Sunday, May 16, 2010

Day two of the show.

Our day today started at 6am after retiring at midnight the night before.  To say it was early, made my head numb.  But we ate breakfast and headed for the show.  The begins slowly and quietly at the show.

At first, the only people on the grounds are the exhibitors.  They tend to organize and get ready for the flood of people.  We unload the trailer and set up our displays in our store.  Our store was  a 9 x 18 arched roof tent.  It contained a door at its front and the walls consisted of tables with the stuff for sale.

As it neared 8 AM we went up to the ticket area and sold our remaining tickets at the pre show price.  That saved two folks  a five dollar bill.  The show is $25 at the door, but since we purchased the tickets last month, we sold them for the $20 they cost.

Once the gates are open, everything moves all at once. Crowds move from spot to spot and sales begin.  It becomes a blur.

At 9 AM the vendors inside the buildings open and the retail folks begin to sell their wares.  This is when I begin to watch the inside booth where I work.. We are the overflow people, that arrive when times become so hectic that the employee staff cannot keep up.  Eventually none of us can keep up.

It became noon in a flash, and by 3 PM we were beginning to slow the pace.  That is when we went back to our outside duties.  Somewhere in there I had a burger that one of the fellows went after.

Tonight we disassembled the outside tent, and stored everything back in the trailer.  The show is essentially over.  Only two of us help the inside vendor, which we started many years ago.  We were invited to their evening final meal, which meant we left our other brothers for the night.

We went to Lone Star, and had a very nice meal that was subsidized by the company.   Other than our ticket into the show and this meal, we do not actually get any pay.  I'm not sure how this arrangement came about, but our vendor ticket opens all the doors available to the highest level of exhibitor.  That in itself is worth the small amount of actual work we might do.

Tomorrow we will pack up and depart the hotel, spend a couple of hours at the show, and drive back to Des Moines.  That is mind boggling as I type it, so I think I need to get some sleep!!!

Retired Rod


  1. I sure hope you got a great dinner out of this deal as it sure sounds like a long day and a lot of work - especially on 6 hours sleep!

  2. Hope the weather improves for your drive west, we haven't seen the sun since monday and it is raining again this morning in the St Charles MO area. Have a safe trip, I've done that trip to DesMoines (Ames) many times. Be safe out there, Sam & Donna.


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