Home and Garden show opens

Wednesday, March 7th 2001, 12:00 am
By: News On 6

Tulsa's home and garden show kicks off this week and for many, this is the first real opportunity to prepare for spring, now just a couple of weeks away.

For many businesses the home and garden show is a significant chunk of their yearly sales. But as KOTV's Sean Mossman reports, the slowing economy is causing some uncertainty.

Vendors work fanatically to put the finishing touches on displays for this weekend’s home and garden show. Including Mark Rattarree, whose Arlington, Texas rug business relies on shows like this. He says he's confident that sales will be high this weekend. "At this particular sale, yes, because they put so many people through the building. As a whole, I'm like everybody else. I'm not sure what the year's gonna hold."

But, an estimated 100,000 customers can make one forget about the rest of the year. There are vendors who want to extend an already good business year. Terrell's Heating and Air has seen an increase in new unit sales as gas prices have skyrocketed. This is their first year at the show. Owner Brent Terrell says, "it's a way for us to get our newer product out there and some of the stuff that wasn't as popular the last two years because gas was cheap in Oklahoma. Now it's become a bigger issue."

Then there's the high ticket, luxury items, like pools and spas. Tulsa's Casablanca Spas says this weekend will make-up about 20% of their yearly sales. Mainly because the event is held on county property and buyers don't have to pay city sales tax on purchases. Randy Kennon with Casablanca Spas says, "they come with money in their pockets, ready to purchase. Most of them know that if they do buy during this weekend there's tremendous savings. In fact, alot of them won't buy anything in February or January. They wait because they know the home and garden show is coming up."

So despite the toll energy costs and a dipping stock market have taken on consumers, vendors remain optimistic about their big weekend.