Gary Howard of Gil's Carpet, Martinez, Calif., will travel to Surfaces in first class style courtesy of a new program aimed at encouraging more participation among distributors. Still up for grabs is a $25,000 prize for the distributor that signs up the most attendees.

Howard was selected in a random drawing of retailers who were registered for the show by a distributor. The store's distributor, Butler-Johnson Corp. of San Jose, Calif., was one of 11 distributors that agreed to help retailers sign up to attend the show set for Jan. 26-28 at the Sands Expo & Convention Center in Las Vegas.

In addition to two first class roundtrip airline tickets to Las Vegas, Howard also receives hotel suite accommodations during the show and limousine transfers to and from the airport. He will also receive two tickets to Mystère, which has been honored five times as the "Best Production Show" by the Las Vegas Review-Journal.

"We have attended Surfaces for the past 10 years or so," said Howard, "and this is, by far, the best flooring show to attend. Thank you very much for making this the best show ever!"

"We are very happy that one of Butler-Johnson's customers will be attending Surfaces in style," said Clay Covington, general sales manager, Butler-Johnson. "We look forward to Surfaces every year. It continues to be ‘the' event for our industry; for both viewing new products and in educational conferences. We encourage all of our customers to attend."

Companies participating in the Surfaces 2005 Distributor Program are: