Location: Sykesville, MD
Day of the Week: Saturday
Weather: Warm with a Breeze
Organization: Before the event, there was plenty of visible advertising and information about load-in, zones, and maps were provided well in advance. During the event, some of the zoning seemed to get thrown out of the window (I was moved from Yellow to Blue), but things went pretty smoothly.
Crowd: Much smaller than advertised. We were told to expect 3,000 …. there were probably 300.
Crowd Make-Up: Almost entirely families with young children.
Booth Fee: $125 for a 10′ x 10′ space
I am torn about doing this show again. It was very well organized and the people running the event (Caring Communities) are a joy to work with. However, the crowd was way too small for the cost of the event and there was no weather to blame that day. I lost money doing this show, although less of a loss than at some shows. I sold enough that it wasn’t a total loss, but some of the vendors nearby didn’t sell a single thing — unacceptable for a show of this cost and that was advertised this heavily.
Sykesville is a beautiful town and has a gorgeous main street. I think that the townspeople would welcome more events here, but I do think that the labeling of this show as explicitly for “Babies and Children” scared some people away. A few of the customers I spoke with mentioned that they came despite not having children, but that they felt a bit out of place. Others, parents, were disappointed with the limited offerings of free samples, rides, and games.
This show has a lot of potential. Considering that there are shows with a much longer history who still can’t get the basics right, I hope that Caring Communities continues hosting this event. I would suggest that they make some changes in either audience demographic or in offerings.
I’m willing to give it another try next year, but I will really need to see if I can afford another potential “lose-money” show.