This past weekend, I had high hopes for the two shows on my events schedule. For very different reasons, I came away from both events very disappointed.
The Saturday show was the Handmade Faire in Medford, NJ. The show was probably promoted better than any show I've ever attended. There were many members of the fast-growing EtsyNJ street team at the show and I had very high expectations for this event. Unfortunately, during the week of the event, it seemed like Mother Nature was going to play a part. As the event creeped closer, it became very apparent that she would play a large role, much larger than anyone wanted her to play.
The show was held at a small airport and with half the vendors inside a large tent and the other half outside in 10x10 spots. Nearly all of the outside vendors had tents, which were needed as rain began to fall prior to the show's start.
As the show began, it showed a lot of promise. The first 100 customers received "Goodie Bags" and those 100 bags were gone very quickly. As more and more people came, Mother Nature decided to deal her hand... a soaking rain with a moderate wind.
The people continued to come out and support this new show. I heard comments about the unique items and vendors. Actually, the customers I spoke with were raving about the show. Customers were there to buy gifts for friends and for themselves and the outside vendors seemed to be doing well.
My tent often had several people looking at items and as I had a brief minute to look, several other tents looked to be quite busy as well. And Mother Nature continued to increase her onslaught with brief moments of drenching rains and constant wind that had vendors making tent adjustments.
I watched my hubby shifting weights in the tent trying to combat the steady wind and strong gusts. Eventually he had to start taking down the walls in hopes of keeping the tent upright. One whole side wall had to be removed, as did 3/4 of the other side wall and more than half the back of the tent walls. My hubby spent most of the show hanging onto the tent leg that was getting the full brunt of a wind that just seemed to get stronger as the minutes went by.
The large outdoor crowds were moving into the "big top-type" tent that housed nearly 50 vendors and those that did venture into my tent were beginning to show fear that the tent wouldn't hold together and quite frankly, I was concerned also.
Outside vendors began packing up when displays tore, tent brackets snapped and merchandise began getting wet.
I stuck it out for 3.5 hours and began to pack it in, when the reports indicated the winds would soon increase and the flood of customers turned into a trickle and mostly walked right by my shop. By the time I had finished packing everything into the truck, the remainder of the outside crew was also packing up.
In all, it wasn't a horrible day. But expectations were extremely high and the early part of the show indicated the sales would have been very good with a nice weather forecast.. With a Sunday show pending, it only made sense to pack up and protect my items from possible damages.... only this show also didn't pan out, but for many reasons different than the Handmade Faire.
A couple new items went into my shop today (see picture to my Etsy shop) and the above picture is an item that might be found in my shop at some point.
In my next entry, I'll discuss show #2.
til next time...