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Tinley Convention Center Hosts First Show Following Expansion Efforts

The Tinley Park Home Show, featuring 160 exhibitors Friday, Saturday and Sunday, was the first big draw after a major expansion effort.

The never-ending joy and agony of home improvement and upkeep will soon shift into high gear with the arrival of spring. What better place to prime the pump for Southland residents addicted to HGTV and DIY network television shows than the Tinley Park Home Show at the Tinley Park Convention Center.

Now in its 11th year, this past weekend's show was the first in the newly expanded Tinley Park Convention Center and featured 160 vendors, 30 more than last year.

The SouthtownStar, a sponsor along with the Southland Convention and Visitors Bureau, was there Sunday for the remodeled convention center's debut.

“You sure get a lot of ideas coming here,” Oak Forest's Ed Samson told reporter Mike Nolan. “But sometimes what you really want to do and what you can afford to do are two different things.”

Mark and Joyce Youngbrandt, of Tinley Park, wanted to get a peek inside the bigger convention center but also do some research for a kitchen remodeling project they’re cooking up.

They’ve lived in their home 18 years and said the kitchen has a “worn, well-used” look that could use some updating.

Samson said he and his wife, Jolene, have put off redoing a bathroom that looks outdated.

“It’s more of a guest bathroom, so it’s not our main bathroom, which we did a couple years ago,” he said. “We’re looking for some ideas but don’t want to go crazy.”

With the recession's lean years, home-improvement businesses were struggling to find customers and attendance at the show tapered off. Along with more exhibitors, organizers said, attendance picked up this year.

Village officials hope the convention center, doubled in size with 58,000 additional square feet of floor space at a cost of $18 million to $19 million, will provide a lift to the local economy.

The next event will be the Tinley Park Brew & Vine Fest on April 9.

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