A sparse crowd showed up for Thursday afternoon's opening of the Deseret News Home and Summer Living Show, but as the day grew on so did the crowds.
Keith West, Deseret News director of promotions, estimated that more than 20,000 people will attend the four-day show. "The afternoon crowds are relatively small, but by the evening this place is pretty busy," he said."We came early to avoid the crowds," said James and MarjorieKelson of Salt Lake City.
Sponsored in part by the Home Builders Association of Greater Salt Lake and the Newspaper Agency Corp., the show continues through Sunday at 5 p.m. and features just about anything a current or future homeowner could want.
More than 100 booths are displaying everything from aluminum siding to canned trout. Those interested in building can find out about doors, windows, roofing and even home plans. People not wanting to build can learn about buying, financing or fixing up the homes they already own. Information on kitchens, vacuums, carpet, shelving, air conditioning, water softeners and sewing machines can also be found at the show.
For the outdoor person there is information on fishing equipment, camping equipment, barbeques and patio furniture. Whether looking for a 7-foot Jacuzzi or a 32-foot swimming pool, you can find out about it at the show.
Most of those attending the show are doing so for entertainment reasons. They like the fact that they can learn about the products without feeling the pressure to buy. However, there were many people who came to the show hoping to see a specific item on display or to learn how to do a certain task around the house.
J.C. and Ellen Christensen, West Valley City, went to the show simply for an afternoon of entertainment. While at the show they enjoyed looking at the patio and landscaping products on display.
A retired couple from South Salt Lake said the show was an enjoyable way for them to "kill some time." They were attracted to the show was because it is free. "We've passed up a lot of auto and boat shows simply because they want too much money to get in," they said.
Don and Janet Jacobsen, Bountiful, as well as the Kelsons, said they went to the show to see what is new in the home-improvement market. "We paid a little bit more attention to the spas because we would like to get one some day," said Mrs. Jacobsen.
Emsley and Myra Phillips, Taylorsville, said they come to these kind of shows every chance they get. They were hoping to get some ideas for a patio at the show. "We've got a lot of ideas now, but now we just need the money to use them," they said.
And if you're not necessarily looking to buy something at the show, there are dozens of free items available. Drawings will be held to give away prizes ranging from a trip to Disneyland to a "Handyman Service for one full year." You could even win a "Glamour Makeover," if you think you need one.
Free prizes are being given away to anyone who wants to try their luck, or skill, in a putting contest. One of the most popular booths offers a free manicure. Everyone had his hand out at that booth.
And if that's not enough, at one booth you can get a cup full of "the world's greatest water."