2017-04-06 / Front Page

St. Ignace Home Show Starts Friday

Weekend Event Also Includes Gun Show
By Erich T. Doerr

The upcoming St. Ignace Home Show Spring Expo and Gun Show at Little Bear East Arena is drawing particularly strong interest from vendors this year. This year’s show will take place Friday, April 7, from 4 p.m. to 8 p.m., and Saturday, April 8, from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Admission for the shows is free. The events aim to draw more than 3,000 spectators.

“This will be our busiest show,” said Little Bear manager Scott Marshall of the vendor participation. “We’ve never been this full before… This is by far our best year.”

The show will be divided into different areas, with the gun show taking place in the arena’s conference center while the home show uses the Little Bear’s large ice rink area. In addition to the interior displays and tables, several vehicles may also be displayed outside the arena.

This year’s show was shaping up well last week, with all available spots booked up and more than 55 vendors scheduled to be part of the home show. There will be more than 20 vendors at the gun show. The show was also booked solid in 2016.

The show will feature vendors from throughout the state, with St. Ignace establishments joined by those from throughout the Eastern Upper Penin- sula and several from downstate. Spectators will have a chance to win door prizes including a push mower, a rifle scope, gift cards, gift baskets, and a Silver Eagle collector coin. A children’s activity booth will be offered.

Items on display and for sale will likely include cars, food, sealers, metal roofs, cutlery, water, real estate, monuments, maple products, taxidermy, off-road vehicles, hot tubs, personal watercraft, investment options, heating equipment, small engine items, paint, crafts, gutters, containers, books, and construction services. Others taking part in the show will include hardware stores, radio stations, banks, and Cloverland Electric Cooperative. Several local organizations will also have booths at the event including the St. Ignace Planning Commission, the United States Coast Guard Auxiliary, HOME of Mackinac County, the Mackinac County Sheriff’s Office, Mackinac Straits Health System, the St. Ignace Public Library, and the St. Ignace Masonic Lodge. Mr. Marshall said there are more craft vendors this year than in the past.

About 90% of the home show’s vendors return year after year. Mr. Marshall said businesses rate the event highly and the St. Ignace staff makes sure to take note of their suggestions for improving it. Organizing an event as big as the home show in a community as small as St. Ignace, he said, means that being able to attract outside businesses is vital to its success.

The process of setting up the arena for the shows began Tuesday, April 4.

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