The Santa Clarita Valley Chamber of Commerce’s Business Expo made its return on Wednesday, allowing businesses to once again interact with the community face-to-face at the Hyatt Regency Valencia.
“I think the Expo has always been kind of the heart of the business community events for what this is, and it’s nice to have it back,” said John Musella, a spokesman for the SCV Chamber of Commerce.
The Business Expo has been a Santa Clarita staple since 1985. Members of the community are able to go around and interact with the city’s businesses at set up booths.
“It’s a great business-to-business opportunity in Santa Clarita, as well as the business-to-consumer opportunity to show off your services and what you’re selling,” said Musella.
The last in-person Business Expo was in 2019, before the COVID-19 pandemic.
As Musella said, the event also serves as a way for businesses to create connections with other local businesses. This opportunity allows for the business community to not be alienated as a single business, but rather be connected as a community to learn and support one another.
“We believe that every business is critical to the success of this community,” said Claudia Dunn-Martinez, a spokeswoman for UCLA Health. “It’s an amazing community that comes together to support each other.”
The event was free to all those who wanted to attend. Eighty businesses were present and Musella estimated that around 600 people had attended by the halfway mark of the event.
The Business Expo originated as a three-day weekend, and an outdoor event. Musella believes that now limiting the event to a four-hour time slot on a weekday allows for more businesses and community members to attend.
Rusty Parr, owner of AV Party Rentals, has had his business in the SCV for over 50 years. He was one of the few businesses present to have been there for the very first Business Expo.
“This is a great opportunity to connect with them (businesses),” said Parr.
Parr expressed that having his business in the SCV for as long as it has been has not been the easiest.
However, over the course of 50 years, the SCV community has stayed at his side and allowed him to keep his doors open.
“We’ve been very lucky,” said Parr. “The community has been really good with us.”