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2011 Home Show draws 220 vendors

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Builders, suppliers, developers, real estate agents and loan specialists will all be on hand at the 2011 Home Builders Association Home Show, hoping to connect with consumers who are ready to build or remodel homes.

“People can come and meet with a developer and Realtor, and find a lot and meet with the designer and architect, get financing and talk to a builder all in one place,” said John Harp, chairman of the Home Show committee since 1983 and regional sales manager for Acme Brick Co.

Charlyce Ruth, operations manager for the Home Builders Association of Greater Springfield, expects the Home Show, set for Jan. 28–30 at the Springfield Expo Center, to feature more than 220 vendors this year, roughly 20 vendors below the 2010 show.

“The big buzzword is green,” Harp said. “There are a lot of builders who are certified green builders, and many suppliers are showing post-consumer or recycled products.”

Harp said one of the products his company is showing is a paver made of recycled tires and plastic water bottles. “One hundred square feet of these pavers will reduce the waste in the landfill by 50 tires and 1,500 plastic bottles,” he said.

Harp expects the three-day show to draw between 16,000 and 18,000 visitors, similar to 2010 event attendance.

“It isn’t hard to mix up the show each year. We have a lot of new vendors and each year, the vendors have a different look,” Harp said.

Vendors pay a  minimum of $305 for booth space, Ruth said, with costs varying by display size and the company’s membership status in HBA.

Dusty Essick, president of Highlandville-based Essick Builders LLC is a first-time Home Show vendor this year.

“We were just looking for the opportunity to get our name out there,” said Essick, who specializes in new residential and commercial construction and remodels. “In a down economy, especially, we think it’s important to get out there and tell people who we are and what we do.”

Essick has booked an 8-foot-by-10-foot booth, which will be decorated to resemble a family room, showcasing his capabilities.

“We’ll have timber beams and an Old World look,” Essick said. “In reality, we may not reap the benefits of the show immediately. It may be a while down the road, but if we get one good contact, it is worth it.”

Crystal Shotts, a kitchen and bath designer with Southern Supply Co., began planning six months ago for the company’s second year in the show. Southern Supply will share a 20-foot-by-60-foot booth with Southern Materials, and the space will be built to make attendees feel like they’re walking through someone’s home. “It’s an extension of our showroom,” Shotts said, noting that the six-room display will have a kitchen, bath and mudroom – complete with a dog wash.

“I know we did at last a half dozen kitchens alone that came from last year’s show,” she added. “It’s an important show, very good exposure for us.”

The Home Show also will offer free seminars and demonstrations, including a 3-D home theater set up by SCS Home Entertainment.

SCS President Larry Batson said his demonstration would feature a $50,000 sound system. The home theater furniture will be supplied by Slumberland Furniture, and the room will accommodate up to 40 people an hour to screen part of a 3-D movie.

Tickets to the movie screening room are free, Batson said, but they will be available only at the separate SCS Home Entertainment booth on a first come, first serve basis.[[In-content Ad]]

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