Harrisburg, IL – Celebrating how we have it MADE here in Southern Illinois, State Senator Dale Fowler and the Southern Illinois Chambers of Commerce are partnering together to host the second annual Southern Illinois Made Expo on Saturday, July 27 from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. and on Sunday, July 28 from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., at the Pavilion, 1602 Sioux Drive in Marion.
“Southern Illinois has so much to offer in terms of unique products, incredible destinations and innovative creations. There is so much to be proud of in our region, and this event gives our exceptional business community a platform to showcase their goods and connect with consumers,” said State Senator Fowler. “Last year was our first Expo and the turnout was incredible. We welcomed approximately 2,000 visitors and raised close to $30,000 for our charity. The outcome was a true testament to our local businesses.”
The event is the premiere opportunity for the business community of Southern Illinois to showcase the impressive products made and destinations available throughout the region. Exhibitors are invited to register for the event, display their businesses and sell products, creations, and tasty treats.
“We encourage local artisan and craftsman to join us in showcasing all that Southern Illinois has to offer. Both Saturday and Sunday offer a unique opportunity for exhibitors to sell directly to the public and wholesale/retail buyers,” said Mullins. “Potential consumers can see, sample, and purchase products and learn about the many destinations Southern Illinois has to offer.”
“While last year was a great success, we’re excited to come together for the second year and make this even bigger and better. We have more booth space this year, bringing in more vendors and offering even more of a selection in products and goods to the public,” said Sen. Fowler. “The Southern Illinois Expo is really a celebration, highlighting what’s unique to our region and creating this one-of-a-kind opportunity to shop locally and help out a great cause.”
To be a vendor in the Southern Illinois Made Expo, the following requirements must be met:
- Feature products produced in Southern Illinois or destinations available in Southern Illinois
- Willingness and capacity to sell/showcase products/destinations to retailers and the general public at your booth during both days of the event
- Agree not to exhibit or promote any products/destinations not made in Southern Illinois
- Agree to all Exhibitor Rules & Regulations listed in the Participation Agreement Form section
Interested vendors need to register for the event by April 1, with booth prices starting at $75. Currently, 68 vendors have already registered for the event. To register, vendors must visit simade.org or call the Marion Chamber of Commerce at (618) 997-6311
“Southern Illinois Made Expo is an exciting event tied to the Shop Southern Illinois campaign that area Chambers of Commerce developed to encourage local residents to support local businesses,” said Karen Mullins, Executive Director of the Marion Chamber of Commerce. “Area chambers are a great resource for educating consumers to shop and buy locally, realizing that a small shift in shopping trends can result in millions of dollars in new revenue for area businesses. Local businesses hire locally, spend their money locally, contribute to their communities and regions and offer everything we need or want.”
Sponsorship opportunities are also available for the Southern Illinois Made Expo. Only members of participating Southern Illinois Chambers of Commerce are eligible to be sponsors of the Southern Illinois Made Expo. To become a sponsor, or for more information, visit simade.org
The event is open to the general public, giving visitors the chance to experience firsthand the quality of unique products made by Southern Illinois artists, designers, and manufacturers and the beauty of Southern Illinois destinations. A donation of $5 to Veterans Honor Flight of Southern Illinois will be suggested for admission by all guests. All proceeds from admission and exhibitor fees will go towards Veterans Honor Flight of Southern Illinois.
For more information, visit simade.org or call (618) 997-6331