Welcome to the newly reimagined schedule of World Dairy Expo

Wisconsin State Farmer
World Dairy Expo will be held from Oct. 2-7, 2022, at the Alliant Energy Center in Madison, Wis.

Beginning this fall, World Dairy Expo will be held Sunday through Friday, Oct. 2-7 while remaining at its home in Madison, Wisconsin, the Alliant Energy Center. World Dairy Expo will officially start with youth activities and contests on Sunday. The Dairy Cattle Show will begin on Monday, and the Trade Show will kick off on Tuesday. The event that serves as the meeting place of the global dairy industry will conclude on Friday night with the naming of the Supreme Champion after a week of competition, commerce, education and networking.

Why was this schedule change made?

Simply, this change was made for the long-term health and sustainability of World Dairy Expo. Expo’s strength is in the sum of its parts and the new event schedule is filled with compromises and wins for all parties.

The Dairy Cattle Show needs five full days for proper exhibition, but for years, Trade Show exhibitors have been requesting a shorter show to better align with trade show industry standards of two to three day events. Add in time and space for youth contests, education and networking and the puzzle gets complicated quickly.

A group of Expo leaders looked at the constraints from every angle and for the first time, found a solution to these chronic challenges. 

Why eliminate Saturday?

Regardless of how full the Coliseum looks during the Holstein cow classes or the Parade of Champions, Saturday is not a strongly attended day of World Dairy Expo. With Saturday’s lower attendance, it was a clear choice to eliminate over Tuesday.

When evaluating the feasibility of this overall change, it was determined that the event needed to simultaneously conclude but could still thrive with staggered starts for event components. This was based on safety concerns for attendees and exhibitors along with the awareness of the state of the grounds after any portion of exhibitors move-out. The atmosphere left behind would not be welcoming or safe for those who come expecting a world-class event. 

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Schedule impacts

Dairy Cattle Show—The Dairy Cattle Show will maintain its historical five days of Showring exhibition but shift to a Monday through Friday schedule. This movement in days also comes with a new breed show schedule and annual rotation. Move-in for dairy cattle exhibitors will begin with early arrivals on Wednesday and open up to all on Thursday. Start times have also been adjusted for breed shows to address exhibition space in the Showring. 

Trade Show—Trade Show hours will be Tuesday – Thursday, 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. and Friday, 9:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.

Education—Educational programs held at World Dairy Expo in 2021 will return, but with a new schedule. Hosted Tuesday – Friday, there will be one Virtual Farm Tour, Expo Seminar, Expo en Español and Tanbark Talk per day. Additional programs include Knowledge Nook Sessions, Dairy Forage Seminars, FFA Seminars and industry hosted events.  

Youth Contests—The new six-day event schedule gives national and international youth contests a formal place in the World Dairy Expo schedule. Slated for Sunday, the Youth Showmanship Contest, Youth Fitting Contest and Youth Dairy Cattle Judging Contests will officially be the opening events of WDE. The Central National FFA contests and events will continue to be held on Tuesday.