Clayton County Economic Development Director Grant Wainscott explains the county’s University Station development Thursday to attendees at the Clayton County Chamber of Commerce Showcase Clayton Business and Community Expo.
JONESBORO Gina McCombs gently laid her face into a pillow of a massage chair Thursday and then relaxed while chiropractor Robert Alpert used a mechanical massager on her back muscles.
McCombs was one of several people who lined up to get a free massage at the Southmetro Chiropractic Center, Inc. booth at the Clayton County Chamber of Commerce’s Seventh Annual Showcase Clayton Business and Community Expo. The event, which was sponsored by Saint Leo University, included 55 businesses and community organizations which put on displays to let people know about the services they provide.
“I think this is great for the county because it gives businesses an opportunity to show off what they do, and it gives business owners and employees the ability to do some networking with other businesses in the area,” said McCombs, a certified public accountant with Jonesboro-based Loggins and Associates, PC.
While the annual event is a chance to build awareness of various businesses in the county, chamber officials said it is also an opportunity to bring a positive spotlight to a county that is often in the news for crime, bickering public officials and school accreditation issues.
The expo drew hundreds of people from across the county.
“It’s a positive outline and prospectus of what the county has to offer,” said chamber President Yulonda Beaufort.
The booths ranged from straightforward informational setups with poster boards and pamphlets at many stations, to bags of popcorn being handed out at the Morrow Business and Tourism Association’s station, to games, massages and health assessments.
Clayton County Board of Health spokesman Joel Hall said the county health department participated in the expo this year, after a hiatus of several years, because it wanted to raise community awareness of its offerings.
“It’s a good venue to show our information to people in a face-to-face format,” said Hall.
Some businesses decided to use food as a way to stick out in the minds of expo attendees.
Stockbridge-based Pin Strikes bowling alley even had a buffet set up for attendees.
The Chick-fil-A Dwarf House in Forest Park and the Chick-fil-A from Southlake Mall also joined together to serve as food sponsors for the event, according to Eric Stallings, the Dwarf House’s general manager.
Stallings explained this was the first year the Forest Park Dwarf House location has participated in the expo, and he said they agreed to do it in large part because of Chick-fil-A’s community-oriented philosophy.
“Being involved in the community is what we’re all about,” he said.