Something for all lifestyles at annual expo
By: By Lucy Haines
| Posted: Wednesday, Apr 02, 2014 06:00 am
The St. Albert Lifestyle Expo & Sale returns to Servus Credit Union Place this weekend, April 4 to 6, helping residents welcome spring with returning favourites, new attractions and a sold-out roster of over 200 exhibitors.
Hosted by the St. Albert and District Chamber of Commerce, the expo is a long-running annual tradition, drawing from 8,000 to 10,000 visitors to the showcase of products and services offered by businesses in St. Albert and the capital region.
St. Albert and District Chamber of Commerce events manager Debbie Grant said the event provides exposure for businesses to the community in a wide variety of areas, from home-based businesses – jewellery, kitchen tools, etc. – to renovation/building supply companies, health and fitness and recreation ideas.
“The expo isn’t just geared to one clientele, the way a home improvement show is,” Grant said. “Some come for the entertainment, some want to buy something – there’s a little bit of everything and something for every member of the family.”
Shopping or planning a home renovation project is certainly part of the draw, but many St. Albert residents also look forward to the attractions and entertainment. Returning and popular favourites include the petting zoo, inflatable bouncers, St. Albert Idol, live entertainment and the much-loved Baby Crawl, a race for our city’s youngest residents.
For several years, the St. Albert Gazette has sponsored the annual Baby Crawl, a fun event that draws about 20 pint-sized racers and plenty of camera-toting parents and grandparents to capture the cute moments along the race course.
Al Glaser, sales manager of the Gazette, said whether babies laugh, cry or race like they own the course, it’s always a highly anticipated event at the expo. Babies can be registered in advance or on the day-of at Servus Place.
The Baby Crawl goes Sunday at 11:30 a.m. and this year, all will come away with something, whether it’s the top prize of a $250 RESP from ATB Financial, a $100 gift certificate from Seasons Gift Shop or a goodie-filled McDonald’s gift bag.
A new attraction at this year’s expo is the Taste of St. Albert, offering $1 samples of cuisine from: Boston Pizza, Famoso Neapolitan Pizzeria, Rico’s Bistro, The River House, The Celtic Knot and The Lemon Grass Grill.
As well, a new area devoted to outdoor lifestyle experiences and the botanical arts will feature displays devoted to products and services for the outdoors – think patio and deck, RV camping and more.
If the weather remains chilly, a new free coat check service at the show entrance will ensure comfort as visitors walk through the Expo halls.
The Lifestyle Expo runs from 2 to 9 p.m. Friday, April 4; 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. on Sat. April 5, and 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Sunday, April 6.
Friday is Seniors’ Day, with free admission for visitors 55 and up. A special hour of toe-tapping music from days past, arranged by Visionary College, will run from 3 to 4 p.m. that day.
Children 12 and under have free admission all weekend, while adults pay $3, or $5 for a weekend pass. As in past years, adults and kids can participate in the Stamp Around program, with a chance at one of two $1,000 gift certificates from Gemport, and an assortment of prizes from local businesses for the kids’ draw.