Youth Enterprise Zone (YEZ)
Friday--One Day Only!Where at Common Ground can you find intricately hand-sewn mouse dolls made from wishbones? Or a magical array of handcrafted fairies, gnomes and elves, fairy-making kits, fairy and elf necklaces, and whimsical gnome homes created from driftwood, acorn caps, lichens and other forest friends? In the Youth Enterprise Zone!
Common Ground is famous for its extraordinary craftspeople and artists, Maine businesses and agricultural expertise--but have you ever wondered what the next generation is up to? Come see what the future might hold at the Youth Enterprise Zone (YEZ) tent near the Rose Gate, across from the Children's Area. Talented entrepreneurs from ages 11 to 17 fill the tent to discuss and sell their creations, test their skills and, they hope, to inspire on Friday, Sept. 23, of the Fair weekend.
Along with the wishbone mice, fairies, elves and gnomes, you'll find hand-dipped candles, handmade knitting needles and leatherwork, hand-painted cotton and silk textiles, hand blown glass beads and sun catchers, hand-knitted and crocheted scarves, hand-sewn embossed velvet bags and more. Participants in YEZ have everything from poems to piņatas, dollhouse furniture to duct tape wallets, tree seedlings and houseplants to kite kits and fishing flies, and an assortment of handmade jewelry, sachets, origami, birch bark containers and original artwork, cards and photography.
Some participants have been offering their work for five or more years, and we've been watching them develop their craft in the YEZ. Others will be trying their ideas for the first time. YEZ buzzes with spirited, young, creative energy, and the kids love to show and talk about their work. As the YEZ kids test their products and marketing skills, you get to preview the next generation of artists and craftspeople. Come join the fun-and see the future.
--Patricia Logan, YEZ -Co-coordinator
The Maine Farmers and Gardeners Association (MOFGA), sponsor of the Common Ground Country Fair, offers a unique opportunity for youth called the Youth Enterprise Zone. Not only does this area of the fair provide talented kids a space to show and sell their wares, it encourages other fair-going kids to do the same.
Many different types of products are acceptable to display and sell in the Youth Enterprise Zone. In previous years, products ranging from home made candles to handmade jewelry to wooden bat houses have been displayed. However, all products should incorporate Maine resources to the extent possible, and must also be within the guidelines of one of the existing CGCF areas.
This is also a great chance for youth who wish to interact with others that share an interest in their particular talent or product. It also offers an opportunity for those participating to learn marketing skills firsthand. There has been much positive feedback from this area, and it is hoped more kids will be able to experience this opportunity. Already there has been a steadily growing interest, and it is hoped it will continue as such. The year 2005 will mark the tenth year of this area.
Download an application for the YEZ area (PDF Format, 55Kb)
LOCATED IN UNITY, MAINE
Maine Organic Farmers and Gardeners Association (MOFGA)