A couple of days ago I went to the Oncenter to pay my respects to this year’s version of the SOHO Business Show, aka SOHO Syracuse 2013. That stands for “small office/home office” in case you didn’t know. It used to be every October but they didn’t hold it last year and it looks like it’s switched periods with the major chamber business show… that is, if they’re actually having it this year.

SOHO01I like the Oncenter, although it’s so big that sometimes it feels pretty cavernous. They always hold this show in the main showroom and it’s basically a bunch of booths set up where businesses get to hock their wares and services, there’s lots of banks and investment organizations, most of the local chambers of commerce will have a presence and of course local and state organizations that offer assistance to small businesses.

For the first time they actually had some presentations in one of the corners, which is the same type of thing the main business show usually has. I only got to hear a small piece of one, that being put on by my buddy Todd Engel of Engel Law Offices, and I only heard it from afar because I was getting ready to leave for reasons I won’t disclose so I didn’t get to sit down & listen to any of it.

SOHO05Usually the SOHO show is a big more muted than the big show and this year was no exception. I often feel bad when I’m walking through the aisles looking at some of the businesses that are presenting that don’t have anyone stopping and talking to them and wonder whether they feel they’ve lost their money or not. Of course I’m not there for the entire show so it’s possible that they did do some business, enough to cover the expense of setting up a booth.

SOHO04I made it through all the booths in about 90 minutes. The only reason it took that long is because I did stop to talk to some of my favorite people and participated in some taste testing. For instance, there was Yummies Cheesecakes, who gave me a sample of peanut butter cup cheesecake on a stick; very tasty, and this comes from someone who usually hates cheesecake. Dinosaur BBQ was there again with some pulled pork & sauce, and for the first time that I can remember Speech’s candy was there giving out samples of chocolate covered potato chips; I loved both. I spent time talking to Theresa Cangemi of Medicare Made Simple and John Hunt of Movin’ 100 and my local consultant’s group.

SOHO02All in all, even if muted, I probably had the best time out of all of the SOHO shows I’ve ever attended and I even learned a few things here and there. What I especially learned is that the Oncenter is honoring black soldiers and veterans this month, and a couple of the images I’ve shown here, though a bit hard to see, are from their exhibit, which is spaced out but still something to see. Any small business that have never partaken of this should do it at least once; maybe next year…

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