HENRY CO., Va. -


More than 15-hundred jobs will be available Wednesday at a job fair in an area with the worst unemployment in the state.

The Martinsville-Henry County Chamber of Commerce is hosting the fair from 9:00 a.m. until 12:00 p.m. at the National Guard Armory on Commonwealth Boulevard.

Around 40 companies are looking to hire hundreds of people for a wide range of jobs.

The chamber of commerce recommends bringing your resume to Wednesday's job fair and being prepared for an on-site interview.


Inside the warehouse and on the floor at Drake Extrusions, Incorporated in Martinsville it's hot and it's loud.

All those cranks and clicks means these workers and the Chief Executive Officer John Parkinson still have a job.

"Our principal product goes into SUV's, it goes into the fabric that goes on seat backs and also the packing shelves," Parkinson said.

Parkinson doesn't mind the temperature and noise, as long as sells are high and income is steady.

Now demand is increasing and the plant is looking to hire.

"We're up to close to 200 people and we're ready to invest more money to add addition lines in the new year and we're looking to employ about another 15 or 16 people," Parkinson said.

Drake's help wanted signs aren't the only ones going up, about 40 other businesses are looking for workers too.

More than 1,500 jobs are available right now in Martinsville, Henry and Franklin Counties, Roanoke and parts of North Carolina.

All those jobs are available during a job fair Wednesday morning from nine until noon at the armory on Commonwealth Boulevard. Bring a resume and be prepared for an on-site interview.

"As long as I've been with the chamber for seven year, the biggest one that I've seen us participate with," said Amanda Witt, president of the Martinsville Henry County Chamber of Commerce.

Why so many job openings at one time? Witt says this year there are more businesses expanding. Also because businesses are forecasting brighter end of year production.

"I don't know exactly, to tell you, why so many openings, but it's a great thing," Witt said. I definitely think expansion plays a role in some of these, and of course we've got some folks that have heavy production times in the fall and in the winter."

Martinsville and Henry County have the highest unemployment rate in Virginia.
Leaders are hoping this job fair could keep more cranks turning longer.