NEW ULM - Attendance remained strong Saturday at the Home and Self Improvement Show, as people from New Ulm and the surround communities toured the over 200 booths on display.
Tony Guggisberg, who is on the Home Show committee, said that it was the weather that kept the crowds high.
"It's perfect weather. It's cool so people want to come inside, but there's no snow or ice," said Guggisberg.
Staff photo by Josh Moniz
Jodi Huhm, 11, holds a bunny while Valley Properties agent Paula Kral helps. Valley Properties kept the bunny at their Home Show display as a market strategy. Kral said the bunny would be named on Sunday based what children suggest.
Guggisberg said the attendance was as good as or better than any previous Saturday attendance he had seen.
The booths employed a variety of display set ups to attract attention. The most common theme was Easter-oriented displays to celebrate the approach of spring.
Valley Properties, a New Ulm-based real estate company, had a bunny on display for children to hold. Valley agent Paula Kral said that the bunny was a marketing strategy to attract attention. She also said that they were going to name the bunny on Sunday based on names that children suggest.
Green Energy Products, LLC put out display examples of solar panels. This is the second year that Green Energy has attended the Home Show. The company is the premier solar and renewable energy supplier in Minnesota.
"We've been see big growth the last couple of years," said Jason DeSmet, the Green Energy employee running the booth.
Green Energy founder Tim Lipetzky said the increased interest in solar power has been tied to the increasing cost of utilities.
"It's a long-term investment that saves people money," said Lipetzky.
Lipetzky said that the biggest challenge solar energy has faced so far is people assumption that it is new or untested. He explained that the use of solar energy has been around for decades and that it only seems new because it is has become popular only recently.
Lipetzky gave a seminar on Friday and Saturday at the Home Show on the advantages of solar power. He will host another seminar today at noon.
The New Ulm Fire Department also had a booth at the show. A video on the importance of fire safety was played and firefighters handed out free batteries for smoke detectors. They also sold smoke detectors for $5.
The final day of the Home Show will go from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. today.
Josh Moniz can be