WASHINGTON TOWNSHIP | From bottles of water to water softeners, from candles to candy, and from bed sheets to ghost hunters, the Porter County Fair commercial exhibits offered a little bit of everything for fairgoers.
Housed in the main building of the Porter County Expo Center, the commercial exhibits are a way for local businesses to reach out to the public with demonstrations, information and education.
"We're out here again this year to generate new interest in the sport of bowling and to promote youth bowling since they're the next generation of bowlers," said Ted Rosenquist, in-house coach at Westchester Lanes in Chesterton.
Rosenquist handed out cards for free games of bowling, while other vendors offered bowls of candy, paper fans on sticks, helium balloons, and demonstrations of percolating hot tubs or water running over roof shingles and gutter guards.
"We like to browse, and we like to come in here to cool off a bit," said Mike Cervik, of Kouts, with his wife, Jenny.
Chuck Laster and his wife, both of Hebron, stopped to view a cooking demonstration of Health Craft cook wear.
"We were walking by just looking around, and we decided to sit down and take a break," Laster said.
For Julie Hudson, a volunteer with Great Lakes Greyhound, helping to educate visitors by allowing them to engage with the nine greyhounds the rescue group brought out on Sunday is a great way to promote their cause.
"We get to explain about the breed, talk about the adoption process, and educate people on misconceptions about greyhounds," Hudson said. "People think because they used to race that they need a lot of exercise, but they're really big couch potatoes, and they just want to be loved."
The group offers plenty of educational materials, along with a photo book of grey hounds for adoption. They will be available every day of the fair in the commercial exhibits building, along with all of the other vendors who are eager to interact with the crowds.