Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Shop 'Til you Drop Sale, Topeks KS, 11/27/2010

In theory this show sounded like a great idea. The black Friday weekend is a huge shopping weekend, and there is a movement to make that Saturday "Small Business Saturday" so what a great way to support small business by going to a craft fair! The location on this show was in a ballroom inside a Holiday Inn right off the freeway. There was a big sign standing on the ground telling passers by of the sale on Saturday. Patty Pugh who is the event coordinator for KS- Events- Fair was in charge of this event and advertised this event as going out with all the Black Friday ads and led everyone to believe this was going to be a huge event. On top of the booth fee each booth was required to donate a door prize.
Now for reality. A hotel ballroom might be good for a wedding reception, but not for a craft show. The hotel guests were basically the only people that showed up. Although the hotel was on the side of the freeway there weren't signs right where you got off to direct people to the hotel. Also, I think whatever effort Patty made to get this advertised, she exaggerated to make this show seem bigger than it was. Also, right now there is no way that small business can compete with large mass merchandisers. So perhaps that major shopping weekend should be left to the "big boys."
Patty also is running a show on Dec. 11 in Topeka and the locals told me they had heard a lot of advertising for that show, but not for Nov. 27.
Now I know sales can't dictate how successful a show is in most cases, but I do believe if it is b ad for the majority of people that can be a dictator. In this shows case, it was horrible for everyone! Almost everyone didn't even sell enough to cover their booth fee ( $75 for non-commercial, $150 for commercial) I was lucky enough to have a lady who runs a daycare LOVE my I spy bags enough to buy one for each of her daycare kids. She did ask for a big discount for buying in bulk (12 bags) so I hardly made any money on the deal, but I was glad to help her, loved her enthusiasm for my bags and wanted to get my bags out to more people. I may have been the only one who covered my booth fee and that's only because I shared a booth with my friend!

Overall this show was a HUGE waste of time and money. Luckily my family and I had turned it into vacation and visited a few sites and had fun staying at the hotel. With low sales, and low customers this was a bust. In my opinion when Patty saw that this was going downhill fast (it was obvious!) she should have at least given us back our door prizes so not to have lost that money. All the vendors were very upset, and I think Patty could sense the tension so she left before the show was even over. Now just because this was a bust, doesn't mean every show she does is a bust, but this experience was enough to show that she doesn't care a smidgen for the vendors she is supposed to be helping, so I'm done with her. I will not work with Patty Pugh and KS-Events-Fairs ever again! I give this show 1 out of 5 stars!

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