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Sunday, January 13, 2013

It's county fair (organizing) time for convention goers at the Amway Grand Plaza Hotel


Juggler Tim Salisbury performs in the Kids Showcase Friday, Jan. 11, 2013 in the Imperial Ballroom in the Amway Grand Plaza Hotel. The Michigan Association of Fairs and Expositions held the Kid Friendly Showcase for the second time during their 128th annual convention. (Sally Finneran | MLive)
from: mlive.com
By Jim Harger
January 12, 2013
GRAND RAPIDS, MI – As “The Great Bretsky” levitated a girl onstage in the Imperial Ballroom, Jerry Spencer and Clancy Aerts were not trying to figure out how the popular magician pulled off his trick as they watched from the back of the room at the Amway Grand Plaza Hotel.
Clancy and Aerts were trying to decide which acts to book for the Oceana County Fair Days they will stage eight months from now in Hart.
 

Ventriloquist Tom Smith emcees the Kids Showcase Friday, Jan. 11, 2013 in the Imperial Ballroom in the Amway Grand Plaza Hotel. The Michigan Association of Fairs and Expositions held the Kid Friendly Showcase for the second time during their 128th annual convention. (Sally Finneran | MLive)
“We’re thinking about signing something for Children’s Day,” said Spencer as they watched the “Kids Friendly Showcase.”
Spencer, who has been involved with the Oceana County Fair for nearly 50 years, said getting family-friendly entertainment will be a key to their success at this summer’s event. Their 141-year-old event is one of the longest continuously running county fairs in Michigan, Spencer said.
Spencer and Aerts were among 1,400 fair organizers, vendors and entertainers who attended the Michigan Association of Fairs and Expositions annual convention at the hotel this week. The three-day convention ends Saturday, Jan. 12.
 
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Magician Bret Beaudry performs in the Kids Showcase Friday, Jan. 11, 2013 in the Imperial Ballroom in the Amway Grand Plaza Hotel. The Michigan Association of Fairs and Expositions held the Kid Friendly Showcase for the second time during their 128th annual convention. (Sally Finneran | MLive)
Attendees like Spencer and Aerts were treated to hospitality suites, dinners and exhibition tables that offered to bring their events everything from motorcycle thrill shows, tractors pulls and clowns to portable toilets, grandstands and insurance coverage.
The “Kids Friendly Showcase” is a relatively new feature for the convention, which has been held for 128 years, said Larry Bush, general chairman of the Swartz Creek Hometown Days and organizer of the showcase.
read more:
http://www.mlive.com/business/west-michigan/index.ssf/2013/01/its_county_fair_organizing_tim.html

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