Rome Home Show kick-off at Kennedy Arena

ONE OF MANY BOOTHS — Ed Bielby, owner of Ed & Sons Contracting, Vernon, sets up an Ecoshield window at his Rome Home Show display booth that opens tonight and extends through Saturday and Sunday. Ed uses all local materials to complete his jobs. (Sentinel photo by John Clifford)

The Rome Area Chamber of Commerce’s 37th annual Rome Home Show kicks off tomorrow at its new location — Kennedy Arena.

The two-day show runs Saturday and Sunday. The new venue — a switch forced by the closure of the New York State armory on Black River Boulevard — has double the floor space at 17,000 square feet. Building on last year’s theme, ‘Self-sufficiency for Home and Garden,’ the focus is emphasizing affordable and satisfying seasonal solutions for the do-it-yourselfer, those looking for products and services from reliable professionals or people just looking for a place for family fun.

Admission is free this year, thanks to sponsors AmeriCU Credit Union, Carbone Auto Group, First Source Federal Credit Union, and Joe Tahan’s Furniture. In addition, support for not-for-profit organizations to exhibit at the show comes from NBT Bank, Integrys Energy Systems, Beacon Federal, Brush-On by Ed, Townsquare Media, Ridge Street Depot, The Printed Word, Professional Technologies and Rome chamber board members.

Approximately 100 vendors will be available 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Saturday and 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Sunday to showcase new products, explain new services and give advice for home improvement, garden, lifestyle and leisure projects.

For children, there will be a bounce house at the AmeriCU Fun Zone, as well as coloring projects, cartoon characters on hand, the children’s ID program, balloon animal creation and blood pressure screening. There will also be a booth for the chamber’s birthday with 1912-era games, a Jervis booth for games, books and library card sign-up, and a sneak peek at the Rome Art and Community Center’s August Renaissance Festival and Artisan Faire. Check out for schedule times and dates.

The chamber is also offering an Apple iPad 3 as a door prize. Tickets will be sold exclusively at the show, all day Saturday and until 2:30 p.m. Sunday; one for $5 or three for $10. The winner will be announced at 3 p.m. Sunday. The winner does not have to be present to win. There will also be two 50/50 raffles, with one drawing each day. One ticket for $1, three for $2 or an arm’s length for $5. Ticket sales will end Saturday at 4 p.m. and the winner to be announced at 4:30. Ticket sales will end Sunday at 2:30 p.m. and the winner will be announced at 3. The winner does not have to be present to win, but hold on to the ticket. Winning numbers will be posted on the chamber website.