Preparations for High Point Market underway

HIGH POINT, N.C. -- Downtown High Point is getting ready for the fall furniture market on Saturday.

The effects of Tropical Storm Michael are not making it easy.

"It's made it a lot more difficult to get things done, especially with the crowds coming in tomorrow. Really not what we wanted,” said Joshua Hernandez, a showcase goer.

The market brings in people from all over the country and market officials hope to keep high attendance numbers even with the storm passing through.

"Over 180 buildings. We expect about 75,000 people but who knows because of the weather but certainly fingers crossed,” said Tom Conley, market CEO.

The goal is to stay on top as the premier supplier of furniture showcases in the country. The previous owners of the market started a Las Vegas showcase that gave them a little competition.

"Vegas under the previous ownership, not the current ownership, wanted to bury High Point quite frankly and take over that role,” Conley said.

Market officials said it didn’t do well and ownership is back in the hands of High Point.

International Market Center wants to return the crown to the Triad.

So far, they own 60 percent of the leasing space downtown.

"About $55 million in investments whether new or renovations for the market," Conley said.

Most of the buildings still under construction will be ready for the spring showcase.

"We have another economic impact story on the way. We'll have the results first of the year. I've seen some of the preliminary numbers and they look great,” said Conley.

Rain or shine, the furniture fall market is back and working to be even bigger and better than its ever been.