Mark Buerger of Patio Pools and Spas gets his company's display ready as preparations are made for today's opening of the three-day SAHBA 2013 Spring Home and Patio Show at the Tucson Convention Center.


The SAHBA Spring Home and Patio Show starts today at the Tucson Convention Center, with more than 300 participating exhibitors and vendors.

Health and wellness for consumers and their homes takes the Southern Arizona Home Builders Association stage with daily presentations on home safety, a healthy home environment, fitness and nutrition.

The home show's director, Amy McReynolds, said this year's show is bigger than in recent years. "The ballroom is completely sold out," she said of exhibitor spaces. "It hasn't sold out the last few years because of the economy."

She said the show features everything from cookware to crafts to lighting to pools and spas.

"It's about how you live," McReynolds said. "It's not just for homeowners."

There will also be opportunities to win prizes. Home Depot will hand out keys for its door display. If the key fits, consumers can win gift cards, equipment, discount coupons and more.

Athletic Club will be giving away free pedometers so attendees can track the number of steps they take at the show, and be entered in a drawing for an iPad.

Saturday is family day and has several presentations and activities. Michael's Arts and Crafts will do projects with kids, as will Home Depot. There will also be three Mad Science demonstrations.

"We wanted to put something out there for families so parents could come and actually talk to exhibitors, and keep the kids entertained," McReynolds said.

Local musical act Stone Avenue Band also will perform on Saturday.

Flame Connection, a local retailer for custom outdoor kitchens, will have an indoor and an outdoor exhibit, which includes cooking demonstrations.

"It's barbecue season," said Rob Wilson, owner of Flame Connection. "So people can see the barbecues and taste the food from the cooking demo."

Wilson said Flame Connection has been exhibiting at the home show for 12 years. "It's branding our name, so people remember Flame Connection. It creates awareness of us," he said.

Another local exhibitor, Cathey's Vac & Sew, has been participating in the home show for more than 20 years. Donny Cathey said he looks to accomplish two things at the show.

"One is to secure sales and do immediate business," Cathey said. "But the other part is the simple exposure" to more than 12,000 anticipated visitors.

Cathey's has two booths at the show. One will feature sewing machines and sewing products and will include representatives from two sewing machine companies doing demonstrations. The second booth will feature vacuums, central vacuum systems and home audio and theater systems.

Pima Animal Care Center will be offering adoptions at the home show, with pets costing no more than $50. That cost includes a rabies vaccination, licensing for one year, a microchip and spay or neuter services.

Tucson Water has been an exhibitor since the mid-1990s. Its staff will be on hand giving out free materials on water efficiency indoors and outdoors, plants and landscaping, water quality and reliability, rebate and incentive programs, and conservation-related items for children.

Another highlight of the spring show is Tucson Clean & Beautiful's Re-Used Materials Becoming Art, or RUMBA, competition, which features professional and aspiring recycling artists.

If You Go

• What: SAHBA's Spring Home and Patio Show

• When: 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. today and Saturday and 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Sunday.

• Where: Tucson Convention Center, 260 S. Church Ave.

• Cost: $8 adults; free for children 12 and younger; $4 military. $4 today for age 50 and over. Get a coupon for $2 at Parking is free in all TCC lots.

By The Numbers


Vendors participating


Anticipated visitors


Years of home shows


Show square footage


Pedometer giveaways


Home Depot keys


Show days

Contact reporter Angela Pittenger at or 573-4137.