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The Jackalope Arts Festival came to Olde Town Arvada for the first time on Sept. 18 and 19, showcasing handmade goods made by over 60 local artisans from across the state. The festival was free of …
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The Jackalope Arts Festival came to Olde Town Arvada for the first time on Sept. 18 and 19, showcasing handmade goods made by over 60 local artisans from across the state. The festival was free of charge to attendees and ran from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. both days.
Jackalope co-founder Melissa Kohout — herself an Arvada native — said she was inspired to bring the festival to her hometown in part because of the recent beautification efforts enacted in the Olde Town district.
“I love it. I love the murals, I think they’re so artistic and I think it really goes well with Jackalope,” said Kohout. “I love all the restaurants and shops in Olde Town, so it’s fun to just sort of add to it and hopefully all of us work together to bring more people to Arvada.”
Olde Town Business Improvement District Marketing and Events Manager Carya Haas said the festival’s organizers reached out to the BID hoping to hold Jackalope in Olde Town and said the BID worked with the Kohout and fellow Jackalope Co-Founder Sara Deitrich to help get the event off the ground.
“Jackalope actually reached out to us,” said Haas. “One of the organizers is originally from Arvada, and it’s my understanding that the street closures and stuff are what made Arvada really appealing for this festival… We’ve been working with them through the process to give them a leg-up and not have them start from scratch.”
Vendors at the festival included artisans of all types, including jewelers, leatherworkers, painters and botanists.
Alissandra Seelaus, a maker of digitally hand-drawn cards and pints, said that while she showcased her work at Jackalope before, she felt that the Arvada location was ideal for the event.
“This is the perfect spot. I’ve never been here before, I’m ashamed to say, but this space is so open and big,” Seelaus. “You know, it’s clean, and there’s other small restaurants and things around, so it’s like the market can support the city and the city can support the market.”
Arvada-based Leah Sachs, the Founder of Slices of Citrus - a sustainable jewelry company that creates pieces made from real fruits and vegetables treated with resin.
“It’s really cute to be around all the shops, and everyone is just so supportive over here,” said Sachs. “Like, all the shop owners have come over to by booth and bought jewelry, and it’s just really sweet to meet everyone in person.”
Haas said that having the festival in Olde Town aligns with the BID’s vision of making Olde Town an arts destination for the Denver Metro Area.
“It’s been my persona goal, but also the goal of the bid to really make Olde Town an arts destination in the Denver Metro Area, so every year we just add onto that,” said Haas.
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