by IvyLee Rosario
In its 28th year of Wholesale Promotion, the Norton Shows is gearing up for its next show. Located in the Smoky Mountains of Gatlinburg, Tennessee, and named the Best of Gatlinburg 2010 in the Promoters of Shows and Exhibitions category, there is no other place to be than at Norton’s for the best finds in the Apparel, Jewelry, Gift industries, and more. The family-run company has four shows per year, with its upcoming show being held from September 12-14 at the Gatlinburg Convention Center.
The event is wholesale cash-and-carry that promises immediate deliveries and orders to all of its buyers. Norton’s takes pride in being accessible, entertaining, and very accommodating for smaller businesses. “We are always available to our attendees,” said Nikke Norton, co-owner. “We are always on the show floor, and keep the show office open. There is a very laid-back, casual atmosphere to our show and we try our best to accommodate the needs of our buyers and vendors.”
Norton Shows are distinctive for their small touches to draw in the crowd. For example, Norton says they always try to feature an entertainment aspect to their show, such as in the past, when they had an Elvis impersonator attend. However, the true value of the Norton Shows is in the selection of vendors. Norton welcomed Mangator Designs last November, a maker of fine alligator-skin wallets, duffels and handbags, as well as other exhibitors including vendors of freshwater pearls. “We house everything from less expensive items to high-end merchandise,” said Norton, “plus we have a strong focus on gifts.”
The show has buyers attending from all 50 states, Central and South America, the Caribbean Islands and Canada. The average ratio of exhibitors to buyers is 10,000 to 21,000 for 500 to 800 booths. The Norton Shows offer a great opportunity for networking, exhibitors to service existing customers, as well as gaining more clients, meet people in different markets and buyers finding new suppliers that then form relationships over the years to come.
In order to attend the show, storeowners must have a business license in the industry; copies of three consecutive cancelled payroll checks, and both owners and buyers must have matching driver’s licenses. The Norton Shows offers hotel discounts, with information available online for those who plan on staying nearby for several show dates. For more information on the Norton Shows, call 865-436-6151 or visit www.nortonshows.com. The next and final show for Norton this year will take place from November 14-16.
PO Box 265
Gatlinburg, TN 37738