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Businesses to hold first Buford expo

BUFORD - The Buford Business Alliance is going green for its first Visit Buford Day Expo, scheduled for July 12 at the Gwinnett Environmental and Heritage Center. Though primarily a showcase of local businesses, the Expo will also be a family-oriented event, including outdoor kids' activities, such as rock climbing and a moonwalk.

"It's an opportunity for businesses to market themselves to the locals," said Tim Koenning, president of the Buford Business Alliance. "It came from the idea that there are a lot of members who could not host a monthly event."

The Gwinnett Environmental and Heritage Center, the first certified "green" building in the county, will play host to the activities of the day. Including environmental demonstrations for kids, such as Wayne's ECO Train rides, there will be art activities and an opportunity to meet the Buford Majic basketball team. The center will also show "The Blue Planet," a 30-minute movie about water conservation, throughout the day.

"Everybody's talking about green now," Koenning said. "We want to bring attention to the environmental center's beautiful facilities."

BBA members, about 220 Buford businesses, will hold booths during the day, and several restaurants will provide food samplings for sale. In addition, local merchants and artists will sell their wares as part of the expo.

"We have everything from chiropractors to banks to hair salons," Koenning said. He also said the BBA, an organization that brings together Buford residents and businesses by putting on events, hopes to bring attention to the city through the expo.

The event will be free and will take place from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. For more information, go to www.visitbuford.com.