Volunteers needed for trade show

The Fort Frances Chamber of Commerce’s annual Home & Leisure Show is coming up April 27-28 at the Memorial Sports Centre and organizers are looking for volunteers to lend a helping hand.
“Volunteers are a very important part of it. Without them, we wouldn’t be able to do half the things we do,” Chamber office manager Dawn Booth said this morning.
She noted she still needs volunteers for a few specific tasks.
“We need people to sit at the admission desk,” Booth remarked. “We need people for floor ambassadors, who basically walk the floor and relieve exhibitors who need a break for 15 minutes at a time.
“We also need volunteers for the kids’ corner. So if anyone’s interested in coming for a couple hours and doing that kind of stuff, they can contact me,” she added.
Booth noted that helping out at the trade show is a perfect opportunity for high school students who have to earn those volunteer hours required to graduate.
She said, on average, volunteers shifts are two hours. “If you want to do more, you can. If you want to do less, you certainly can, as well,” she added.
Meanwhile, Booth said about 50 exhibitors have registered for the trade show so far, but that there still are quite a few spots open.
“We keep getting a couple every day,” she said, adding the Chamber hopes to see at least 70 by the time next weekend rolls around.
Any individuals or businesses interested in volunteering or being an exhibitor is encouraged to call the Chamber at 274-5773 or drop by the office in person.
< *c>Photo contests
As previously reported, this year’s home and leisure show will have several new features, including two photo contests. But the public is reminded the deadline to enter either one is this Friday (April 20).
Organizer Kerry Dittaro said this morning the “Cutest Puppy Contest,” where dog owners can enter photos of their pooches for a chance to win a huge gift basket of puppy treats and toys, has seen “an overwhelming response.”
She added she has close to 20 entries as of today.
While previously only the first 20 entries were going to be accepted, Dittaro said if more than that come in prior to the end of Friday, she’ll try to accommodate them all.
The contest is open to photos of dogs of any age or breed. There is a $5 entry fee.
The photos will be put on display at the home and leisure show. Using a voting box on loan from Beta Sigma Phi, those who come to the show then will vote on the photographs of the dogs.
Voters can put in whatever amount of money they want, with the dog that brings in the most money winning.
A portion of the proceeds will be donated to the Fort Frances Friends of Animals.
As mentioned, this Friday also is the deadline for a second photo contest at next week’s trade show—where area shutterbugs can enter pictures in three categories: home and leisure, the great outdoors, and “for kids only” (a category for district children aged 13 and under).
“We have got five or so with multiple pictures. We’re definitely looking for more,” said Booth. “I know just from Chamber board members and staff that we have a few entries that we’re going to be submitting.
“We just haven’t gotten around to it yet.”
The entry fee is $10 per photo or $20 for three. All entries will be on display at the home and leisure show.
The winners will be selected by a panel of judges. Prizes, provided by Fort Custom Picture Framing, will be up for grabs in each category.
Other attractions at this year’s home and leisure show will include outdoors columnist Gord Ellis, who is scheduled to hold separate workshops on fishing and outdoor photography, a children’s area featuring performances by “Grandpa Magic,” a penny auction, and much more.
The Chamber also is holding a contest whereby each person who pays the $3 admission to the home and leisure show receives an entry to win $1,000 in cash.
The trade show is scheduled to run Friday, April 27 from noon-9 p.m. and again Saturday, April 28 from 9 a.m.-5 p.m.