As the COVID-19 pandemic continues to disrupt our lives and enterprises, IWF 2020 and the global woodworking industry it serves are not immune to such intrusion. That inescapable reality lies at the heart of the difficult decision to cancel this year’s event.
This unavoidable action comes only after long, intense and exhaustive study and consideration by the IWF show management team working in constant collaboration with the IWF 2020 Management Committee, whose members represent the Wood Machinery Manufacturers of America and the Woodworking Machinery Industry Association.
The decision to cancel North America’s oldest and largest woodworking event could not and did not come easily. At the same time, the conditions and circumstances brought about by the COVID-19 pandemic–including accompanying travel restrictions and federal, state and local governmental regulations–have made it impossible to stage IWF 2020 without endangering the health and safety of all exhibitors, attendees and the Atlanta community at large.
From the very outset of the COVID-19 pandemic, IWF has monitored and carefully considered its progress as a factor in show planning. It is now clear that hosting the show with tens of thousands of attendees in an indoor space such as the Georgia World Congress Center cannot occur without amplifying the transmission of COVID-19. That risk is absolutely unacceptable.
While no one can be happy with this outcome, we all can look toward the promise of a new, brighter future and all the opportunities IWF 2022 will bring. As we anticipate that future, always know that IWF will continue to move on course in this mission: For the entire woodworking community and across the industry landscape, IWF is where the woodworking business does business. That mission will never change.