By Freeholder Director Tom Arnone
This year’s MADE IN MONMOUTH ANNUAL EVENT now in its second year surpassed last year’s expectations and proved to be a win-win for both Monmouth County vendors and shoppers alike. The second annual ”Made in Monmouth” was held this past Saturday, September 28, 2013 at Monmouth University in West Long Branch. The event took place from 10:00 a.m. until 4:00 p.m.
This event was a proactive approach originated as a way to give Monmouth County Vendors an opportunity to display and sell their products. All products were made in Monmouth County and showcased an array of amazingly well crafted products. Many of the vendors were true artists and the creativity brought forth had no end.
As liaison to the Department of Economic Development, it gave me great pride as I walked around with my fellow Board Members and had an opportunity to meet and speak with the many vendors who participated in this fantastic event.
There were approximately 140 vendors in all with more than 2000 shoppers in attendance for the day.
Furthermore, the response to Made in Monmouth has been nothing but positive. The Monmouth County Department of Economic Development has received a significant influx of phone calls and/or emails from vendors. Each of these expressed how much they truly appreciated the opportunity to display and sell their products and thanked the county for creating and providing a forum in which they were able to market their goods to new customers.
Additionally, vendors were able to make connections with each other in as much as they have discussed the possibilities of joint marketing, joint promotions and to also buy products from one another.
A special thank you must go out to our dedicated Monmouth County staff; in particular the entire Economic Development team fervently led by Executive Director, John Ciufo and Director, Amy Fitzgerald, and to our Public Information department who did a phenomenal job promoting the event in the interest of our Monmouth County vendors.
It is with great enthusiasm that I report the second annual Made in Monmouth was such a huge success. I look forward to the next Made in Monmouth and to initiating many new and exciting ways to help small businesses not only thrive within our county but remain in our county. As I already mentioned, this is a very proactive approach set forth to help existing small business owners as well as to attract new businesses to Monmouth County. It is with perseverance and tenacity that I will continue to utilize this same type of proactive approach to assist small businesses throughout all of Monmouth County.