Business Expo huge success for many

Published 10:54 am Wednesday, November 25, 2015

Many community members attended the Franklin-Southampton Area Chamber of Commerce Business Expo on Thursday night. -- SUBMITTED

Many community members attended the Franklin-Southampton Area Chamber of Commerce Business Expo on Thursday night. — SUBMITTED

The 22nd Annual Franklin-Southampton Area Chamber of Commerce Business Expo was a success for not only the local business owners, but also for the community members, as many of them were able to do some shopping and win prizes. The Expo took place at the Regional Workforce Center of Paul D. Camp Community College on Thursday night.

“We were delighted with the huge crowd and several of the vendors said it was the best Expo yet,” Executive Director of the Franklin-Southampton Area Chamber of Commerce Teresa Beale said.

The Expo gave the local business owners a chance to highlight some of their products and services to the community members. Over 500 people attended.

There were over 45 businesses and vendors at the event, including Norfolk International Airport which had setup an interactive booth. They gave out prizes to each person who participated in the game they had assembled.

The airport also donated the grand prize for the occasion.

“Norfolk International Airport generously provided our grand prize, a $500 travel certificate for use on any airline serving ORF. Charles Braden and Susan Long with Norfolk International Airport joined chamber president, Kim Williams, on stage to award this to winner Juanita Richards, Richwood Graphics,” Beale added.

Many of the businesses were sampling out food at their booths. Farm Fresh sampled snacks and also had wine tasting. Don Panchos gave out mini taco salads. Bojangles gave out mini-BoBerry Biscuits. Huddle House samples of its peach and strawberry teas.

Almost all of the businesses gave away items with their logos on them. The popular items included koozies, pens, stress ball, stickers, magnets and more.

Many of the businesses also had raffles that included things like gift cards, coolers and bags.

Small Business Saturday was discussed at the expo, as well as the new Franklin-Southampton tourism website,

Real Country 101.7 broadcasted the different businesses and what they had to offer over the radio.

The winners of the different contests going on at the expo for the featured businesses were announced on stage near the end of the night. These winners included: Most Creative: Cofield’s Locksmith; Most Informative: Personal Touch Home Care; Most Interactive: Don Pancho’s Cantina; Best Use of Space: Mackan’s Office Supply and Printing; and People’s Choice: Don Pancho’s Cantina.

Many sponsors helped the chamber put on this event. Three of the biggest sponsors were Prime Media Productions, Real Country 101.7 and Southampton Memorial Hospital.

“We love presenting this event as it gives the Chamber the opportunity to showcase the variety of local businesses to the entire community. The strong support of many sponsors enables us to host this community event. The Expo wouldn’t be possible without them,” Beale continued. “Vendors enjoy connecting with each other and the general public to update them about their products and services. Everyone had a great time visiting, eating and shopping. There was such a positive vibe in the room. The Franklin-Southampton Area business community is fantastic.”