Local makers make the world a prettier place and The Arts Alliance is helping them make an even bigger impact through The Deerfield Handmade Markets.
According to Meredith Raffel, Founder and Executive Director at The Arts Alliance, The Deerfield Handmade Markets are designed to showcase local and regional fine arts, creatives, and makers by celebrating those who are creating unique items, and those who work in a more traditional medium, too.
“The idea is to create a more organic and earthy event that welcomes all kinds of creativity,” she explains. “We will welcome artists in the categories of painting, drawing, sculpture, and those who are working to create soaps, floras, repurposing items, reuse materials, furniture makers, candles, cottage food, pop-up shop vendors, and more.”
Raffel says the inspiration behind The Arts Alliance is change.
“The Arts Alliance has always welcomed new ideas and tries to be a fluid organization,” she explains. “Change can be intimidating, but we are game to mix things up.”
The festival events offered through The Arts Alliance have always been traditional – but there was a desire to switch it up a bit.
“It just felt like it was time to welcome a broader set of creatives into the fold,” says Raffel. “Art and the creation of the arts shouldn’t be a stuffy experience and we aren’t a stuffy organization. We are open to new ideas and want to try new things. We have failed plenty of times, but we’ve succeeded even more. We are excited to introduce to the community new artists, new event elements, and enjoyment.”
The welcomed change from The Arts Alliance resulted in The Deerfield Handmade Markets, which was launched in partnership with Deerfield Township.
“We are bringing an urban idea to this rural community,” says Raffel. “We have seen these events downtown and in the breweries. We want to bring ‘cool’ to the ‘burbs.”
Raffel says the Deerfield Handmade Markets are unlike anything else out there in Warren County. “The community will enjoy a lot of games, art making opportunities for their families, and social media opportunities, too.”
The Deerfield Handmade Markets will give those doing good work in the community the chance to have a space at these events.
“Through our Take Part Initiative, we welcome nonprofits to engage with the community and let people know what good work they are doing.”
Those interested in the Take Part Initiative can tell The Arts Alliance about the good work they are doing in the community and they will be given a space. Raffel says approximately 10 spaces will be given to local non-profits.
This year, markets will be held June 8 at Cottell Park from 11am to 5 pm, September 15 at Cottell Park from 11am to 5pm, and December 8 at Sonder Brewing from 11am to 5pm.
There will be around 100 vendors at each of the three events, according to Raffel. The cost for vendors is $50 per event. Artists can apply for the juried events and find more information here.
Raffel says the team comprised of The Arts Alliance and Deerfield Township is excited to bring the Deerfield Handmade Markets to the area this year, following 14 years of presenting festivals to the community.