May 172017
 

The Fleas are coming. The Fleas are coming. And that is a good thing for Salem as these are seven flea market dates that will take place in Derby Square & Artists’ Row this May-October!

You are invited to come on down to The Salem Flea and cruise the monthly markets which will feature vendors of vintage & up-cycled furniture & fashion. Walk among, touch, and ask questions about collectibles, antiques, architectural salvage; as well as jewelry, art, & handmade goods by local artisans.

That is what makes The Salem Flea so exciting and relevant. Local artisans will have the opportunity to “show their stuff” to you “their” local market of shoppers.

Consider it a win/win opportunity!

The current The Salem Flea vendor list (subject to change)

  • 8 By Design
  • 9 Wall Woodworking
  • Cruz Art Designs
  • The Chailfour Collection
  • The Cyprus Collection
  • Chick Art Works
  • Decades of Decor
  • Emma’s Wicked Attic
  • The Felt Fanatic
  • The House of Findings
  • Houseworking
  • The House of Champigny
  • Home Maker Collectibles
  • INplace
  • Little Shop of Karma
  • My Sweet Soap
  • Mayflower Vintage and Antiques
  • Moody Interiors
  • Nomad & Local
  • Notso Kitty
  • Prospect Hill Handmade
  • Restore Works
  • RM&Company
  • Salem Soapworks
  • We Have Issues

The Salem Flea is scheduled to take place, rain or shine, on May 20, June 17, July 15, Aug 19, Sept 16 in Derby Square with Halloween Markets in The Artists Row walkway October 14 and 28.

The Salem Flea is owned by RM & Company of Salem and produced in collaboration with the City of Salem

The market is free to attend and you can find more information at www.thesalemflea.com

May 112017
 

Street Sense is a semiregular column with Salem Main Streets’ executive director Kylie Sullivan, highlighting common sense lessons learned while supporting the delightfully uncommon community of downtown Salem, MA.

Photo Credit – Creative Salem

Last week, I had the honor of participating in Innonorth’s panel on marketing locally. As I began to consider the topic – specifically marketing LOCALLY – I realized I actually had a lot to say, because Main Streets and local marketing are both all about people and connections. So here are a few of my personal takes on what it means to market locally in a community like Salem.

* YOU ARE YOUR BRAND
Downtown Salem is made up of small businesses – many of them microbusinesses (<5 full-time equivalent staff). For a lot of us, this is one of the things we really love about Salem – we love shopping local, we love knowing the person behind the product, and we love that they know us. There’s nothing more special than going into a business and being welcomed by name by the owner. This means that your business is really about you, no matter how good your product is. The great thing about your personal brand is that it’s the cheapest and most effective form of marketing you can invest in! It also makes it easy to represent your business when you’re simply doing the things you already enjoy – joining a running club, attending community events, supporting another business’ opening. The downside is that there’s a lot more on the line. Brands are about trust. It can take years to build a strong brand, and seconds to ruin one – and when you add your personal brand to your business brand, the number of ways you can accidentally mess up are immediately amplified. So be aware of this in your daily life, at the grocery store, at the bar, on social media (that’s right, even your personal social media can impact your business – perhaps unfair, but true). It can be exhausting, but it’s incredibly important to keep this in mind.

*Be present.
The best way to make use of your personal brand is to be present in the daily life of the community. This could mean physically, online, or financially, but if you’re keeping to yourself in an engaged community like Salem, odds are that the locals are going to overlook you. Sponsor local festivals, come to networking events, maintain a social media presence, participate in downtown promotional efforts. Like any marketing plan, it takes a while to figure out what works best for you – both what’s easiest for you personally and what gets you the most traction – but you won’t know until you try.

*Be a positive advocate for the community.
The emphasis is on positive advocacy. Small-scale economic and community development only really work if most of us are pulling in the same direction, but community advocacy is also an important marketing tool.  Customers respond to local businesses that look beyond their own walls to support local causes, advocate for positive change within their industry, or collaborate with other local businesses.  Additional insider tip: being an active and positive advocate also makes it more likely that local entities (like Salem Main Streets, let’s say) will think of you first when they’re looking for a downtown business to promote or highlight.

*Don’t forget to talk about what you do!
A lot of local business owners work so hard to make sure that the community knows them as people that they forget to say what their business actually does – and are then hurt or surprised when a community member doesn’t choose their business the next time they need something. Now, I’m not saying that you should be spouting off your elevator speech at every social occasion, or shoving business cards at people who haven’t asked for one – this can actually be extremely off-putting. But keeping your eyes and ears open for opportunities, and not being afraid to talk about what you do and what you’re proud of can go a long way when working in a small community.

*Be genuine and believe in your product.
Transparency is incredibly important to any consumer, but especially to those who choose to shop locally. And maybe it’s a result of living in a historic community with a strong tourist economy, but I feel that Salemites are particularly sensitive to insincerity. The good news is that this makes it even easier to be true to your personal brand – the less distance that exists between your professional self and your personal self, the less difficult it is to make sure that your brand remains consistent over time.

May 092017
 

Express yourself artists of the North Shore! There is an open invitation from the 2017 Salem Arts Festival to local visual artists: “submit your work for the juried gallery at Old Town Hall” during the 9th annual festival that takes place this year, June 2-4.

Artists may submit up to 3 pieces; at least two of which must be for sale. Dates/times for drop off at Old Town Hall (32 Derby Sq.) will be May 26 from 5-8pm and May 27 from 9am-noon. Applicants will be informed of jury decisions by Sunday morning, and works not accepted must be picked up by Sunday evening or Monday afternoon.

Hung artwork may not exceed 36″ in any direction (including frame) and must be wired to hang – no sawtooth hangers. Larger artwork must have an easel or a stand. While installations are welcome, be mindful that Salem’s historic spaces come with some limitations.

You have time, but not a lot as the juried gallery will be selected by an on-site review process to be held the weekend before the festival, May 26-29.

This special exhibit is to be judged and juried for prizes by a panel comprised of individuals from the Salem arts community and beyond.

Over 5,000 people regularly attend the family-friendly Salem Arts Festival, transforming downtown Salem, MA into an opportunity for the arts community to showcase a wide range of talents: painting, photography, sculpture, dance, music, writing, film, new media, performance, theatre, poetry, and more!

The Salem Arts Festival is organized by Salem Main Streets and a collaboration of Salem organizations which provide support for the festival, including the City of Salem, Peabody Essex Museum, Salem Arts Association, and Creative Salem. This program is supported in part by a grant from the Salem Cultural Council, a local agency which is supported by the Massachusetts Cultural Council, a state agency.

For full details of requirements and regulations, please see the admission form at http://salemartsfestival.com/juried-gallery/.

For any other Salem Arts Festival-related information, please see www.salemartsfestival.com or contact Kylie Sullivan at kylie@salemmainstreets.org or (978)744-0004 (x115).

Apr 232017
 

Poetry is a bouquet, and just as a bouquet of flowers may be filled with colors, shapes, and scents, so to is a poem a blend of words, rhythms, and sounds. This will be evident May 5-7th when the 9th annual Massachusetts Poetry Festival welcomes many of America’s most admired poets to a celebration of Massachusetts’ lively contemporary poetry scene in historic downtown Salem, MA

The Mass Poetry Festival offers nearly 100 poetry readings and workshops, a small press and literary fair, panels, poetry slams, and open-air readings. Panel topics range broadly from The State of Poetry, poetry and gender, poetry and aging, book publishing, and children’s poetry.

Of special note, on Friday, May 5, MPF will host a “Student Day of Poetry” in which 300 high school students from across the Commonwealth study with acclaimed poets and instructors to discover their own unique voice.

Throughout the weekend, you are also invited to absorb the thoughts and expressions of acclaimed poets such as: Pulitzer-prize winner and former U.S. Poet Laureate Louise Glück, Guggenheim fellow Eileen Myles, Kazim Ali, Andrea Cohen, Cornelius Eady and Rough Magic, Ross Gay, Rigoberto González, Aimee Nezhukumatathil, Emily Pettit, Tom Sleigh, and Dara Wier.

For a full breakdown of the schedule go to the MPF site.

As example of the diversity:

Friday from 1:15- 2:15pm at Old Town Hall (second floor) 32 Derby Square, a relatively new genre of music known as Post Rock will be combined with poetry and in so doing create “Post Rock Poetry.” Grounded in 1980’s and 90’s indie rock music, it is primarily instrumental, guitar, base, drums, and keyboard, with few lyrics. Typically, post rock pieces are lengthy and may contain, “… repetitive build ups of timbre, dynamics and texture.” (Wikipedia, 9/11/2016.) Because Post Rock seldom has lyrics, it lends itself to the creation of Post Rock Poetry that can explore the quest for a peace, understanding, and rising above hostilities and misfortune. In short, it rings with hope.

Then Friday evening, two of the finest poets writing today— the award-winning Ross Gay and Aimee Nezhukumatathil— will present from 7:30–9 p.m. in the Atrium of the Peabody Essex Museum.

Saturday afternoon will feature a musical performance by Cornelius Eady and his band Rough Magic, blending poetry and music at the Peabody Essex Museum. Headline poets Andrea Cohen, Tom Sleigh, Kazim Ali, and Rigoberto González will read throughout the day at the Peabody Essex Museum, celebrating the diversity and common threads among us all.

Saturday evening will feature award-winning poet and novelist Eileen Myles, 7:30–9 p.m. at The Bridge at 211. After her reading, she will be interviewed by WBUR’s celebrated host Christopher Lydon. Eileen Myles demonstrates the extraordinary possibilities of poetry to reveal the personal and political experiences of American life.

Venues

  • Peabody Essex Museum, 161 Essex Street
  • Hawthorne Hotel, 18 Washington Square
  • Old Town Hall, 32 Derby Square
  • Museum Place Mall, 1 E India Square Mall, New Liberty Charter School, Rooms 1-4 (on second floor)
  • The Bridge at 211 (Universalist Unitarian Church), 211 Bridge St
  • Howling Wolf, 76 Lafayette Street

From the beginning, the goals of Mass Poetry have been to “support poets and poetry in Massachusetts, to build new audiences for poetry, and to make poetry more accessible for those who need it most—often those who have the least access to it.” By bringing it to the streets and venues in Salem Ma, accessible to residents and visitors, the poetic bouquet of words, rhythms, and sounds can be enjoyed by so many more. You are invited to be among them.

Admission is $20, and $7 for students & seniors; an additional $10 service fee is charged for all workshops.

For additional info on The Massachusetts Poetry Festival, contact January Gill O’Neil at january@masspoetry.org.

(Photo courtesy of Creative Salem)

Apr 082017
 

Local food, fashion, drink, dancing, and fun await you April 14th as you are invited to attend the fourth annual Salem Arts Festival Fashion Show Fundraiser in support of one of Salem’s greatest festivals (we refer of course to The 9th annual Salem Arts Festival which will be held June 2nd to 4th, 2017)!

The Fashion Show gets bigger and better every year, and it’s really the perfect way to introduce the dynamic, locally-focused energy behind the Arts Festival,” says Kylie Sullivan, Executive Director of Salem Main Streets (SMS), the community non-profit organization which oversees the Festival. “The need for financial support is critical for the success of the festival, which annually welcomes over 5,000 attendees to downtown Salem over the first weekend in June.  We are committed to keeping the festival free and open to the public, but we’re also committed to paying our artists – that means we need to raise some substantial funds.”

The event will be held upstairs at the beautiful and historic Old Town Hall at 32 Derby Square, this year with a record-breaking number of boutiques.

The Fashion Show annually highlights a growing number of local boutiques – including Avalanche, Beach Bride Baubles, The Boutique, Curtsy, Emporium 32, J. Mode, Lifebridge’s Second Chance Thrift Shop, Modern Millie Vintage & Consignments, Ocean Chic Boutique & Waterbar, the Peabody Essex Museum Shop, re-find and re-find men’s, and RJ Coins and Jewelry, with professional stylist Lisa Ann Schraffa Santin on hand. Make up will be provided by the fabulous artists from Laura Lanes Skin Care, Rouge Cosmetics, Radiance Aveda, Arbonne by Roz, and Victoria Crisp, with hair styling by Bella Hair Studios and My Barber Shop.

Karen Scalia of Salem Food Tours is the mastermind behind all fashion show logistics and staging, and Creative Salem serves as the show’s media partner – locals know that means it’s going to be an amazing night. Attendees can additionally expect some fantastic outside-the-box accoutrements from local creative genius Grace & Diggs, a photo booth with Creative Salem, and mind-blowing lighting by Retonica. Food by Ferreira Foods, drinks by North Shore Bartending, dancing with DJ Seth, and a great raffle will make the evening complete!

Advance tickets are $25 per person with a cash bar, with $40 VIP tickets available for an assigned seat on the catwalk and a free thank you treat. Tickets purchased the day of the event are $30, with $45 for VIP seats – but this event has sold out the past two years, so we don’t recommend waiting!

Purchase tickets over the phone at 978-744-0004 x115, in person at 265 Essex Street (Salem Main Streets), or online at https://salem-main-streets.ticketleap.com/fashion-2017. Proceeds directly benefit the Salem Arts Festival.

About the Salem Arts Festival

This popular free event features over 100 artists and performers, and includes a variety of art, music, dance, and theatre performances. The family-friendly event also includes an artisan street fair, art-making activities for all ages, and a temporary community-created public art installation.  The Festival is run by Salem Main Streets in collaboration with a team of dedicated volunteers, including representatives from Creative Salem, Salem State University, the Peabody Essex Museum, and more. The Salem Arts Festival is supported in part by the City of Salem and a grant from the Salem Cultural Council, a local agency which is supported by the Massachusetts Cultural Council, a state agency.

(Photo credit to Creative Salem)