Energy expo returning to Ponoka fair

Central Alberta’s energy sector may have softened, but that won’t prevent the Ponoka and District Chamber of Commerce and EnCana Corp. from showcasing the industry on April 24 and 25.

Central Alberta’s energy sector may have softened, but that won’t prevent the Ponoka and District Chamber of Commerce and EnCana Corp. from showcasing the industry on April 24 and 25.

For the second consecutive year, an Energy Expo will be part of the annual Ponoka Trade Fair.

Barry Neath, manager of the Ponoka Chamber, said EnCana’s participation at last year’s trade fair proved to be a big hit. The company brought in staff and equipment, and provided information about the oil and gas industry.

“They had probably four rigs outside and a lot of the equipment that goes with that,” said Neath.

EnCana also sponsored much of the entertainment at the trade fair.

“They wanted to show that they were part of the community,” said Neath, adding that the public’s reaction to the company was “very positive.”

That set the stage for EnCana’s return this year, with Quicksilver Resources Inc. a supporting sponsor.

As for the Ponoka Trade Fair, it will again feature a broad range of exhibitors, said Neath.

“There’s probably 50 per cent local and 50 per cent from out of town,” he said, adding that this year’s show has sold out despite the slow economy.

A farmer’s market is also held as part of the event, and as of Friday 85 tables had been booked.

“That’s the best ever,” said Neath.

A pirate theme has been adopted for this year’s Ponoka Trade Fair, with treasure hunts, pirate games, live entertainment and an “extreme bungee jump.”

Hours of operation will be 3 to 9 p.m. on Friday and 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Saturday, with the trade fair and Energy Expo to be held at the Ponoka Arena Complex at 4410 54th St.

Admission is $4 for adults, $2 for youths six to 16, and free for children. Families can get in for $10.

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