Thousands of people expected at Ogdensburg Expo, hoping to raise upward of $90,000 for OBGC
A raffle winner is drawn at the 2018 Expo event. Photo courtesy of OBCG.
BY ADAM ATKINSON
North Country This Week
OGDENSBURG – Up to 6,000 people are expected to turn out for the 43rd annual Ogdensburg Expo at the OFA Golden Dome March 22-24.
Last year’s event, the biggest fundraiser of the year for the Ogdensburg Boys and Girls Club (OGBC), brought in about $90,000, said Thomas Luckie Jr., club executive director.“For a weekend event in Northern New York, it’s a great fundraiser,” Luckie said.
The Expo features a packed exhibit hall at the dome at 1100 State St. with concessions, carnival games, exhibits featuring automobiles, boats, crafts and products of all kinds over the three-day event.
A full schedule of live entertainment, including several local music favorites, raffles and other activities are featured as well.
Attendees come to look at boats, or other products, hear music, support the club, or just to meet friends and get out of the house at the end of winter, Luckie said.
The money raised from the expo helps support a quarter of the club’s $360,000 operating budget and programming which provides school age activities and sports leagues for local youth at a membership cost of only $6 a year. And, that low membership fee is waived for those who can’t afford it.
Luckie said about 550-600 children will attend daily club programs during the peak months of the summer, and it is not unusual for 100 youngsters to go to the club after school during the academic year.
“A lot of people realize how important the club is to the community,” Luckie said.
Luckie credits the success of the venture to the almost 400 volunteers that lend a hand for the Expo in planning stages, which begins as early as September the previous year, and during the event.
“A lot of people who volunteer have been impacted by the club over the years,” he said. “We’ve always been blessed with volunteers.”
The director also praised the area businesses who set up vendor stands every year, those who donate prizes for the expo raffles, and the school for letting the organization use the dome for the venue.
“We are fortunate,” said the director. “It’s just a perfect venue.”
Luckie, whose father Thomas Luckie Sr. was executive director before him, has been at literally every expo since the 70s. “I was going to the first ones when I was in high school,” he said.
The director said all of the vendor spots on the main floor were filled, but there were still some spaces available in the other expo showcase areas. To participate in the Expo as a vendor or exhibitor, call 315-393-1241 to reserve a space, or email [email protected].
Admission to this year's Expo is $5 per adult, $4 per child, and $20 for a family of 5 or more. The cover price pays for admission to the exhibit and craft area as well as free entertainment.
The OBGC was established in 1964 to serve boys of the Ogdensburg area to provide them with educational, recreational, social skills and other positive traits. Admitting its first ever girl member in 1975, today the Ogdensburg Boys and Girls Club serves more than 1,500 youth from Ogdensburg and St. Lawrence County, through membership and community outreach. The club features a staff of 3 full time and 12 part time employees.
For more information about the club and its youth enrichment programs, log on to www.obgclub.com, or call 315-393-1241.
The main stage entertainment schedule for this year’s expo is:
Friday, March 22
3 p.m. -- Expo opens
3:30 p.m. -- Ribbon Cutting Opening Ceremonies- Star Spangled Banner
4 p.m. -- OFA Jr. Jazz Band
4:30 p.m. -- Julies Dance Studio
6 p.m. -- OBGC Stepping with Sydney and Club Talent
6:30 p.m. -- OFA Jazz Band
7:45-9 p.m. TBA
Saturday, March 23
10 a.m. -- Expo opens
10:05 a.m. -- Lighthouse Band
10:30 a.m. -- OFA Middle School Band
11:30 a.m. -- OBGC Stepping with Sydney and Club Talent
12 p.m. -- St. Johns Conservatory Players
1 p.m. -- Ogdensburg Dance Studio
2 p.m. -- Father Dennis and the Faithful
3 p.m. -- Deja Blue
4 p.m. -- 95.3 Wolf Down Hot Dog Eating Contest
5 p.m. -- Julies Dance Studio
6:45-8 p.m. -- Pat Duffy and Friends (Aeonian)
Sunday, March 24
12 p.m. -- Expo Opens
12 p.m. -- Band Room Band
1 p.m. -- Live Auction
1:45 p.m. -- Julies Dance Studio
3:15 p.m. -- Starlight’s
4 p.m. -- Grand Finale Drawings