Local kids to sell their crafts, other handmade goods at upcoming Lawrence Youth Makers Market

photo by: Rochelle Valverde/Journal-World

The Carnegie Building, 200 W. Ninth St., is pictured on Dec. 2, 2022.

What started as a small group of kids selling their crafts to family and friends will soon see a major upgrade. The first Lawrence Youth Makers Market will be held later this month and plans to offer 32 kid-run craft booths to the public.

Alia León, who is helping organize the event with her mom, was in first grade when she first started making jewelry to sell to family and friends as part of a small craft fair for her homeschool group. Alia, who is now 13 and in seventh grade, said that as more kids joined and enjoyed the event, she wanted to give even more kids the chance to participate.

“It’s fun to have all these people there, and the bigger that the event got, the more exciting it was,” Alia said. “And all of the kids who were selling there, they would ask me, ‘When are we having another event?’ Everybody who had sold there seemed to have loved doing it, so I wanted to create a bigger opportunity for anyone.”

photo by: contributed

Alia León is pictured behind her jewelry booth as part of a craft fair last year.

So Alia went to her mom, Lydia León, and asked her about making the event something that all kids in Lawrence could participate in. After searching for different models, they settled on a program through the Acton Children’s Business Fair. León said the program’s platform helps kids think through the process by asking questions about their product, how they will price it and how they will get started.

“For kids, it’s an opportunity for them to be an entrepreneur for a day,” León said. “It is an opportunity for them to create things that they love, to do something that they love, and see that other people have value in it.”

Alia said about 25 kids have signed up to participate so far. She said some of the crafts or products kids plan to sell include tie-dyed T-shirts, wooden toys, jewelry, hand-drawn comics, dog treats, origami creations and baked goods. Other handmade products include ornaments and beauty and bath supplies, such as soaps and bath bombs.

León said they would continue accepting participants, who must be between the ages of 5 and 17, until Dec. 7. An application and more information about the market can be found on the market’s website, childrensbusinessfair.org/lawrence-kansas. Questions can be sent to lawrenceyouthmakersmarket@gmail.com.

The Lawrence Youth Makers Market will be open to the public and will take place Sunday, Dec. 11, from 1 to 4 p.m. at the Carnegie Building, 200 W. Ninth St.


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