WATSONVILLE — Like Tom Cruise in the hit 1986 movie “Top Gun,” the Pajaro Valley Chamber of Commerce and Agriculture (PVCCA) hopes to help county businesses reach new heights at its upcoming Business Expo. It also wants to help them find their “wingman”—the Goose to their Maverick.
For the first time since its return about 10 years ago, the PVCCA Business Expo—this year themed after the ‘80s action flick—will also include a job fair. The expo is set for April 25 at the Santa Cruz County Fairgrounds in Watsonville from 4-7 p.m.
Prospective employers include Watsonville Coast Produce, Cal State Monterey Bay, Central Coast Screen Printing and Embroidery, Martinelli’s, iHeatMedia, Curves and Togo’s, which is in the process of opening a new downtown Watsonville location.
“We saw the need for the job fair over the years,” said PVCCA CEO Shaz Roth, who added that their will be a designated area for job seekers to fill out applications.
“Businesses throughout the county do a large amount of hiring during the spring, and we want to help them find great employees while showcasing their business to attendees throughout the area,” Roth said.
The addition of the job fair forced the PVCCA to expand from the Crosetti Hall to the Arts Building to fit new business.
More than 100 business will be on hand, including newcomers Santa Cruz Beach Boardwalk, Santa Cruz Bicycles and Staff of Life, a natural foods grocery store from Santa Cruz opening a Watsonville location at the East Lake Village Shopping Center later this year.
Roth said the event has grown substantially over the last eight years, when only 35 business registered.
“Businesses keep coming back and more are jumping in… they really like how we target the community,” Roth said. “We try to get everyone that attends to hit every booth.”
The annual event features prizes, food and Blackout Bingo, one of the many interactive activities that encourages attendees to visit each booth.