The simple slogan of “local first” will come alive Thursday at the Carson Valley Chamber of Commerce’s 13 annual Business Showcase.
The two-word expression, which can be seen on bumper stickers, shop windows and other places around the Valley, is the theme of this year’s event.
“We want to reinforce the ‘local first’ theme, which, really, this event always has,” said Chamber Executive Director Bill Chernock. “Overall, it’s about increasing awareness and asking folks that live here to always consider finding local vendors for whatever the need, whatever product or service, and to do their shopping and spending within the community.”
The event will bring together more than 70 businesses, government agencies and nonprofit organizations. It will give visitors a chance to see what local outfits offer.
“Potential customers can make those connections,” Chernock said. “It makes a difference.”
The showcase is one of the chamber’s biggest events of the year.
“There are usually about 150-175 people who work the booths, and about 800-900 people who come through the door,” Chernock said. “In terms of one place, in one room at one time, it is our largest event.”
Besides being educational and important to the local economy, the event is, for lack of a better word, fun. It runs 3-7 p.m. at the Douglas County Fairgrounds Pavilion.
“We are pretty excited to have all the booths full this year,” Chernock said. “We have 10 restaurants and food producers coming, and there should be more than enough munchies for people to sample.”
The event will feature a free raffle with more than 70 prizes, the CareFlight helicopter, and the D.A.R.E. Hummer and fingerprinting station of the Douglas County Sheriff’s Office. Free wireless internet is also available throughout the pavilion.
The event is sponsored by Frontier Communications, Carson-Tahoe Regional Healthcare, The Record-Courier, Pizza Hut, Douglas County Sheriff’s Office, and East Fork Fire & Paramedic Districts.
“With a thousand people going through there, you’re going to see friends and neighbors, and probably run into people you haven’t seen for a while,” said Chernock. “It’s a great way to spend a couple of hours. And, of course, it’s free.”