NNSL Photo/Graphic

Canadian North

Home page text size buttonsbigger textsmall textText size Email this articleE-mail this page

Exhibitors 'step up game' at Spring Trade Show
Chamber of commerce pleased with "fantastic" turnout for 31st annual event

Thandiwe Vela
Northern News Services
Published Tuesday, May 14, 2013

Parking lots around the Multiplex overflowed throughout the weekend, as the annual Spring Trade Show returned to much fanfare.

NNSL photo/graphic

Yellowknife Chamber of Commerce president Jason McEvoy dropped by to chat with Rebecca Birch, at her Rebecca's Flowers booth at the Spring Trade Show inside the Multiplex last Sunday. - Thandiwe Vela/NNSL photo

The show's 160 exhibitor booths were sold out and traffic was steady at the Yellowknife Chamber of Commerce event, which featured new and established businesses, government agencies, a food court and children's entertainment. Organizers said attendance met or surpassed last year's trade show, which saw upwards of 8,000 people visit the two-day extravaganza.

"Traffic has been fantastic," chamber president Jason McEvoy said on Sunday afternoon, as many people took shelter inside from the day-long drizzle for the Mother's Day weekend event.

Rebecca Birch, whose business Rebecca's Flowers has been an exhibitor at the Spring Trade Show every year for the past seven shows, said attendance this year was "the best by far.

"I think to us it just increases every year," she said.

Some vendors said Sunday was busier than Saturday.

"It picked up a lot," said Colleen Tsikira, owner of DME Driving School on Sunday afternoon.

"It's nice to see people shop locally and that's what this trade show does. It brings people from all different communities and shows them what Yellowknife has to offer."

The company's newest vehicle on display inside the arena drew a lot of interest as prospective students took turns sitting down in the driver's seat.

"The car itself has sold a lot more students into driving," Tsikira said.

Stuart Matheson, whose company Dominion Lending Services debuted at this year's show, said exhibitors stepped up their game this year.

"I've helped out with some of the other booths previous years so I know exactly what to expect out of the trade show," he said. "It's one of the highlights of the year in Yellowknife and I felt like this year everybody seems to have upped their game a little bit. There's high-quality booths. People like Property Guys even people like the RCMP, Northwestel, they've got some really nice signage up. They're really visible and noticeable."

Just Fitness, a Yk gym business which was started three years ago, was another new exhibitor this year. The owners decided to participate in the event "to get our name out there," said owner Scott Thomson.

"It's our first time here and it's got lots of exposure for us," he said.

Jerrie's Delivery Services owner Edward Dithurbide was also a first-time exhibitor and told Yellowknifer before the show that the event was a "huge deal" for the new business.

"It surpassed my expectations," he said on Sunday, estimating he gave out about 1,000

business cards.

The 2013 Force One Annual Boat Show also took place this weekend on Old Airport Rd..

Jason Clarke, general manager of Force One said the event went "great.

"We had lots of traffic through here on the weekend. It was nice to see everybody out and about and getting in the mood for boating," Clarke said.

E-mailWe welcome your opinions. Click here to e-mail a letter to the editor.