Jacksonville’s annual Tomato Fest was Saturday, June 12, 2021 and it was a blast! I have always loved attending the event put on by Jacksonville’s Chamber of Commerce, but this year I did something different. I decided I couple months before the event to sell some of my designs I do as a hobby in my very own booth. It was A LOT of work for a one day event, but it was so worth it and extremely rewarding.
I started with my designs. I wrapped up a few that I had started: maps, drawings, thank you cards, etc. and I also created some new designs. I printed, packaged, and framed every evening for several weeks, doing a little bit of planning and preparation at a time. This is not my full time job so I did not have unlimited time to get ready. As the event got closer, I put my products in boxes and prepped my hanging materials, tent, tables, etc.
We began set up the night before the event. This is when we set up the tent, tables, chairs, and planned the layout. I was nervous to leave my products out over night because of the wind, night dew, and who knows what else! I decided to arrive early the morning of the event to do my final setting up and product presentation.
I highly recommend recruiting help for your trade shows! My husband, Cade was my right hand man the whole weekend! He helped me set up, sell products, kept me company, and clean up at the end of Tomato Fest. We also had my sister and brother-in-law who helped, hung out with us, and kept the baby for us! My entourage is everything!
During the event, we met some amazing people and I am still reeling over how much you all loved my products. I sold so many of my Jacksonville, Texas map designs, Tomato Bowl stickers and magnets, Taqueria Torres stickers, Sadlers Stickers, and so much more!! I never expected the enthusiasm and love that I received at Tomato Fest. In fact, the morning of the event I had jitters. I was nervous nobody would be interested and all my work would be for nothing. I started the morning chatty and nervous, hoping my overly excited smile and “Goodmornings” would entice people to my booth. The morning started a little slow, but BOY DID IT GET BUSY! The event’s organizer mentioned there was a record turnout with an estimated 15,000 people who attended.
Overall, I had a great time at the event and since I was asked sooooo many times for my website, I decided to share it with the world. If you like my products, I would love for you to follow me on social media, buy a design, or just say hello!