Sexapalooza, the mega sex trade expo, made its annual appearance in Canada’s capital city this weekend.
As usually, the attendance was through the roof. For a sleepy little national capital (population 700,000) with a reputation for buttoned down bureaucrats and university academics, it is amazing that the city seems to regularly turn out tens of thousands of attendees to see the sex toys, burlesque dancers and BDSM dungeons. But they did it again.
Last year, I noted that while Ottawa gets an A+ for attendance it gets an F for effort. I won’t rehash this (check out my blog on this last year: https://wordpress.com/post/48309366/3410/ , but Ottawa once again showed up, en masse, in their track pants and sweatshirts creating perhaps the unsexiest vibe possible for a room full of lingerie, sex toy and erotic massage demonstrations.
What was notable this year? How much people buy. I was dumbstruck at the number of people I saw walking out with, literally, 1,000s of dollars worth of sexy products.
I would love to see stats on the average purchase per attendee at sex shows. I have been to many types of trade shows – the spring gardening show, the winter travel show, craft shows….. What I usually see is 90% of the people just walking around and browsing at booths… but limited purchasing. At Sexapalooza, virtually everyone had a bag of swag… or multiple bags.
One group of 4 women sitting next us in the lounge on our way out had 17 dildos and vibrators between them. One, who giggled to her friends that she had never tried a sex toy before, had 5.
My theory is that most people don’t go to sex shops. They think they’re too dirty or they would feel conspicuous being there. But Sexapalooza has become mainstream and this is their one and only opportunity to indulge their kink. And do they ever indulge.
So, for everyone at Sexapalooza Ottawa… you still looked a little ghetto for a sexy night, but full credit to you all for diving with both feet into the deep end. By Sunday night in Ottawa there were thousands of new tricks and toys debuting in bedrooms, kitchen table and newly minted dungeons across the cities.
Well done Ottawa.