Wednesday, November 17, 2004

Who's Who in Business

Showcase highlights valley companies and shops


By MEGAN THOMAS
Express Staff Writer

Visitors to the Business Showcase explore Wood River Valley business offerings. Photo by David N. Seelig

Despite the slack season, the Wood River Valley was a buzz with business last week. An array of Wood River Valley's businesses gathered Thursday, Nov. 11 for the 12th Annual Business Showcase presented by the Sun Valley/Ketchum Chamber and Visitors Bureau. The tradeshow style showcase was held in the Sun Valley Inn's Limelight Room to offer businesses opportunity to display their products and services and to meet others in the community.

"I have found over the years that locals are our best advertising. The best thing you can do is to know your neighbors," Scott Schnebly, owner of Lost River Outfitters, said.

It was neighbors meeting neighbors as members of the business community munched on snacks and mingled throughout a variety of 55 booths.

A collection of vendors capitalized on the opportunity to introduce new products and services.

Fortunate Dog Cookies brought their new dog treats that arrived to town only two days before. KECH radio introduced a new morning blend of coffee. The Environmental Resource Center presented their program Circle of Environmental Excellence and Leadership or CEEL. Other businesses used the event to draw attention to change.

"Because of our new location in Hailey, we feel like we needed to get the exposure," Carrie Shaw, owner of Hailey Nursery, explained.

As vendors took advantage of the opportunity to expose their businesses, guests also had an opportune time to explore local businesses.

"Attendees see what's out there," Stefany Mahoney, membership and visitors services manager for the chamber, explained.

Jason Bennett attended the event to see what small businesses he could utilize for his business needs, such as copy services.

"My interest lies in seeing where I fit with small businesses," Bennett, managing partner and general contractor of Sage Development, said.

The range of interests and businesses drew an estimated crowd of 300 people.

"The turnout is incredible, I didn't expect this much," Shaw remarked.

During the event, the chamber raffled two nonstop Horizon Air flights to Oakland and two to Los Angeles. Attendees also won a collection of door prizes at business booths announced by valley DJs.

The free event was sponsored by Sun Valley Company, Mountain West Bank, Names and Numbers, KECH, KSKI and KYZK.




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