on Opening Grand(ly)

This past weekend was  . . . something akin to getting married, or having your first child. You’ve planned and planned, organized and written out every last detail. The tables are set, the bags are packed, and you’re ready to enjoy the moment, like everyone tells you to. Sit back, relax, and take it all in. And then, like that – it’s over. And it’s amazing. And there it is.

This past weekend was . . . amazing. We opened our doors promptly at 10 on Saturday morning to a few rain-soaked fans there to be the first to pick out their handmade goodies from the over 3,000 we have on the floor. Yes, that’s right, over 3,000 hand-crafted pieces of art and craft grace our shelves, our tables, our jewelry cases and slat walls, from over 80 different artists, from all over the Midwest and some even as far as Austin, TX.

This past weekend was . . . wet. Our hearts went out to our friends selling their artwork out on 4th St in the famous Fourth Street Festival of the Arts and Crafts. We remember (sometimes fondly) what it’s like to set up our tents in the rain, in the heat, in the humidity and sell our work to passersby in weather we can’t control. But, the weather cleared, and with that came more foot traffic for both them and us. A win-win situation. And, in the end, it broke our late August heat-wave and cooled things down just a tiny bit for a respite we all needed.

This past weekend was . . . meant to be. We feel so very welcomed into our new permanent home. It seems each hour, each day we met a new neighbor from the building, or an old neighbor that used to reside on our building. Did you know our building has much history!? We can’t wait to continue learning about the rich history and culture we’re becoming a part of. But it’s not just the building that welcomed us, or the people inside – it was our entire community, and then some. It was so encouraging to have you walk in the door to tell us, ‘we’re so glad you’re back, and for good,’ or ‘we couldn’t wait until your next event’ or ‘this is the coolest shop’ or ‘this is just what Bloomington needed.’ These are all such supportive words of encouragement for us, and we want you to know, we do not take them for granted. We will work hard for you. We will work long days and nights, tenaciously bringing you new artists, new wares – showcasing handmade and makers to make you proud – to make us proud. We promise you that.

With that – we thank you. From the bottoms of our hearts. For coming out in the rain to visit. For sticking around and sharing your stories with us. For being you.

We also want to thank . . .

. . . our local singer songwriter Gloria Bangiola who came out mid-afternoon to grace us with her beautiful voice and sultry guitar.

. . . our kindred spirits and friends with Bea’s Soda Bar for coming out and slinging sodas and puppy bark all morning long.

. . . our super fun friends from up North with Bearmojo for christening our trunk show table and entertaining us with monsters all afternoon.

. . . our friends who came out to visit, to support, and SMILE big from behind the crowd to show us just how proud they are and how proud we are to be their friends. You know who you are.

.  .  . our artists and makers, for believing in us since the beginning and standing by us through it all. Your support is immeasurable and we Love you.

 

Thank you. Thank you. Thank you.

We simply can’t wait to continue doing this.

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