Spend your money here


Baby Faire offers everything for the well-equipped baby


No question, babies are expensive. Consider the cost of diapers. A pack of 56 newborn disposables is about $11 and with eight to 10 diaper changes a day, that lasts barely a week. As the baby grows, so grows the diaper cost. Pretty soon you've spent $600 for a year of diapers, not including the wipes, powders, ointments, a diaper disposal system-and refills-and other accessories. (Some parents swear by wipe warmers.)

All told, it's easy to spend up to $10,000 in a baby's first year, according to the U.S. Department of Agriculture's estimate.

For many parents, it's daunting. Too many products and too much choice. An easy one-stop shopping venue for parents or parents-to-be is the American Baby Faire on Nov. 1-2 at the Donald E. Stephens Convention Center, 5555 N. River Rd., Rosemont.

It's all about commercialism but if you are spending the money anyway, this is the place to compare prices and products.

"I heard it was a good place to check out the new products," says Tami McMillan of Wonder Lake. She has missed only one Baby Faire since she was pregnant with her first child, Natalie, now 4. She now has Gabby, 2, and Vaughn, 5 months. "And by getting all the different samples, I can decide what brands to use."

The event, presented by the American Baby Group and Babies "R" Us, will showcase about 150 exhibitors, representing national and local companies. Parents buy on the spot or pick up free samples and discount coupons.

About 20,000 visitors are expected. Babies and older children are welcome. You can also leave the kids at home and go to the seminars on nutrition and safety.

American Baby Faire runs from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Admission for adults is $8; grandparents and children 12 and under are free. For information, visit www.babyfaire.com.

Laura Bayard


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