PARKERSBURG - Homeowners planning repair and renovation projects this year can look at new products and services this weekend at the 2010 Great American Home Show in Parkersburg.
The home show began Friday afternoon and will run from 9 a.m. to 7 p.m. today and noon to 4 p.m. Sunday in the former Big Bear building in the Park Shopping Center next to the traffic circle.
The home show is sponsored by the Home Builders Association of the Mid-Ohio Valley and about 70 vendors are participating in the three-day event, said John Farnsworth, the association's executive officer.
Kimberly Vitrules, left, and Ben Gerenday, center, talk with Tony Lang, owner of Lang’s Flooring, during the first day of the 2010 Great American Home Show in Parkersburg. (Photo by Wayne Towner)
Farnsworth said the vendor turnout is normal for the annual event and only one scheduled vendor had not been able to make it Friday due to the winter storm. Vendors are offering a wide range of products and services, "about anything you need for the home," he said.
"We're hoping that the weather stays half-decent because we feel we really have a good home show," Farnsworth said Friday during a rain-filled afternoon, adding the event has been well attended over the years.
The Great American Home Show has been a yearly event in the Parkersburg and Vienna area for more than 30 years and remains popular with local residents, he said. Farnsworth said he can only remember one year when winter weather caused cancellation of the home show.
Farnsworth said he talked with vendors Friday as they were setting up about the effects of the national economic downturn and was told effects have been varied. Some vendors have remained busy while others have seen some slowdown in their business. Those, especially, hope the home show will provide a local boost for their businesses, he said.
Justin Boyles of Parkersburg attended the home show Friday because he wanted to check out the new products and items for the home. He comes to the home show in Parkersburg most years to see what is new and different. This year, Boyles said he is doing remodeling and wanted to see what was available and look for ideas.
Parkersburg residents Jody Stewart and Richard Bunnell were planning home repairs and were looking at ideas and services available at the home show.
"The chance to see new products that are on the market is what I like," Stewart said of the event.
Tony Lang, owner of Lang's Flooring, said the home show in Parkersburg is a good start for the season and has done well for him in previous years. He doesn't get a lot of business at the show itself, but through the year he will see the effects as people begin moving forward with plans and projects later in the year.
"That's why we do this show. It's early for the building season and we get a lot of people through," he said.
Lang said the national recession has had some impact on his business and those he works with, but the past month was the best January he had seen in the last few years.
"We hope it's on the upturn. When can you keep the contractors working, you keep us busy," he said of suppliers like his own company.