The fifth annual Tillsonburg Home and Garden Springfest brought local businesses together with people in the community interested in their home and garden-related businesses.
And that made for a very successful 2019 home and garden show.
“It went very well,” said Dev Chmarney, who with her husband Dave Chmarney, have run the past five Home and Garden Springfests at the Tillsonburg Community Centre.
Although attendance was down a little on Friday, April 12, traditionally the slowest of their three days, and Saturday, April 13, the Chmarneys were pleased with the show overall, especially on a rainy Sunday, April 14, which had higher attendance than last year.
“The nice day (Saturday)… people have other plans. It balanced out,” said Dev.
“Exhibitors were happy with the shorter hours Saturday,” said Dave.
This year’s Tillsonburg Home and Garden Springfest had 86 exhibitors, spreading out through both the Kinsmen Memorial and Colin Campbell Community Arenas taking up space for 100+ booths.
“We received a lot of good comments, a lot of feedback from the exhibitors that they got some credible leads,” said Dev. “They talked to a lot of people. The crowd that’s coming is very interested in what’s here. And we had a lot of positive comments from those that came.
“The Fairboard does our admissions and they had a lot of people say it was a great show. They found what they were looking for… very happy.”
“The food booth did a little healthier menu this year,” Dave noted. “Chili, soup, sandwiches…”
“And I think they had some fruit,” said Dev.
“They did, they had some apples,” Dave nodded.
“I think they said they went through eight crockpots of chili or soup.”
“The chili on Friday, you could smell it through the whole arena,” Dev smiled.
New exhibitors have joined the show over the years, but the Chmarneys also have a long list of 27 ‘original’ five-year exhibitors, who received a special anniversary rosette to display in their booth for the weekend.
“If we have the same exhibitors coming back, obviously they are getting business out of it… so to me that is a successful show. It’s more of a business show than an entertainment show.”
They also celebrated with the exhibitors offering them anniversary cake in their dressing-room headquarters, which was decorated with a banner that included a photo of each and every exhibitor over the previous years.
“The exhibitors really appreciated that and they were interested to see the variety that we’ve had.”
The exhibitors also appreciated warm air flowing into the Colin Campbell Community Arena, which had a wooden floor over the ice.
“Yes, the heater made a difference,” said Dave.
“A significant difference in the temperature,” Dev nodded. “It was cool (Sunday), but it was cool outside, so we knew it would be a little harder to get the heat up where it was the previous couple of days.”
“When we came in, it would be 8.5 degrees C,” said Dave, “and it would get up to 19 degrees.”
Sunday night, the arenas had cleared out of people, but many booths still had to be emptied by noon on Monday.
“The tear down goes much quicker than setup,” said Dave.
“We have to start picking up the (Community Arena) floor because we have to be out by Monday night,” said Dev.