Vendors were 'thrilled' at response from the public
The second annual King City Expo was a major success by all accounts.
Organizer Kathy Peper built on last year's success, including vendors from the first event but adding a lot of new ones, and local residents turned out in droves to get information about dozens of programs, services and products.
"We had 125 people through the door in the first hour," Peper said. "We think we had 300-plus through the doors total. We gave out 254 blue shopping bags, and a lot of men did not take them, couples only took one, and sometimes the visitor already had a bag and didn't take one.
"The vendors were thrilled, and several ran out of supplies because they had not expected so many people. Retirement Connection had to have staff bring additional books and blue bags from their office."
The Expo literally filled the King City Clubhouse until it was nearly bursting at the seams. All the furniture was moved out early that morning to make room for more vendors, and then all the furniture was put back in place that evening.
There was one lucky dog at the event, as Hannah the Pet Society had rescue cats and dogs available for adoption outside the Clubhouse main entrance, and according to Peper, one puppy was adopted.
She was a little concerned beforehand if there would be adequate parking, but it proved to be ample, especially because West Hills Rehab and Canfield Senior Living ran continuous shuttle buses between the King City Clubhouse and the Summerfield Clubhouse, where people could park in its lot.
"Parking was not a problem, and it was very helpful that Summerfield let us use its west lot for overflow parking," Peper said.
In addition to providing an opportunity for vendors to get the word out about their services and for hundreds of people to learn about them, the Expo also raised more than $800 for Elders in Action through the sale of vendor tables.
Elders in Action utilizes more than 150 volunteers and eight staff members to solve seniors' problems and tackle their important issues while helping businesses and communities better serve their older customers.
The organization provides personal advocate services, speakers' bureaus, a 31-member commission that advises local officials on programs and policies for older adults, and an age-friendly certification program for businesses to better serve seniors.
Leslie Foren, executive director of Elders in Action, emailed Peper, thanking her for her "innovative fundraising idea around the recent King City event."
She added, "Thanks to you, Elders in Action greatly benefited from the table partners' generous donations. Several of the businesses have expressed interest in our programs and the work that we do here at Elders in Action. It sounds like the event was a great success and well attended. Thank you again for your collaboration and innovation."
Peper, who owns To Your Door Spa and Salon, is already thinking ahead to the third annual King City Expo, noting that some vendors have already expressed interest in attending.