By Ryan Ottney
August 25, 2013
Ryan Scott Ottney
PDT Staff Writer
Shawnee State University and Main Street Portsmouth welcomed new students to the community on Saturday with its second annual Street Fair on the Roy Rogers Esplanade, on Chillicothe Street in Portsmouth. The fair shared the space Saturday with Main Street Portsmouth’s weekly Farmer’s Market.
“The whole purpose of the Street Fair is to welcome Shawnee State University students to the Portsmouth area. It’s to introduce them to the businesses and the opportunities we have going on here in the city. It’s also open to the community to also see what we have to offer. We just want to do something downtown, and it’s nice day today,” said Mistie Cook Spicer, coordinator of community relations at Shawnee State University.
Every Saturday, from 9 a.m. until noon, Main Street Portsmouth fills the Esplanade with local vendors selling their handmade art and cooking. As closing time came on Saturday, many vendors stayed to participate in the Street Fair. Cook Spicer said about 15 vendors participated in the Street Fair last year, but this year that number had doubled to more than 35 vendors — plus those from the Farmer’s Market.
Laurel DeAtley, from Main Street Portsmouth, is at the Esplanade every Saturday morning selling homemade syrup, jelly, baked treats, and handmade crochets at the Farmer’s Market. She said she was pleased to stay later on Saturday to participate in the Street Fair with Shawnee State University.
“We really see a need to build community, and doing things like this where you can get out and talk with people, meet people; you’ve got to turn your TV off and go out where other people are. It gives people a place to go. It also gives people, if they so choose, a place to sell their goods. That’s the whole goal of the market. To provide a place in the community where people can buy and sell local products,” she said.
Other booths were setup at the Street Fair selling candles, art, barbecue, clothes, and even a psychic reading. Shawnee State University was also there showing off creations from its plastics department, and giving away door prizes such as coupons and gift cards.
“We’re registering people for those giveaways, and then we’re also going to have a little contest. We’re going to ask people, the first one that knows the mayor’s name of Portsmouth, to come up to the table. Different things like that, just to make it fun. We’ve got some local groups performing. Cirque d’Art is going to be performing. We’ve got a lot going on and we’re very excited about it,” Cook Spicer said.
While the Street Fair is over this year, many vendors are still available at the Main Street Portsmouth Farmer’s Market on the Esplanade in Portsmouth, every Saturday from 9 a.m. until noon. The Farmer’s Market continues through Oct. 5.
Ryan Scott Ottney may be reached at 740-353-3101, ext. 287, or firstname.lastname@example.org. For breaking news, follow Ryan on Twitter @PDTwriter.