Most successful home improvement projects begin with a little legwork.
This weekend, that legwork could take the form of a stroll through Westerner Park, where the Central Alberta branch of the Canadian Home Builders’ Association will be staging its 36th annual Red Deer Home Show.
More than 300 exhibitors are booked for this year’s event, which runs from Friday to Sunday.
“We not only sold out but have an extensive waiting list this year,” said Home Show chair Lori Erickson, who is sales manager at Erickson Homes (formerly Landmark Homes) and first vice-president of the Canadian Home Builders’ Association — Central Alberta branch.
Spread across the Parkland, Prairie and Stockmens pavilions, this year’s exhibitors will run the gamut from indoor to outdoor construction, and from decorating to landscaping. Erickson said this will allow home-owners and prospective home-owners to review their choices quickly and easily.
“It’s a great opportunity for people, if they’re considering any changes in their life, to see what their options are, and locally what the various people can do for them.”
This will include insights from experts, including several who will make formal presentations during the show.
Damon Bennett of HGTV’s Holmes Makes It Right and Holmes Inspection will take to the stage Saturday at 11:30 a.m. and 3:30 p.m. He’ll speak about renovation do’s and don’ts, and provide home inspection tips.
Terry Hollman of Canadian Closets will talk about home organization and storage; Ellen Walker of Ellen Walker Designs will discuss designing with function, flow and feeling; and Rene Michalak of the Canadian Association of Rainwater will share his insights into rainwater harvesting.
Also on hand will be Carol Kelly and Otis the Owl from Medicine River Wildlife Centre, and local entertainer Flyin’ Bob.
The Red Deer Home Show playhouse raffle will raise money for Central Alberta Woman’s Outreach Society’s Julietta’s Place, a facility for women seeking to escape domestic violence.
Last year, about 11,000 people took in the Home Show. Erickson expects strong numbers again this year, despite the current economic slowdown.
“I think builders are still selling, and interest rates are still very good.”
The Canadian Home Builders’ Association — Central Alberta is also preparing to launch a new event this fall: the Red Deer Home Renovation Show.
“We’re already gaining lots of interest in that,” said Erickson of the new event, which is scheduled for Oct. 30 to Nov. 1.
The Home Renovation Show will follow a similar format to the Home Show, but will provide a slightly different perspective, she added.
“We’re hoping to draw in those trades that are more specific to renovations.”
This weekend’s Home Show will run from noon to 8 p.m. on Friday, 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. on Saturday, and 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Sunday.
Admission is $10 for adults and $8 for seniors, with children under 12 who are accompanied by an adult admitted for free. Westerner parking charges will be in effect.