HYPERLOCAL NEWS HUB BY THE UNIVERSITY OF MEMPHIS DEPARTMENT OF JOURNALISM
Goods and Activism: A little of everything at the CY Festival
By Ed Arnold/MicroMemphis contributor plus stories from contributors Shaunitra Ingram and Sheila Guerrero
Sept. 19, 2011
This year’s Cooper Young festival looks to be the biggest ever and that’s cause for optimism for the many artists, community organizations and craftspeople who make up the over 400 vendors at the festival.
Kim Gurley has been setting up her booth at the CY fest since 2006. “I just love it. It’s a great way to enjoy the festival,” said Gurley. “It always pays for itself and these are my people.”
Gurley’s spends her days as associate art director at the downtown advertising agency Red Deluxe but once a year breaks out her personally designed baby onsies and tote bags. She sells them all year round on her website gurleygurl.com but only sells them in person at CY fest.
This is local artist Daniel Tacker’s third year at the Cooper Young Festival, though it hasn’t been consecutive. “We missed it last year for our wedding,” said Tacker.
His distinctive style is a blend of graphic design, collage and graffiti-inspired techniques. Tacker hopes that the combination of the increased size of the festival along with his current Dixon gallery show title “The City Loves You” will lead to his biggest year yet.
Bright and smartly designed ‘Thank You’ cards and writing pads sit edge to edge with nature shot prints and posters at Lindsey Turner’s “Theogeo Design and Photography” booth near Cafe Ole.
It's Turner’s first year as a vendor at the festival and she’s cautiously optimistic.
“We don’t know what to expect, “said Turner. “Here’s hoping.”
Shopping for a Good Cause
Aside from arts, crafts and goodies available at the festival, community organizations also see the CY fest as an opportunity for outreach.
Planned Parenthood Memphis Greater Region has a booth at the festival distributing condoms and other health information. They also partner with the Memphis Gay and Lesbian Community Center (MGLCC) to offer free HIV tests to anyone at the festival.
“We’ve been offering HIV testing at the Cooper Young Festival since 2007,” said Director of Comunity Affairs Joan Carr,“ It is a great way to promote our regular weekly after-hours testing that we offer there. Planned Parenthood personnel do the testing and MGLCC provides the location. MGLCC welcomes anyone to be tested either during the Cooper Young Festival or any Wednesday night.”
From Journalism to Jewelry