I've been to quite a few trade shows before, but this one was an absolute hoot. It seems the more of these I attend, the more and more I enjoy them! The first stop on my list that I had to make was to see Mark and Theresa's MyFixitUpLife, which is my all time favorite home improvement radio show and podcast. These guys are the real deal, and they get the big names in the industry to stop by and talk with them. Plus, they're really good people! What can I say, redheads got to stick together!
Steve "Million Dollar Contractor" Fanuka dropped by and had a chat, along with Ty Pennington! Unfortunately Mike was booked solid during the convention and couldn't make it! Steve Fanuka loved my "MAKE IT RIGHT" shirt and told me to "tell Holmes Fanuka says cheers!"
I have to say, having attended other shows in the past, this show was very celebrity driven. Scripps Networks Interactive, the powerhouse behind DIY and HGTV, were very involved in the promotion of the IBS and KBIS, and therefore, there was an HGTV celebrity pretty much around every corner. Including this guy, who was very nice and surprisingly classy despite a lot of very rude people making rather tasteless remarks. Word to your mother.
Another person I was absolutely thrilled beyond words to meet was Scott McGillivray, who was hanging tight at the Roxul booth. I absolutely love this guy. And of course, Scott and Mike are buddies. He asked me how I was enjoying the show, and I told him that it was like Disneyland! He asked me what I did, and I told him I work for a solar company. Lastly, he asked me if I knew Mike was at the show, and I told him you betcha, at the CertainTeed booth from 3-4PM!
Later that day I ran into this guy, David Bromstad, who totally complimented my outfit. "I love the pink!" A professional designer thinks I have good taste... it doesn't get any better than that!
So around 2PM I made my way to the CertainTeed booth where I knew Mike was going to do his meet and greet. Being in the solar industry, I noticed the huge solar panel display, and I kept hearing the name of the company that I work for being bantered around. I started up a conversation with one of the guys in the booth, and he informed me that CertainTeed is affiliated with the company I work for! That was pretty exciting to me! About 30 minutes before Mike was set to come out, a line started to form and snake its way around the general area. It's no surprise to me that Mike can draw a big crowd. By the time that Mike came out, there were at least 100 in line or milling around waiting to meet him. Having seen the HGTV stars that I did that day, I can honestly say there was nothing like this! Mike is definitely a popular guy. He started by walking out and greeting everyone. He then gave a 5 minute biographical speech where he basically explained how he got into television and asked everyone if they are fans of the show and if they've seen the new show Holmes Makes It Right. Everyone cheered of course. I filmed most of Mike's speech, until my phone ran out of memory. Fortunately, I've seen other versions of this on YouTube.
I guess I could go on and on about how great it was to see Mike and how everyone was excited to see him. I could probably write an essay about what was going on in my head. After all, Mike is my hero, and he's so familiar to me, and I'm just another face in the crowd to him. That doesn't bother me, I'm happy to be one of his many cheerleaders! Words just don't cut it, so here's the picture. Hopefully you can see how absolutely joyful I am.
(PS -- I snuck a hug AND a peck on the cheek. I'm sorry, I just couldn't help myself! But I have a feeling Mike wasn't offended!)
And that was my short but sweet rundown of the International Builders' Show! Here's some video I took of Mike speaking. Unfortunately I didn't get the whole thing, but you'll get the gist...