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Farm Show represents the beginning of what many local businesses hope will be a big year

Updated: Friday, January 3 2014, 09:39 PM CST
Reported by Kyle Rogers:

HARRISBURG -- The Farm Show means big bucks for Central Pennsylvania.  While a half million of you will head there in the days to come, the impact the Farm Show Complex has on our economy is big.

This year though, officials say things are looking up after recovering from the loss of one its bigger events last year.

No doubt about it, the Farm Show is a cash cow in Central PA.

But you’ll remember last year when the Eastern Sports and Outdoors Show was cancelled, it was a big blow to our local economy. Some say the area lost out on $80 million to local businesses.

Friday night, as the Farm Show gets underway, officials look forward to a good season.

It’s Friday night at the farm show and it’s only the beginning.
 
“It’s our biggest week of the year and our biggest show of the year,” stated Patrick Kerwin with the PA Farm Show Complex.

More than half a million of you, from near and far will hit the complex.

“It's usually a crowd everywhere and you can be standing in the middle and there's people all around you and there's never an open space,” explained Rylee Smith, who loves the food.

While waiting is no fun, the long lines are a good thing.
 
“I talked to a fellow who said he slipped on the snow on his way to Friendly's so there's a good example of how the impact spreads throughout the community,” Kerwin told us.

A poor slip for that guy, but a pick-up of millions of bucks generated in our area is a boost to restaurants, hotels and even car sales.

For Farm Show Complex officials, they’re optimistic now. Especially after bouncing back a year after the Eastern Sports and Outdoor Show cancelled, a loss of millions.

“We were very fortunate that we've been able to capture more convention type business,” Kerwin addressed.

But the big business, at least in the food court, helps for apple growers research, too!
“It all goes back to research to support people making us really competitive fruit growers on the national stage,” commented apple grower Ben Wenk.

Grown local, and staying local.

“It’s great to try food that's fresh and you know that it's local and feel good about supporting it,” commented Chris Lopez.

“People are so friendly and open and warm so people coming to Central PA and get out and meet with the community, they have a pretty good experience, it's a great thing and helps us!” Kerwin concluded.

Already this year, the Farm Show Complex has more than 300 events scheduled, several conventions and they hope it’ll continue.

Friday night, the food court opened up, that alone in recent years has brought in $2 million.Farm Show represents the beginning of what many local businesses hope will be a big year


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