On Dec. 7, members of the Battle community came out to support the Future Business Leaders of America (FBLA) vendor fair. The fair has been put on for many years around Christmas time and allows people to shop for last minute gifts during the holidays. Among the vendors, people can buy health care items, decor, and other small items and help the FBLA chapter with their future projects.
The Battle FBLA has put on a successful fair for many years but for Sawyer Wade, the new lead adviser of FBLA, it was a nerve racking day.
“Melanie Leary established the FBLA Craft Fair. She set up a great tradition that was hard to follow,” Wade said.
Even though Leary was not there, Wade said he thought it was important to host the vendor fair and follow her footsteps.
“The fair is a great way for students to participate in a hands-on event,” Wade said. “Not only did FBLA students run the concessions, help vendors set up their booths, create marketing materials, and collaborate with their peers, but they also observed over 40 vendors run their own businesses.”
The organization strives to provide hands-on experience within the business industry through competitions, conferences, and more. The money raised during the event helps students attend those events. Cindy Thomas, customer, said she continues to come back for many reasons.
“I always love to attend the fair. It is nice to see all the crafts and to support the club. There’s always something interesting to find and it’s always a good time.”
John Hixon, member of FBLA, said he appreciates the people who continue to show support to FBLA. He said the money received has allowed him to have many opportunities within the industry he hopes to pursue in the future.
“FBLA helps me prepare for my future. I want to own a business someday, so FBLA means a lot to me,” Hixon said. The fair allows us to continue the club so I’m happy we do it every year.”
Despite a few hundred shoppers and lots of positive comments, Wade said he believes there are still ways to improve in the future.
“I have heard many positive reviews from vendors and visitors at this year’s event. Every year, we receive constructive feedback for what to do next year. After listening to their ideas, it’s clear what needs to be done to make the event even better for the next holiday season,” Wade said.
There is no set date for next year’s Vendor Fair; however, Battle plans to continue the tradition for many years.