After a 4-year hiatus, we have begun attending regular trade shows and dog shows to try to promote our business in the East Valley.
In January, we attended our first Phoenix event, the Doggie Street Festival, which was a nice turnout on a gorgeous day. But not until the fall have we decided to get back into full swing with doing shows. In August, we did the Dog Fun Festival at the Westworld Equestrian Arena in Scottsdale. In September, we attended the Mesa Home Show, a new home and garden show in its first year.
Then just a couple weeks ago, we rented a booth at the largest (and most expensive) show we’ve done yet: the Maricopa County October Home Show (they do about 5 or 6 year-round). I’m sorry to say we did not sell enough to break even, and went home about $600 poorer. But we made several new contacts, got a list of potential shows by talking with other vendors, and received some good ideas for broadening our product line. The “gain” from doing a show, sometimes, isn’t money. I also did learn, in talking with a few veteran vendors, that attendance this time was significantly down from its usual.
We have a busy lineup this fall/winter, so here it is:
- Sat Oct 28: Foothills Community Market (Tucson) from 10-3
- Sun Oct 29: Ahwatukee Dog Show (Ahwatukee) from 9-12
- Sat/Sun Nov 4-5: OTHS Craft Fair (O’Fallon IL) from 9-5. James is flying back to Illinois, which he looks forward to every year because he brings one of the girls with him. This year, it’s Eva’s turn. She’ll miss 8 days of preschool.
- Sat/Sun Nov 11-12: EHS Craft Fair (Edwardsville IL) from 9-4
- Sat Nov 11: Holiday Bliss Boutique (Power Ranch Barn) from 9-2. Amanda will be doing this weekend’s events with Brielle and Haleigh, while James and Eva are still in Illinois.
- Sun Nov 12: Pup Festival (AZ Boardwalk) from 10-3
- Sat Nov 18: Woofstock (Tumbleweed Park) from 9-1
- Fri/Sat/Sun Nov 24-26: TBD*
- Sat Dec 9: Shop with Your Pet (Scottsdale Quarter) from 12-3
- Fri/Sat/Sun Jan 5-7: TBD*
- Fri/Sat/Sun Jan 12-14: TBD
- Sat Jan 27: Doggie Street Festival (Phoenix) from 10-3
For a few marked with (*), we have either applied or are still deciding if our schedule will allow. I will update this blog when these are confirmed.