Sunday, May 4, 2014

Montpelier Festival of Herbs, Teas and the Arts review April 26,2014

Montpelier Festival of Herbs, Teas and the Arts review April 26,2014

I can keep this review short because I found nothing wrong with the show itself. The winds were a beast and there were many tent kites but ours held its own until the very end when the wind blew the tent canopy off and bent the frame a bit. No worries. Everyone was very helpful and every time a tent went flying other vendors and shoppers came running to help. We really were surrounded by a great group of people. This show was small but great! It was very well organized and the traffic and sales were good a steady. I was so busy I could even sit down. They had a special area set up for vendors with bathrooms, refreshment and water. It was a very nice touch. Parking was smooth for vendors and shoppers, unloading was smooth and quick. I can’t wait until next year I will be the first to sign up!

Old Town Bowie Antique craft and food truck festival show review

The Old Town Bowie Antique craft and food truck festival show was on May 5 and I was there as a vendor.  So here's the skinny!

For starters this event was unorganized. All the streets were blocked and no one seemed to know how to give accurate instructions on how to get to your booth. So after driving around for 30 minutes we finally managed to get someone to direct us to our spot. Imagine a small road with vendors on either side setting up and a narrow passage way to which vendors were instructed to drive down and unload. We used the truck so this was a tight squeeze. Apparently an email was sent out with a staggered set up schedule but I guess no one got it ( including me) because it was chaotic.  Once we finally got to our spot, someone had already set up shop. So we wait and wait, finally after waiting 20 minutes for that problem to solved we set up and the festival starts. By now i'm thoroughly irritated and ready to just turn around and go home. but.... I'm optimistic it will get better. LOL!  The event starts, now the name of the event is Old Town Bowie Antique craft and food truck festival. However the vendors were split into two sections separated by a bridge and maybe a road. One section was lucky enough to have all the food vendors while the other (my section had nothing) In order for us to get food we had to walk all the way to the other side of the event to find food. This was not just a straight walk down the road. The vendors in my section couldn't even see the vendors or food trucks on the other side. You couldn't smell the food either. If it hadn't been advertised then we would have never even known that the food trucks were there or that there were more vendors. I personally looked forward to eating while I watch the steady but very slow foot traffic walk by like we weren't even there. Luckily, I was fortunate enough to make my money back but I don’t consider that a success. I personally consider a success 4-5x the show fee. In fact, I think that if Mother’s Day and Graduation weren't around the corner I wouldn't have made the show fee back.  I know many vendors didn't make a dime.

From what I understand this is the first year that the event was taken over by someone else. The returning vendors said that last year both the spring and fall shows were awesome and that’s why they returned. However this year was a huge disappointment to many. I've never vended at this show but can honestly say I will probably never attend this show again. It could have been so much better with a little more organization and planning. If they had a better set up plan and instructions on where to go instead of a bunch of blocked off streets and people who didn't have a clue that would have been great. When you are limited on space it's good to have a predesignated off loading point. Especially since there was a parking lot right down the hill. Many vendors use this lot to pack up. Second, to be fair the food trucks should be available on both sides of the event. Vendors and shoppers should not have to walk all the way to the other side to find food. The food was supposed to be one of the main focal points of the event yet for my side it was non existent. Many of my customers asked where all the food trucks were. As far as the traffic and sales, I don’t know. I guess it just one of those hit or miss kind of things. Although several people did tell me they had no idea the festival was even going on.