The PCYC building in Huonville was filled to capacity last Saturday for the Huon Valley Business Expo. The event was organised by the Huon Valley Business Enterprise Centre, with the support of a dedicated team. David Moore of I Hate My PC together with his wife Susan (who writes the Huon View blog) were two such locals involved with planning and promoting the day.

Huon Valley Business - Expo

Huon Valley Business Expo

Huon Valley Business: All Together Now

The venue was fabulous as was the weather for the day, and a sizable crowd turned out to meet many local business owners. We had the chance to win $100 from Bendigo Bank, and we scored some drink holders from South Property Real Estate. Even the local Avon lady was there!

There’s no way we can mention every single stall holder in this article, so here’s just a small sample of the business owners we did meet. We’ll be writing feature articles about some of them in the future.

Huggables: Rhonda and John William Fibbens

Rhonda and John Fibbens from Geeveston shared a stall with two very different products. Rhonda makes and markets colourful stuffed toys that she’s dubbed “Huggables”. They were adorable! Rhonda’s husband is an illustrator who also works in period design and restoration. Together they are just starting to venture into the world of social media, so hopefully we’ll be able to find them on Facebook soon.

Huon Valley Business - Huggables

Huggables (Rhonda Fibbens) Illustrations (John William Fibbens)

Platinum Ridge Cherries: Glaziers Bay

Janelle is the very lovely business manager at Platinum Ridge, a family-owned cherry orchard overlooking the Huon River and Hartzview mountains at Glaziers Bay. From their location in southern Tasmania, they grow export-quality cherries for the Asian market and sell fruit online to the public. Olive oil and apples are grown on the picturesque property too, and Platinum Ridge also have a program for customers to rent their own cherry tree.

2Cow Milk: Mount Cygnet Dairy

The Direen Family own the Mount Cygnet Dairy which originally supplied milk to National Foods. When all the neighbouring dairy farmers moved on from the industry, the family remained as the only milk producers in the Huon Valley. It was then deemed by National Foods to be too expensive to collect milk from just their property, near Cygnet. So after a short break to regroup, they re-established their herd of Holstein Friesian and Jersey cows and started bottling their own brand of 100% natural, full-cream milk.

Fishing Gear: Adrenalin Flies

Glenn from Adrenalin Flies spent his first day on the job at the Huon Valley Business Expo, using the event to launch his new business, a “one stop shop for all things fly fishing“. The Szalman family moved from Victoria ten years ago after finding their dream home in the Huon Valley. It didn’t hurt that the fishing was pretty good in the region, either! After building up a weed-control business, Glenn will now be spending all his days working with something he’s really passionate about.

Tazorb and Bodyzorbs

Tazorb were on hand to provide some entertainment for (mainly) the kids with their big plastic balls. We watched as two kids were each strapped into a harness inside a large orb. The operator then rolled the ball and had the kids spinning end over end. The kids seemed to really enjoy it, and there was a queue of others waiting for a turn. Outside the PCYC, there were more kids wearing inflatable bodyzorbs, trying to knock each other senseless. And laughing about it.

Huon Valley Business - Tazorb

Tazorb entertains: Huon Valley Business Expo

The Amazing Ashton

Tasmania’s premier children’s entertainer and roving performer, The Amazing Ashton was kept busy with his crowd of adoring fans. Dressed in his colourful pirate costume, he juggled knives and balanced on his pirate ship as it rocked and rolled. He was very obliging as the kids yelled “higher, higher”. Then he put the knives away and had the kids juggling balls for themselves in no time.

Wall of Lollies: Geeveston

Leonie fromWall of Lollies was yet another Huon Valley business on a winner with the kids. With a stall loaded with coloured lollipops and jars of chocolate coated goodies, there’s no doubting why. Leonie has just opened a party room in her Geeveston store to offer something extra for families in the region. With the multitude of ice-cream flavours they sell by the scoop, there’s something sweet to keep both locals and tourists happy.

My Slice of Pie: Home Made

Finally, we’d like to mention Christine Bowden and her granddaughter Isabel. We really shouldn’t play favourites, but we had a really lovely time hearing about My Slice of Pie. Currently Christine sells her home grown, home made products from roadside locations on the Huon Highway and Dip Road in Grove. But she has some very big news: she’s soon to open a cafe selling her wonderful food. We checked out the location on the drive back to Hobart and WOW… what a view! We’ve already booked a table for the cafe opening in December, and we can’t wait to enjoy some more of that sweet, cherry pie.

Pie - My Slice of Pie, Grove

Cherry pie: Huon Valley Business Expo

One Stop Shop: Huon Valley Business

So that’s a very brief wrap up about some of the Huon Valley business owners we met on Saturday. It was a totally awesome idea to have all these people in the one place, and let the customers come to a one-stop-shop for the region. Hopefully Scott Dufty from the Huon Valley Business Enterprise Centre will pass on his expertise and we’ll be able to attend more events like this one.

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Map: Huon Valley Business Expo, Huonville Tasmania…

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