Local businesses on the Fast Track in 2020, Bench Made takes top honors in annual show

Bassett Furniture Industries Inc.’s Bench Made display won the “Best in Show” ribbon Wednesday at Fast Track 2020. (By Brandon Martin)

By Brandon Martin

Bassett Bench Made took top honors with the “Best in Show” ribbon at Fast Track 2020.

Bassett Physical Therapy won the “Exhibitor’s Choice” ribbon as Fast Track 2020 concluded Wednesday.

Bassett Physical Therapy won the “Exhibitor’s Choice” ribbon.

The winners for the best non-profit booths were Martinsville City Public Schools in first place, Henry County Public Schools in second place, and Piedmont Community Services rounding out the top three. Winners for the best for-profit booths were New South Metals in first place, The Landmark Center in second, and Lawless Welding and Fabrications, Inc. in third.

Fast Track 2020 kicked off on March 3 with VIP night at the former Compton Wood Products facility in the Patriot Centre Industrial Park.

The event, hosted by the Martinsville-Henry County Chamber of Commerce, was themed “Best of the Decade, 2010 – 2019,” and plenty of vendors and non-profit participants were on deck to promote their businesses and organizations.

A crowd shot of attendance at Fast Track 2020 on Wednesday. The two-day annual event showcases local industry, businesses and nonprofit agencies. (By Debbie Hall)

Sharon Shepherd, deputy director of the chamber, said that the venue was packed with approximately 2,000 people on the first night.

“I thought it was a huge success,” she said. “From talking to some of the exhibitors, they were very pleased as well. This gave them the opportunity to come face-to-face with their customers and those conversations will hopefully lead to more business and promotion for their companies.”

This year marked the first time the showcase was held at the new location at 901 Hollie Drive, and the space allowed for more than 120 exhibitor areas.

Shepherd said the new location played a big part in the event’s overall success as well.

“The openness was a big thing for the exhibitors,” she said. “It gave them plenty of space to set up so they could properly market themselves with their booths and the folks attending were also really pleased. They weren’t too cramped and the bigger aisles allowed for people to move around easily without trampling over one another.”

The Martinsville City School’s mascot Lug Nut made an appearance at Fast Track 2020

While the exhibitors mingled on the first night, the second night was set aside for the public to have a chance to see what businesses and services are available to them.

The event helps the chamber show the growth of industry in the surrounding areas, according to Shepherd, who added attendance at the show normally averages about 5,000 people between the two nights, with the number varying in terms of popularity for each night.

 

 

 

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