FAYETTE COUNTY, WV (WVNS) – If you were looking to keep ‘on track’ with helping small businesses, Saturday was a real treat with the annual White Oak Rail Trail Expo.

Small businesses were buzzing with excitement Saturday as the 12th annual White Oak Rail Trail Expo brought out thousands in Oak Hill.

You name it, chances are it was there as dozens of vendors set up to showcase skills, and help strengthening area communities through programs and small businesses around southern West Virginia.

“I like to let people know about all of the books that I have and the ghost stories that are in their area and in the region. And my books cover a lot of the different regions, I have three books from West Virginia,” commented Janette Quackenbush, an author spanning 25 years.

“We sell regular honey, we sell the creamed honey, it seems to be a pretty good hit. And then another aspect, she (Chris’s wife) sells soaps, tarts and candles and we’re trying something new for this year which is ramp salt – that seems to be doing pretty good. Lip balms, lotions, things like that,” remarked Chris Perry, owner of Perry’s Peak Honey and Products.

“Well, we are out here today, we are out here for a program that we do for the kids in the community. It’s called ‘Love Our Little Ones Helping the Children’. We give out backpacks and school supplies to the kids that need extra in the classroom because there are some kids that don’t have in the classroom so we back them up by giving them extra, so we come out at every event – fundraisers and festivals every year and we make this possible for the kids in the classroom,” said Patricia Nicholes.

“We create 100 percent handmade rustic wood signs and we are known as the electrified specialist simply because we use over 1,000 volts of electricity on our signs. They are all hand routed, all hand-painted. We do everything you see from start to finish,” stated Amy Shumate with L.A. Rustic Designs.

Though every thread of fabric in our communities are a little different, they all have very similar goals:

“Why should you have festivals? Because you get everybody out at the small businesses and everybody learns about the different small businesses that are in the different communities and people also get to go out and see other people and their family and their friends,” exclaimed Quackenbush.

“It keeps us rooted in our communities and really gives people something to see, something to do. It helps people like myself with small businesses that don’t have a brick-and-mortar get out and see what we have and just what all West Virginia has to offer for our locals as well as other people,” remarked Shumate.