The Tahlequah Business Expo is three weeks away, and vendors are making plans to put their best feet forward on the big day.
The event is slated for Saturday, March 30, in the Herb Rozell Ballroom in the Northeastern State University Center, and is hosted by Tahlequah Chamber of Commerce's Leadership Class 14.
RJ's Salon owners Ruth Hannah and Jennifer Kruczek are participating in the Expo this year for the first time. The pair have owned the shop on Morgan Street for 13 years, and specialize in men's precision clipper cuts.
"We've been grooming Tahlequah, one man at a time, for 13 years," said Hannah. "We'll be there cutting hair for donations. All donations will go to help Leadership Class 14 with the splash pad project."
Leadership Class 14 committed to hosting the Expo annually until members raise enough money to help the Cherokee Nation and city purchase a splash pad for the community.
Kruczek said they hope by participating in the event, they'll also bring new business to the shop. The Salon was named "Best Place to Get a Haircut" in the Daily Press' "At Its Best" competition.
"We take care of men's grooming needs from birth to death," said Kruczek. "We trim eyebrows, beards, and cut hair."
In an earlier Daily Press report, Tahlequah Business Expo Coordinator Scott Rosenthal indicated space for the event is being filled quickly. Some of the recent additions include AT&T, Indian Capital Technology Center, 31 Gifts, and the Oklahoma United Methodist Circle of Care.
In addition to newcomers, the 2013 Expo will include some longtime participants, like Arvest Bank.
Arvest Bank Assistant Manager Josh Stafford said this is the bank's third year to offer a booth at the event.
"The Expo provides exposure in getting the Arvest name out there, both as a participant and a sponsor," said Stafford.
"It allows us to showcase our products and services -- some that people don't know we offer, such as mortgages, financial management and trust services, or even our 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. hours."
Stafford said Arvest's participation in the Expo will give attendees an opportunity to visit face-to-face with bank representatives.
"[The Expo] gives people a chance to ask questions, instead of just reading a brochure or something online," said Stafford. "It puts a face with a name, so when a customer comes to the bank, there is a friendly face they recognize if they ever have a need or a question."
Expo vendors will also be providing attendees with free items, as well as merchandise, in hourly drawings.
"We will have brochures and business cards for all of our services, cups, pens and candy," said Stafford. "The big thing we're giving away is a $50 Visa gift card, which visitors can sign up to win at the booth."
Stafford said he enjoys the Expo from a networking standpoint.
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