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Chamber: Trade show is sold out
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Amanda Witt

Wednesday, February 5, 2014

No more booth spaces are available for this year’s annual trade show sponsored by the Martinsville-Henry County Chamber of Commerce.

Fast Track 2014 is scheduled for 4-8 p.m. March 4-5 in the building behind the Clocktower Building at Commonwealth Centre, the former Tultex factory on Commonwealth Boulevard near Liberty Fair Mall.

The chamber is “thrilled to once again sell out of exhibitor spaces for Fast Track so that attendees can see a wide array of the thriving businesses and organizations that serve our community,” said its president, Amanda Witt.

About 135 firms have committed to showcasing their products and services during the expo, Witt said.

Some will occupy more than one booth, she said.

Despite all of the booth spaces having been sold, Witt said further inquiries about participating in the trade show are welcome.

At least two potential participants who contacted the chamber on Tuesday will be placed on a waiting list in case some business or organization has to pull out of the expo, Witt said.

Witt also said it may be possible to slightly redesign the show’s floor layout to accommodate more booths. If so, firms on the list will be contacted.

But she cannot guarantee that additional spaces can be made because this is the first year that the chamber is using the building in which the show will be held, and chamber officials are not overly familiar with the space.

Trade shows in recent years were held in the Clocktower Building. Space in that structure no longer is available, which resulted in the move to the new location on the property.

If more spaces become available, a booth will cost $500 for businesses that are chamber members and $680 for nonmembers. For nonprofits, the cost will be $350 for members and $530 for nonmembers.

The extra $180 for nonmembers in both categories includes a chamber membership for one year, according to Witt.

This year marks the 20th anniversary of Fast Track.

The chamber held its first trade show in 1992. The event was held for six years before being discontinued for two years because of a lack of suitable space. It was revived in 2000 when space was found again, and it has been held each year since then.

Fast Track’s first night always is open to invited adult guests only as it is intended to be a time for networking among local business people.

Again this year, “VIP Business Night” will feature “The Taste of Martinsville-Henry County,” in which area restaurants will serve samples from their menus.

The show will be open to the public on the following day — a Wednesday — for an admission fee of $2 or two cans of food, which The Grace Network will distribute to the needy locally.


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