A Popcorn Festival

I was unsure of what this festival would be like when the vendor coordinator contacted me about joining the festivities.  Until that point, I had no idea where Valparaiso, Indiana was located, or why I would want to go there.  But I thought I would give it a shot, because some of these tiny shows turn out to be gems.

We got up at a ridiculous hour in the morning to be in Valparaiso (1.5 hours away) by 6:00 to set up.  We had to be up and operational by 7.  While we were setting up and trying not to let our tent blow away, I was quietly cursing myself for thinking it would be a good idea.  an under-caffeinated pixie is a cranky pixie indeed.  Once we were up, I walked away in search of hot coffee and orange juice, and the day began.

Last week, Odin and I put our heads together (sometimes we can do that and it doesn’t hurt) and came up with a new way of displaying my wings.  He had been making screens (read: room dividers) for the old roommie before we found out she was more than a little unstable and asked her to leave, so we talked about how to utilize these screens.  This is what we came up with:

There are two of them and they fold in half.  I have them tied to the tent in two places, and they hold a ton of wings.  By the end of the day, my very creative sister (you can see her behind the stand) had found ways to display a few more pairs.  The wings just slip into the slats – no tying necessary.  It made helping customers so easy.
The festival took a little while to get started, but then it was busy.  There were about 20,000 people there, and it took up 4×4 city blocks.  There was an ampitheatre nearby our location, and I could hear music throughout the day.  At the very end, I had asked someone what cover band this was that had been playing Rusted Root for the past two hours, and the person laughed at me and said “It actually is Rusted Root.”  I made my sister take Ellette to the last song because we have been listening to them in the car lately – Ellette calls them “that drumming band” and really enjoys their music.

Ellette had fun dressing up.  The condition was she had to stand outside of the shop and get people to come in.

There was face painting, of course, but nothing new for me.  I tried to get more unique things, but butterflies and tigers are ever popular.

I did one zombie and a variation on a dragon (he wanted it to match his dad’s tattoo).

And then my sister stepped in and did some painting when I was getting sore.  She’s pretty good, and had herself a line built up by the time I finished lunch.

There was a balloon artist who made an awesome unicorn.  I couldn’t resist.

And at the very end we met a kid on a unicycle and made him juggle – ’cause we’re dorks like that.  Unicycles are cool.

In all, it was a good day.  I think I may do it again next year, especially since now I have an idea of what is popular there.  Each location is different, and I never know if I have a market until halfway through the day.  It makes taking on new shows a risky business, but sometimes it is all worth it.

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