The 10th annual Maumelle Business Expo kicks off at 11:30 a.m. tomorrow, Thursday, Oct. 11 and runs until 5:30 p.m. The event will be held at the Jess Odom Community Center, 1100 Edgewood Drive in Maumelle and is jointly sponsored by the Maumelle Area Chamber of Commerce and the city of Maumelle. Eighty-two local area businesses, organizations and food vendors will be showcasing their goods and services to the community. The event is free to the public and attendees will have the opportunity to register for numerous door prizes.

"Exhibiting businesses have demonstrated their commitment to serving our community through investment in the Maumelle Area of Commerce and participation in the Expo event," said Julianne Cole, Executive Director of the Maumelle Area Chamber of Commerce. "Keeping our local economy strong by shopping area businesses first is important," Cole said. "In fact, promoting a favorable business climate for its membership and the community is the number one goal of the Maumelle Area Chamber of Commerce; and we believe the annual Maumelle Expo is a great tool in achieving that goal," Cole said.

Those attending the Expo event on Thursday, Oct.11 can expect to learn more about the goods and services available to them in the area. Many of the exhibitors will not only provide information, but also offer attendees specials and door prizes.

"There will be a $1,000 cash grand prize up for grabs as well as a TV, an Apple iPhone, weekend getaway trips, gift cards and many more exciting prizes," Cole said.

Flu shots will also be available at the Maumelle HealthMart and Pharmacy booth at the Expo event.

Representatives from many of Maumelle’s city offices and departments will also be on hand to provide information and answer questions about living and working in Maumelle.

Judy Keller, director of Community and Economic Development for the city said, "There are numerous reasons that Maumelle is one of the fastest growing cities in Arkansas — it’s location, the safe environment, diverse shopping and dining, as well as other reasons like the people who live and or work here!"

Last year’s Maumelle Expo drew in more than 1,000 attendees, Cole said. This year the chamber hopes to exceed that number by encouraging anyone in central Arkansas to attend the event and learn more about the organizations that serve the local Maumelle economy.

— Bill Lawson