The Ponoka and District Chamber of Commerce expects a full house Friday and Saturday. Organizers have scheduled an ice cream truck and entertainment for the entire family.

The Ponoka and District Chamber of Commerce expects a full house Friday and Saturday. Organizers have scheduled an ice cream truck and entertainment for the entire family.

Trade fair promises fun for the entire family

"It’s going to be a great show. You’ve gotta be there!” Les Jaster, Ponoka and District Chamber of Commerce Executive Director

One of the Ponoka and District Chamber of Commerce’s largest events is about to unfold at the Ponoka Culture and Recreation Complex.

The chamber’s trade fair has become a staple for businesses to show off what they do best, but it also gives families a chance to enjoy the many different venues and entertainment available. Set for April 25 from 3 to 9 p.m. and April 26 from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., executive director Les Jaster said there were no booths left available to vendors.

In an effort to meet a variety of vendors’ needs, Jaster opened up the small ice surface to local artisans and craftspeople, as well as home-based businesses. Dubbed the Market Square, Jaster suggests this added space is another way to entice people to come to the trade fair. He feels the weekend will be an exciting one.

“We’ll have 100 trade fair booths full of merchants,” he said.

In an effort to ensure the fair goes off without a hitch, Jaster, and chamber executive, Pam Baron, have steadily recruited volunteers to help and he suggests anyone willing to offer their services should call Baron at 403-783-4466.

Lots of entertainment over the weekend

The trade fair also gives local artists, entertainers and musicians a chance to showcase their talents. Entertainment organizer Judy Dick says there will be choirs from St. Augustine Catholic School and from Ponoka Elementary School.

The Ponoka Gymnastics and Trampoline Club puts on a show that has many people turning their heads as well, added Dick. “It’s just an added extra to the vendors that are there.”

Jaster said he has also booked an ice cream truck for the weekend, which will be set up on the small ice surface. Feedback from vendors and attendees has shown a strong desire to see more food options at the fair. “It’s going to be a great show. You’ve gotta be there!”

Chamber president Jim Hamilton also looks forward to bringing this event to Ponoka. “Last year it was so successful.”

Big prizes

Hamilton is also sponsoring this year’s draw through Hamilton’s IGA. Every person that completes a card that has all participating booths at the fair can enter their names into the draw. Twenty lucky winners will be able to take someone with them to the Telus World of Science on May 3 on the Lion’s bus.

Winners will also receive $30 spending money and a ticket to the IMAX Theatre. Hamilton said the science centre tied in well with the trade fair’s theme of Colour Our World Green.

Trade fair brings large numbers

Expect to see between 3,000 and 5,000 attendees throughout the weekend who will be eager to view vendors and see the talented entertainers.

One reason Jaster feels the fair does so well is because of the customers the chamber markets to. “I think it’s popular and successful because it is geared for the family,” offered Jaster.

“It’s going to be a great show. You’ve gotta be there!” Les Jaster, Ponoka and District Chamber of Commerce Executive Director