Barbershop in the News

Women's Expo offers unique networking opportunities

Cantonsville, MD  March 9, 2011

CCBC-Catonsville campus offers 200 entrepreneurs


Approximately 200 female entrepreneurs and businesses with a pro-woman focus will gather on the Catonsville campus of the Community College of Baltimore County this weekend as the CCBC Women's Expo and Conference celebrates its 10th anniversary.



The March 12-13 event will feature a wide array of products, services, food, guest speakers and live music.


To participate in the Expo, a business must either be owned or run by women or provide opportunities for women, said Catonsville resident Patsy Anderson, the event's promoter and owner of the Women's Expo Forum.


Anderson said the event helps to build women's businesses by providing networking opportunities and a wide range of information and resources as well as giving the general public some unique shopping opportunities.


"It's a great way to promote our business here in Catonsville," said Maude Swearingen, owner of EmbroidMe, a business specializing in embroidery, promotional products, printing and apparel, at 6600 Baltimore National Pike, in Catonsville.


Swearingen, who will be participating in the event for the third time, said the Expo provides an opportunity to share business tips and potential customers with other business owners.


She said she refers her clients to other women business owners she meets at the Expo who provide services she doesn't, such as making signs or printing business cards.


"I feel like every year I make a lot of new friends," she said.


Anderson said she partially attributed the event's continued success to the current economy.


More women are pursuing second careers after losing their jobs or taking early retirements, she said.


"And very often that second career is coming from a place of passion," she said.


She said entrepreneurs had to be very resourceful and aggressive 10 years ago.


But the Internet has made it much easier for more people to start their own businesses, especially since many small businesses cannot afford large advertising campaigns.


Speakers at this weekend's event will touch on a range of subjects, from handwriting analysis to holistic practices and alternative medicine, from health and weight control to juggling family and business responsibilities.


Some of the Catonsville businesses and organizations represented are American Cancer Relay for Life Catonsville, Bay State Chiropractic, By Appointment Only, Luxury Sedan, Catonsville Ravens Club, Coffee News, Edible Arrangements, LA Hair Catonsville, Master Touch Photo, Stampin' Up, Strategic Victory Consulting and Catonsville author Rosanna Tufts.


Among the Arbutus area businesses to be represented are Ashtanga Yoga Maryland/ The Well Seasoned Woman, Bizness Concepts, Butt Cutter, Dixie Chicken, Gianni's Bistro and the Fractured Prune, Remax New Beginnings and Self Defense Solutions.


Seton Keough High School will give a gift to any alumna who stops by and says hello, according to Anderson.


There will also be an 11:15 a.m. performance by the Harbor City Music Company Show Chorus, a group of about 70 women who rehearse weekly in Brooklyn Park and perform statewide.


The group was named Division AA (mid-sized) Gold Medal Champion chorus of Sweet Adelines International, a worldwide organization of women singers, during an October competition in Seattle.


Catonsville resident Lori Dreyer, an Ohio native, joined the chorus after moving to the Baltimore area 21 years ago.


"I feel like I joined a family," said Dreyer, who said the group provided a sense of sisterhood and a "place to land" when she doesn't go home for holidays.


With the Expo's emphasis on women's organizations and female-owned businesses, Dreyer said the event is a "good fit" for the chorus. Read More--



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