Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

Companies' Expo Giveaways Are Designed to Bring You Back; the First Coast Business Expo Has Its Share of Creative Marketing Swag

Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

Companies' Expo Giveaways Are Designed to Bring You Back; the First Coast Business Expo Has Its Share of Creative Marketing Swag

Article excerpt

Byline: terry brown

As harp music swailed from the Marywood booth and into the expanse of the great hall, folks laden with bags filled with pens, pencils, coozies and refrigerator magnets snaked their way through the maze of exhibitors.

Imagination and marketing at its finest was on full display as the First Coast Business Expo began on Wednesday at the St. Johns County Convention Center. The event, sponsored by the St. Johns County Chamber of Commerce, brought together 125 business from across the area. The annual exhibition is expected to draw more than 2,000 people over three days, which concludes today with a golf tournament held at St. Johns Golf & Country Club.

In addition to the standard faire of business marketing swag, some booths stood out for some very uncommon offerings to those who stopped by to listen and and be informed about a business or service. The giveaways are fun and they were as varied as the number of businesses. Grand prize giveaways were even better. Just drop your business card in the pot, and with any luck you could be the winner of some nice merchandise.

Jeff Blumsack, a personal chef from St. Augustine who operates No Place Like Your Home, was offering two days of special or festive occasion meals, prepared in the winners home.

Stellers Gallery at Julington Creek was at the expo for the first time and had beautiful works of art on display. The new gallery at Bartram Walk in Fruit Cove had a special way to welcome guests to the event. The gallery was giving away several fine art prints, including works by Kent Sullivan and C. Ford Riley.

"We're newbies at the Expo," said Gallery Director Forrest Holland. "We viewed the expo as a good way to let people know where we are."

Gerri Beth Guzman of Stellers added the company has been around for 20 years, but was new to the northwest part of the county. …

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