Saturday September 7, 2013 / 10:00am to 6:00pmInternational Gem and Jewelry Show
General Admission Complimentary
How was your experience?
The comp tickets are actually $3 a piece after fees but not bad considering full price for all three days was $8 and a single day ticket was $6. I brought my mom and we had a BLAST! I thought we would be there a few hours, tops. We were there for 6 hours! Parking is $10 so bring cash. I thought it was worth it and there was plenty of parking. I read reviews of getting street parking that's free, but once you're there, you'll know what I mean about it being worth it. The venue is indoors and there are bathrooms on both sides so it was pretty convenient. No humongous lines to wait in. The food was on the right side and had things like fries ($3), cheeseburger and fries ($7), turkey burger, chicken tenders, hot dogs, fountain drinks, and beer. CASH only! There was a second area for food but I didn't check it out so I'm not sure what it sells. There are only a few round tables to eat at, but plenty of chairs so you can share tables with other guests. My mom and I ate at an off lunch time (2pm) so there was lots of seating and the lines were short. As for the selection of products, I was amazed. They had tools for jewelry making, packaging, displays, raw materials (like beads of all kinds), and finished products. The best thing about this place is that there are many vendors that sold the same or similar things. My mom and I went through most of the vendors prior to purchasing anything. They provide maps at the entrance so you can circle the vendors you like and make notes of prices, etc. so bring a pen! And bring cash! Many places will not charge you tax if you pay in cash and it's much easier to barter with. I bartered and got discounts on everything I bought! Some of the vendors were terribly rude. I mention this because at a place where everyone is selling virtually the same thing, I expected better customer service. If I didn't like their snippy remarks or lack of interest in answering a question about a product, I simply walked away and took my business elsewhere. Some vendors provided baskets/bowls/trays to hold the things you want to buy. Use it! Not only so you're not dropping small items everywhere, but because the vendors use it as a form of anti-theft device. Also, some vendors lamented that customers will look at something and just put it back in random areas. The pricing of products is confused when then next customer picks it up and sees it in the $2 basket instead of $4. The vendor now has to explain why it's a higher price. As this was my first time there, I don't know if it's done every time but as we were leaving, we were offered a complimentary re-entry pass for the next day. That means, $3 for 2 day entry! Enjoy!