Stage offered compelling programing like a daily Flaunt the Frame fashion show, sponsored by IMAGINEM, which provided an unfiltered view of the most cutting-edge designs in trending eyewear. The fashion shows highlighted independent eyewear designs with collections from ClearVision, Morel, MODO, OGI, WestGroupe, Jonas Paul, Spectacle Eyeworks, Sospiri, Variation Design and ic! Berlin, on some familiar industry faces.

The National Federation of Opticianry Schools hosted their Annual College Bowl and Devyn Shea from The Benjamin Franklin Cummings Institute of Technology’s opticianry program in Massachusetts won first place and $1000.

The second annual NOW by Vision Expo awarded nine exciting awards. “Eyewear, the Ultimate Accessory” Award presented by the Accessories Council, went to Selima Optique, and independent eyewear brand Vysen took home the People’s Choice Award. Other winners included: Best Optical Style of 2024 by a Licensed brand – Swarovski by EssilorLuxottica; Best Optical Style of 2024 by an Independent brand – Pussy Galore by Spectacle Eyeworks; Best Sunglass Style of 2024 by a Licensed brand – Longchamp by Marchon; Best Sunglass Style of 2024 by an Independent brand – Nina Mur; Best Sustainable Style of 2024 – 3D by MODO; New Emerging Brand / Designer – LAPIMA; Optical Lifetime Achievement Award – Zyloware – Chris Shyer and Jamie Shyer.

Finally, the main stage also featured a talk and performance from Grammy-Award nominated singer/songwriter Sophie B. Hawkins.

End of a VEE Era

End of a VEE Era

The atmosphere was celebratory as event organizers gathered for a ceremonial ribbon cutting to open the show floor on day 1.