As Westerner Park celebrates its 125th year in Red Deer, we are reflecting back on the strong partnerships we’ve made in this vibrant community. Our Best to You Art & Craft Sale is a long-time supporter of Westerner Park and one of our favourite collaborators. And even though she’s busy planning the 25th anniversary show on October 28–30, show manager Jo-Anne Fahey took some time to talk to us about the event and its long-lasting relationship with the park.
Westerner Park: Can you tell us a little about the show coming up?
Jo-Anne Fahey: The Our Best to You Art & Craft Sale is Red Deer’s favourite holiday shopping event. Each year, we welcome over 18,000 visitors through the Westerner Park doors and feature over 200 of Canada’s most talented handmade artists, artisans and designers during our three-day show.
WP: How long has your event been held at Westerner Park?
JF: Our show has been held at Westerner Park for the past 24 years – this year, we are proud to celebrate our milestone 25th anniversary in Red Deer at Westerner Park.
WP: What makes Westerner Park an ideal venue?
JF: First and foremost, Westerner Park is an ideal venue because of its amazing staff! Year after year, we’re met with consummate professionalism and extremely dedicated workers who make our lives, and our exhibitors’ lives, so much easier for the entire duration of our stay. In addition, we love how spacious the event space is for our visitors and how easy load-in and move-out is for our exhibitors!
WP: Looking back over the years, what are some of your favourite event memories?
JF: A few years ago, there was an incredible windstorm in Red Deer. The gusts were so strong that, while our exhibitors were loading in for our show, almost a quarter of the pipe-and-drape that was already set-up was blown down! We thought this would be a huge roadblock and that our show would suffer, but luckily the Westerner Park staff was quick to react. Everything was set-up back to normal in no time, helping us survive the weekend.
The Westerner Park campgrounds have become a refuge, of sorts, for some of our exhibitors. After all, some travel from as far east as the Maritimes to exhibit at our show! Through the years, we’ve heard some great post-show stories of the antics at the campgrounds – although some stories may not exactly be shareable for all audiences!
What can we expect to see at your upcoming event?
The next show runs October 28–30, 2016 and will gather over 200 of Canada’s top artists, artisans & designers under one roof for three unforgettable days of shopping. What’s great about our show is the interactivity – you get to meet the makers in person, to hear the stories behind their products, and see and feel their works first-hand.
This year we’re proud to celebrate our 25th show in Red Deer and we’re giving away a huge prize to our loyal visitors. Fans of the Our Best to You Facebook page can enter our contest for a chance to win a $250 shopping spree to our show! Each visitor at the show also receives a prize ballot for the many draws we have planned throughout the show.
We’ll also have amazing content and special offers exclusively on our social channels – fans can take part in the online conversation by using our hashtags #OurBestToYou and #HandmadeLive, and can follow us on: Instagram (signatures.ca), Twitter (@signaturesca) and Snapchat (snapchat.com/add/signaturesca).
WP: Thanks Jo-Anne! And happy birthday from us to you!
Photo thanks to Our Best to You on Facebook.