The Strawberry Swing Craft Fair is back with its Fall Swing this weekend in the West Bottoms. The fair will host 86 local vendors, selling a wide range of handmade goods and crafts.
The fair and festival will be held underneath the I-670 bridge at 1447 Liberty St. from 10 a.m. until 5 p.m. Some of the shops that will be in attendance include Lela Blue Knits, pottery from Pantless Potter and candles, soaps and home goods from Urban Nomad.
“We just really love seeing entrepreneurs thrive, and it’s so important to shop local,” said lead organizer and Shop Local KC owner Katie Mabry van Dieren. “The community members who come literally have an active role in affecting their local economy, because [they’re] supporting these small businesses, and that money is going straight back into the community.”
Strawberry Swing Craft Fair was founded by Heather Baker in 2011. In 2013, Mabry van Dieren took over the event series and grew it into the large bazaar that it is today.
“We’re the Midwest’s biggest indie craft fair,” she said, adding that the fair travels to different parts of town throughout the year. “I just want to make sure that people can come out and support the makers and the artists.”
For local baker and entrepreneur Elee Hampton, the Strawberry Swing Craft Fair is one of her best markets. Hampton opened up Quarantine Cookies in March 2020 with her husband Abel. Hampton said markets like Strawberry Swing have allowed her cookie business to grow.
“It’s a really large swing,” Hampton said. “And it’s really important to come out and support locals because that money is going directly back into your community and paying people in your community.”
Quarantine Cookies will be unveiling its fall cookie flavors at the Strawberry Swing Craft Fair on Saturday. The new slate of cookies will include a pumpkin spice cookie and an oreo, peanut butter and M&M cookie.
More than a market
Aside from cookies and crafts, there will be lots of live selections for guests to check out.
This year’s fair will have live music, live muralists and a special kids creation station.
The music selections will include a big brass performance from Grand Marquis from 10:30 a.m. until 1 p.m. Local vocalist Jessica Paige will take the stage from 1:30 p.m. until 3 p.m., and from 3:30 p.m. to 5 p.m. students from Art as Mentorship will have a showcase.
Four murals will go up during the event on Saturday as a part of the series, and each will tell a story about the West Bottoms. Muralists include Felicia Koloc, Doodle Dood, ITRA Icons and JT Daniels. Four murals were also created during the Strawberry Swing Craft Fair in May 2022.
This weekend’s Strawberry Swing Fall Festival is just the beginning for the craft fair event series’ fall and winter line up. This fall, the swing will be open every weekend in October at various locations. There will also be a Strawberry Swing Craft Fair on Black Friday to kickoff the Holiday Swing, which will be held at City Market.
To learn more about upcoming events, visit thestrawberryswing.com.