Local is indeed the new black.
Anyone who attended the inaugural Central Hunter Business and Community Expo at Miller Park in Branxton on Saturday October 27 could not fail to be impressed. The weather was perfect, the site well appointed and the crowd, in excess of 5,000 people, enjoyed a day to rival most regional shows. The atmosphere was upbeat, the music easy on the ear, the aroma from the food and coffee stalls was inticing and the offerings scrumptious. It was awesome to see small businesses and community groups proudly displaying their creativity. There were seven major sponsors and 110 stallholders plus numerous food vans. So something for everyone, from the smallest child to the oldest senior. The free kids zone was a favourite offering lots of freebies and the Men's Shed not only helped with many of the props, but also had their handicrafts proudly on display. The Expo was endowed with pet friendly status for the day so canines of all shapes, sizes and pedigrees mingled with the crowd in a fairly controlled fashion.
Last April a somewhat disheartened local business owner Alana Driver conceived the notion of our very own business Expo to showcase what the area has to offer and thats how The Central Hunter Business and Community Expo was born. Alana recognised the talent and skills of people in our midst who, like her, find the larger expos prohibitively expensive and unwelcoming. She also realised that such a forum could advance the aims and goals of our many community services and volunteer groups.
Trophies were awarded to Tilleys Play and Development Centre for the best community display and to Louise Nielson Conveyancing for the best business display. The feedback on the day was overwhelmingly positive and suggestions will be taken on board for the next Expo in 2020.