Tuesday, July 22, 2014

DEMA Launches Phase II of Diving Consumer Behavior Research Project

**Association Encourages Industry to Share Survey with Divers Internationally and in the US **

DEMA has launched an online diving consumer behavioral survey to complement the objective diving consumer data on diver demographics and psychographics published in early 2014.  DEMA is asking all industry professionals to share a link to the survey with their end-user customers so that as many divers as possible can contribute to the data.
With DEMA’s completion of its Phase I research and the publishing of aggregate data from five different diving activities ((1) Who is the Open Water Diver, (2) Who is the Diver Buying Equipment (hard goods), (3) Who is the Continuing Education Diver,  (4) Who is the Diver Traveling to a Resort and (5) Who is the Liveaboard Diver), the information DEMA is now seeking will reveal consumer buying behavior and dive participation, making it possible to learn more about the recent activities of divers including diver retention, equipment purchasing preferences and more.  
To maintain the anonymity of customer records, DEMA is again using a third party administrator to distribute the survey links and gather the responses. To partake, a business can inquire with DEMA who will direct the third party administrator to provide a link unique to their web-based survey. The survey can then be distributed to as many end-users as possible via social media and e-mail. It’s designed for completion by certified divers living both inside and outside the US, and will take about 15 minutes to complete. The survey will be live until August 15, 2014 and all participants who complete the survey will be entered into a drawing for one of a number of $100 gift cards that can be redeemed at a local participating dive center.
“Understanding more about these behavioral activities requires direct contact with consumers using a web-based server,” commented Tom Ingram, Executive Director of DEMA. ‘The information we receive from the Phase II survey will help us understand how often the participants are diving, to where they travel, and what level of training they have received. We will need the Industry’s full cooperation to achieve our goals. For businesses that agree to take part, the results of their individual survey will be provided back to them.  The results will also be aggregated with other consumer data for a more complete picture of diver behavior.”
Dive Industry stakeholders are encouraged to participate by distributing the survey to their customers to learn more about their buying behaviors and diving habits. Interested businesses should contact DEMA at research@dema.org. They will receive a unique survey link that will collect data from those to whom they directly distribute their survey, and after the survey closing date, the results from their survey data.

Tuesday, July 15, 2014

DEMA Show’s Official Host Hotel is Now Westgate Las Vegas Resort & Casino

** Hotel’s Rebranding Will Not Affect DEMA Show’s Hotel Block Benefits or Discounted Room Rates **
DEMA’s official host hotel for DEMA Show 2014, formerly known as the Las Vegas Hotel and the Las Vegas Hilton, has announced it is under new ownership and has been renamed as the Westgate Las Vegas Resort and Casino. Westgate Las Vegas Resort and Casino is conveniently located adjacent to the North Hall of the Las Vegas Convention Center – home to DEMA Show 2014.
“DEMA would like to assure all Show Attendees and Exhibitors that the rebranding of the hotel will not affect the exclusive savings and benefits they will receive when booking their reservations in the official DEMA Show hotel block,” commented Tom Ingram, Executive Director of DEMA. “Those who book their rooms in the official hotel block will still receive rates, savings, and special perks including complimentary shuttle bus access to and from DEMA Show.”
DEMA Show registrants who are planning to arrive early into Las Vegas, or stay after the Show concludes have access to a special Early Bird Discount on “pre” and “post” show dates when they book their rooms in the official DEMA Show block by August 11, 2014. Those special discounted rates are based on availability and are as follows:
  •  $49 Single/Double for the following nights:  November 13-17 and 23-25, 2014**
  • $95 Single/Double for the following nights: November 11-22, 2014**
**Must be booked by August 11, 2014 in order to receive this special discounted rate and are based upon availability.  

Between now and August 11th, book your stay within the Official Room Block at the Westgate Las Vegas Resort and Casino and your name will be entered into a drawing for a chance to win an upgrade to a premium Park Avenue one bedroom suite plus a round trip limo transfer from McCarran International Airport. You must make your reservation before 6:00 PM on August 11th. In addition, you will receive the early bird sleeping room rates. The winner of the luxury suite upgrade will be notified on August 12th.

The Westgate Las Vegas Resort and Casino is a landmark property that, at one time, was one of the largest hotels in the world and was home to such legendary greats as Elvis Presley and Liberace during Vegas’ Golden Age. The hotel is located just one block off the world-famous Las Vegas Strip, and is one of seven stations on the Las Vegas Monorail. It features a 95,000 square foot casino with a wide array of table games and the hottest slot machines on the market, 200,000 square feet of meeting and convention space, incredible restaurants, endless entertainment, a spa and fitness center, expansive pool with luxurious cabanas, access to golf at the exclusive Las Vegas Country Club, and the world’s largest race and sports SuperBook®.
To book your DEMA Show hotel reservation visit http://ow.ly/yXOJs

Wednesday, July 9, 2014

Patrick Hammer and Alese & Mort Pechter to Receive DEMA’s 2014 Reaching Out Award

Honorees to be Recognized at the Motown-themed 2014 DEMA Awards Party Held at Hard Rock Hotel’s State of the Art Rock Venue, The Joint in Las Vegas, NV

The Dive Industry will take a trip back to Hitsville U.S.A. at the 26th annual presentation of the prestigious Reaching Out Awards on November 21, 2014, where there "Ain't No Mountain High Enough" to stop us from celebrating the extraordinary careers of Patrick Hammer and Alese & Mort Pechter, recipients of the 2014 DEMA Reaching Out Award (ROA). These newest additions to DEMA’s Hall of Fame will be honored at this year’s DEMA Awards Party taking place at the Hard Rock Hotel’s premiere event and music venue, The Joint. First presented in 1989, the ROA honors leaders in the diving community whose significant contributions to the sport have elevated the industry on all levels. This year’s recipients will be joining an extraordinary list of distinguished past Honorees.

Patrick Hammer first became a diving instructor in the early seventies, forming a dive club with over 150 members. He opened his first dive store in 1974 and eventually opened a total of five stores in Illinois, Florida and Georgia during the period from 1974-1982.   During the mid 1970’s, the Chicago Fire Department approached Hammer for advice on how to do a proper search and recovery. Since, Hammer has worked with several fire departments and was instrumental in developing safety procedures on proper search and body recovery techniques. Over the years he has gone on to write more than 40 additional specialty diving programs.

Pat has operated the Our World Underwater consumer show since the late 1980s, and during that time the show has grown to become the largest consumer dive event in the Midwest. 

In addition to providing opportunities for divers from all over the world to learn more about diving, Pat has seen to it that Our World Underwater also provides opportunities for kids to become engaged in recreational diving and the diving environment, and even puts its money toward various scientific efforts through the non-profit Tim Early Foundation, which is largely funded by OWU.  The key purposes of grants provided through the Tim Early Foundation are to further the knowledge and understanding of the local Midwestern underwater environment, support Midwest aquatic preservation programs in high schools and colleges, fund research of Lake Michigan shipwrecks to preserve the history and historical contributions made to the Midwestern states by the maritime shipping industry, and to implement “Micro Gravity” programs designed to replicate N.A.S.A. space camps for local youth to experience zero-gravity while underwater. More than 3,000 school-aged children have reaped the benefits of this Foundation. He also cofounded the Ralph Erickson Foundation whose goal has been to help diving enthusiasts in underprivileged areas start their scuba career through a grant program that helps provide access to equipment and training. Through this foundation, Pat has been instrumental in changing the lives of many, mostly underprivileged youth and young adults, in multiple locations in the Caribbean.

Pat is the author of two skin diving manuals, two operations and resort training manuals, numerous articles and a contributor to major worldwide diver training programs.

Hammer has served the Industry by serving on a number of Boards including the PADI Retail Association Board, Coral Reef Alliance Board, Aqua Lung Advisory Board and DEMA Board of Directors.

Alese & Mort Pechter have traveled the globe and spent years documenting their underwater experiences, photographing, displaying their photographs, writing and lecturing, and promoting the world of SCUBA. Throughout their career, they have provided first-hand information and photographs to scientists and writers, as well as media personal, making it possible to promote the underwater world and shift the image of the sport from an elite, male oriented activity to a family-oriented recreational sport for all levels. Long before it was fashionable to promote diving in a way that was attractive to a younger market, the Pechters were paving the way for the industry to reach these young would-be divers.

The Pechters have dedicated thousands of hours to teaching children about the underwater world. They entertained, visiting school children with adult groups to promote ocean conservation. The Pechters’ children’s book, What’s In The Deep, has received public and critical acclaim and was chosen as a Public Broadcasting System Reading Rainbow selection. It was the first ocean-oriented book direct toward young children using actual photographs of the underwater world.

During their careers, Alese and Mort contributed to many publication in the diving industry; Underwater USA, Caribbean Travel & Life, Dive Training, Sport Diver, and more. They were elected Fellow National members in the prestigious Explorers Club for their contribution to scientific knowledge in the field of geographical exploration. They are life members of the National Marine Educators Association, the Historical Divers Association and are also members of the Oceanography Society. Alese was elected as a charter member of the internationally-recognized Women Divers Hall of Fame. They were active founding members of the Long Island Science Museum having carried the title of Administrative Vice President of the museum for several years.

Among their many awards, the Pechters were honored by the United Nations Environment Program and recognized by the US Navy as Honorary Deep Seas Divers. They were also honored by the South Florida Police Search & Rescue Teams, were selected as the Photojournalists of the Year in 1996, and were awarded the 2003 NOGI for Distinguished Service.

DEMA congratulates Patrick Hammer and Alese & Mort Pechter for their exemplary, life-long service to our Industry.

Further details about the 2014 DEMA Awards Party are available on the DEMA Show website where interested parties can purchase individual tickets from the DEMA Show registration system.  Large groups can reserve VIP tables of eight by contacting Colleen Vasquez at cvasquez@dema.org or (858) 616-6408 x106.  Unique sponsorship opportunities are also available.

Tuesday, July 1, 2014

Dive Safety PSA & Poster Made Available for Use Prior to Florida Lobster Mini-Season

**DEMA and Divers Alert Network (DAN) Provide Safety Tips for Florida’s Lobster Mini-Season July 30-31, 2014**
As the 2014 Florida Lobster Mini-Season approaches, DEMA has updated their Lobster Mini-Season poster and is circulating their30-second PSA in an effort to increase diver safety.  Both the poster and PSA remind divers to be prepared for the upcoming mini-season. DEMA Members are encouraged to print the Lobster Mini-Season poster and to display it in the store, distribute it to their customers, and share it electronically with their own online community. Both the poster and PSA are part of DEMA’s ongoing campaign to encourage divers to refresh their training and maintain their equipment prior to getting back in the water.   
“The purpose of the Lobster Season PSA is to encourage divers to prepare in advance for the Lobster Mini-Season and to remind them to adhere to necessary safety measures, including diving with a buddy when hunting for lobsters,” commented Tom Ingram, Executive Director of DEMA. “We hope an increased awareness of the recommended safety procedures will help to keep diving safe for everyone during this 2014 mini-season.”
The 30-second PSA was produced by DEMA in partnership with Divers Alert Network. It was created to encourage divers to visit their local dive center to update their dive equipment and to refresh and upgrade their dive training.
In addition to being made available to the Industry for download and sharing, the poster and PSA will be promoted as a social media campaign via DEMABe A Diver, and DiveCaching Twitter & Facebook pages prior to and during the Lobster Mini-Season, as well as on social media sites of affiliated organizations. The poster is now available to be viewed, shared and downloaded and the PSA can be viewed and shared via the Be A Diver YouTube channel. All divers and Industry Professionals are encouraged to share the PSA with their social media friends and followers and their local diving community to spread this important message. DEMA Members can download and print the poster for their customers and stores.