A lot has changed in Chesterfield in the past 20 years, but the is hoping that one thing hasn't: they still want to throw a business expo where attendees are able to see every booth.
When the expo began 20 years ago, there were 10 vendors. At Thursday's event, there will be about 80. Still, that's small enough that it's not overwhelming, said Julie Jackson, the Chamber's director of marketing and public relations.
"The Chamber is bigger, Chesterfied is bigger. The community expanded and the (Chesterfield) Valley grew. We had to expand to include that growth, but we want to make sure the expo feels intimate," Jackson said.
This year's expo features local businesses, school districts, and several restaurants—including , , , River City Catering, and —who will be serving samples. Vendors are encouraged to have interactive booths. For example, there will be chiropractors and massage therapists, Jackson said.
Most of the preparation for the expo is finished. Stella Moritz, the Chamber's director of special events, is working to set everything up at the before vendors arrive on Thursday to set up their booths.
The event is free and open to the public. Usually about 1,000 people attend, Jackson said. Anyone can come to network with business owners and other community members. In many cases, she said, it's a good way to make connections—sometimes the leaders of the company are at their booths.
"(The vendors) are people who are active in the community and want to see it succeed," Jackson said. "Sometimes you can go to those big expos in the America's Center and you get overwhelmed. At our expo, the vendors are all members of the Chamber and you can see everyone you want."
The is from 4 to 7:30 p.m. Thursday at the Doubletree Hotel, 16625 Swingley Ridge Rd. Admission is free.
Editor's note: Patch is a member of the Chesterfield Chamber of Commerce and will have a booth at this year's expo.