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    A two-day party of style and sound kicks off this weekend, attracting 40 musical acts and more fashion collections than you can shake a stiletto at. We chat with the festival’s co-founder about what’s new this year and why you need to be there.

    The Fashion Meets Music Festival 2015 will take place September 5 and 6 in Columbus.
    The Fashion Meets Music Festival 2015 will take place September 5 and 6 in Columbus.

    Music and fashion have long gone hand-in-hand. That’s why a team of insiders from both industries got together and created Fashion Meets Music Festival (FMMF) to celebrate both worlds at once.

    Bret Adams and Melissa Dickson designed and launched FMMF with last year’s inaugural event, bringing in a far-spread lineup of fashion and music acts. FMMF is returning again this year on Labor Day weekend, September 5 and 6, in Columbus’ Arena District.

    According to Dickson, who also serves as the event’s communications director, this year’s event will feature three main stages, one dedicated fashion tent and one dedicated music tent featuring more than 45 national and local artists as well as 25 national and local designers all in a festival setting.

    At this year’s event, you’ll see what Dickson calls a fusion of fashion runway shows with three stages of live music featuring national and local musical acts such as Ludacris, Young The Giant, Andy Grammer, Rachel Platten, and AWOLNATION, as well as local favorites O.A.R. who headlined FMMF last year.

    Dickson says FMMF is about more than the national attention the event garners for the area. “It’s truly about creating a destination over Labor Day weekend,” she says. “The brand of FMMF is about highlighting both fashion and music on the local and national levels and creating a monumental event in the fashion and music sectors of Columbus.”

    Melissa Dickson, Co-Founder of the Fashion Meets Music Festival
    Melissa Dickson, Co-Founder of the Fashion Meets Music Festival

    New for the 2015 Fashion Meets Music Festival is the dedicated fashion tent where fashion and music will meet, according to Dickson. “Local food trucks, unique shopping with cool fashion vendors ranging from T-shirts to ModCloth and social lounges are also new for this year’s event,” she adds.

    Gates will open at noon both days and close at midnight each night. General admission for a single day is $59.99 and general admission for both days is $99.99. You can purchase a VIP Single Day ticket for $109 or a VIP 2-Day ticket for $189.99. Children ages 10 and under will be admitted for free with a ticketed adult. Click here to purchase your tickets.

    083115FEATURE3Dickson says the key sponsors for this year’s event include Stella Artois, iHeart Radio, Jägermeister, 7up, Uber as well as a number of others found on the festival’s website. Aside from all the fashion and music, you can enjoy the plethora of food trucks, local restaurants and other unique bites that will be at the festival. The Fashion Meets Music Festival is partnering up with the Central Ohio Food Truck Association to bring the tastiest vendors that are sure to appeal to every taste bud.

    At the end of each night will be the FMMF After Party Scene at Park Street Complex. Live music will be taking the stage and helping you jam out from 10:00 p.m. until 2:00 a.m.

    To give back to the community, FMMF will help several organizations showcase their causes. From Headcount to Carry Me Forward to 1Face, these important organizations will be in attendance to let you know what they’re doing to improve the world around them.

    To learn more or purchase tickets, click here.

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    Keep reading to learn more about how a local nonprofit is working to give at-risk youth a new outlook on life by immersing them in the arts and entertainment industry.

    Arms Around Media works to immerse Cincinnati's youth in entertainment and art.

    Cincy Chic: What is Arms Around Media?
    Ronald Williams, Founder/Executive Director of Arms Around Media: Arms Around Media works with youth in media, film, music, theater, poetry, dance and picture art.

    Cincy Chic: What’s the inspiration behind it?
    Williams: This is a call for action to our community leaders, parents, schools and youth, Arms Around Media was established to bridge the gap and give youth life skills in areas they strive to be in. We have staff, board members and partners with years of experience in various arts and some back by degrees and businesses to back it up.

    Cincy Chic: Tell us more about your Youth in Media program!
    Williams: The “Youth In Media” program allows youth to participate in the art areas of theater, film, audio, creative writing, poetics, dance and painting. They learn hands on in a stage and studio setting. We provide a learning platform to lift their higher endeavors. Located among over 120 artist studios where creative synergy flourishes.

    Cincy Chic: Where is Arms Around Media located?
    Williams: Arms Around Media is at 2511 Essex Place, Suite 259 in Cincinnati.

    Cincy Chic: Where can readers go to learn more?
    Williams: Visit to learn more. Fill out a contact form or call 888-631-4611 ext. 1.

    You can also donate to the Arms Around Media mission on the organization’s website.

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    A new production company launched to bring the best beats to your next bash. Read on for all the fine-tuned details.


    Whether you’re planning a business party, a fundraiser, back yard bash, or the concert of the year, you’ll want fun music. Ohio Valley Productions, founded in early 2015 by Anne Zimmerman, Dan Varner, Greg Harshfield, and Eric Miller, is your direct connection to national, regional and local acts to fit your vision for your event.

    According to founding partner Greg Harshfield, Ohio Valley Productions was born from a dream of a music festival event on the east side of Cincinnati. Varner, frontman of the Dan Varner Band, Harshfield, an entrepreneur, and well-connected Miller, director of the Anderson Area Chamber of Commerce, realized that a business needed to be created to support such events.

    The three realized that they had “similar dreams for a business that would bring together the many aspects of the entertainment industry and event production,” Harshfield says. Varner, Harshfield, and Miller brought in Anne Zimmerman, President of Zimmerman & Co. CPAs Inc., as the business consultant, and the four began brainstorming. “With Dan Varner’s incredible experience and the diverse skills of the other partners,” Harshfield says, “it became obvious that we had something magical that had real potential.”

    Though based in Ohio, Ohio Valley Productions offers live entertainment services nationwide. No event is too large or small, Harshfield says, as Ohio Valley Productions brings live entertainment to every kind of event, including major concert events, corporate parties, festivals, fundraisers, and other special occasions. It produces its own event series as well as full event planning, management, talent, and venue resources for other events.

    What sets Ohio Valley Productions apart, according to Harshfield, is dedication: “Entertainment is our passion, our purpose and our personal goal for every event that we are involved in. You won’t find the type of service that we provide anywhere else, or with more dedicated people. Ohio Valley Productions has a unique blend of professionals who are experts in their field, and we treat every event as if it was our only event.”

    As a company only a few months old, the team behind Ohio Valley Productions has big plans. “As we work toward building the business and our debut events, we will begin to grow our reach into local venues, regional venues and beyond,” Harshfield says. “Connections to resources that can provide local, regional and national talent ensure that growth potential. Building the data behind the business is also key to the overall success, and we have that covered as well.”

    Be sure to look out for their debut event, “Rockin’ the Rail,” on August 14 and 15 at Belterra Park. August 14 will feature acts such as multi-platinum headliner Lorrie Morgan. August 15 will feature the Dan Varner Band and Eric Paslay. Contact Ohio Valley Productions at or visit to learn more.

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    A local music lover designs one-of-a-kind custom electric guitar bodies. See why it’s music to the ears of musicians across the nation who want to stand out on stage.


    Cincy Chic: What is Seta Guitars?
    Mike Seta, Owner of Seta Guitars: Seta Guitars creates unique, one-of-a-kind custom electric guitar bodies for musicians who want to stand out with their instrument, or who are looking for something completely different to add to their collection.

    Mike Seta, Owner of Seta Guitars
    Mike Seta, Owner of Seta Guitars

    Cincy Chic: What’s the inspiration behind your business?
    Seta: Most musicians shopping for a guitar will go to a music store and buy a stock model that’s complete and ready to play. Some will swap out components here and there, but they won’t drastically alter the instrument. My customers are the guys who want total control of every part of their guitar, and they build it piece by piece. I focus on the body of the electric guitar—the main wooden “plank” onto which all of the other parts are attached. My buyers like to assemble the final instrument themselves, adding whatever neck, electronics and hardware they want.

    Cincy Chic: How long have you been carving guitars?
    Seta: I started doing this in the 90s for fun, mostly for myself. When I got tired with a guitar, I’d trade it or sell it so I could build myself a new one. With the advent of the Internet and eBay, I began selling more and more. Seta Guitars is still just a side business for me (I’m in marketing), but I’m very passionate about anything to do with guitars. I’m completely self-taught, and I’ve screwed up more guitars than I care to mention! But it’s been a fun learning experience, and the money I make lets me buy more guitars. I have many repeat customers and lots of followers on eBay, which is very satisfying. Many of them think I’m some big company. The truth is, I’m just one guy, working in a small corner of my basement, doing something I love.

    Cincy Chic: What types of guitars do you create?
    Seta: I have two basic broad categories: carved guitars and faux-finished bodies. The carved guitars are much more intricate and time-consuming. Using a combination of power tools, chisels and hours and hours of hand sanding, my carved designs are generally organic and follow the original lines of the classic body styles. Some of these bodies take up to 40 hours to carve. I consider these true art pieces, and no two are alike.

    Cincy Chic: What makes Seta Guitars unique?
    Seta: I focus primarily on the classic Fender style guitars—the Telecaster and the Stratocaster. These iconic instruments were designed by Leo Fender in the 50s, and have remained the best selling models to this day. I think the shape, tones and feel of those guitars is nearly perfect. And since I can’t improve upon the design, I try to push the aesthetics of the guitar into new territory.

    Most electric guitars come with pretty basic finishes: solid colors, transparent stains, natural oils, etc. They’re often quite beautiful, but not memorable. I create guitar bodies that stand out. Working within the Fender platform, I carve and paint bodies that are all completely different, yet all have my own personal design signature.

    While the carved bodies accentuate the natural beauty of the wood, my faux finishes strive to replicate the look of a material other than wood. I make them look like rusted riveted steel, copper or even concrete and stone. Even upon very close inspection, these bodies look just like the material I’m trying to replicate.

    I do this because most guitarists are very picky about the tonewoods of their instrument. Alder, ash, mahogany, etc., all give an electric guitar a very different sound. A guitar that was really made from metal or stone would sound completely different. So I build guitars that sound the way my customers want, but look completely different from anything else out there.

    Cincy Chic: Where can readers go to learn more?
    Seta: People can learn more at or on Facebook