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Hundreds flock to Saturday business expo

Jessica O’Connell (right) of Central Missouri Community Credit Union of Richmond talks with an exhibit-goer Saturday at the chamber-sponsored business expo.

Jessica O’Connell (right) of Central Missouri Community Credit Union of Richmond talks with an exhibit-goer Saturday at the chamber-sponsored business expo.

Fifty businesses filled Richmond Middle School commons and spilled outdoors with new cars and exhibits for the second annual Richmond Area Business Expo. For many who came, they said they were impressed with the number of businesses and were surprised with the amount of goods and services Richmond has to offer.

“I think it’s great, said Karen Branson, who also attended last year’s expo. “There’re new businesses here I didn’t realize were in town.”

A wide cross-section – from health care, to banking, to retail, to home improvement – created a mini Main Street of shops. While a definite crowd number wasn’t available, it appeared it was double from last year’s inaugural event. Organizations, like Richmond Education Foundation and Masonic Lodge #57, served breakfast and lunch, also a draw for the event. Door prize drawings, promised every 30 minutes, were bumped to 15 minutes on the hour throughout the day because participating businesses donated more than anticipated.

“Thank you to everyone who participated and for their generous donations,” Natalie Lamar, Richmond Area Chamber of Commerce director, said. “Businesses seemed very pleased with the event and the nice turnout for it.”

“This expo really helps build a sense of community. It’s wonderful. I didn’t know what to expect, but it more than met any expectation I had,” said Brad Hogan, executive vice president of Community Bank of Missouri.

Hogan said Community Bank has been part of many expos, both small and large and considered it “better than most.” It was the bank’s first year at the chamber-sponsored expo.

“I look forward to next year.”

 

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