This past Saturday Julie Leatherbarrow (lead image), organizer of the Saturday Artisan Market (SAM), pulled off an incredibly well run and fun-filled kick-off event. Unfortunately the original scheduled kick-off was rained out a couple weeks back, so many of us were crossing our fingers that the weather would hold out... and it did. While there were plenty of people who headed down to specifically check out the market, the really important aspect of the event was the unexpected, built-in attendance. There were so many people who ended up visiting Canalside, and had no idea that there was an artisan market scheduled. I talked to a couple of visitors who were thrilled, and mentioned that the scene was that of a bustling waterfront that they had visited in other cities. One visiting expat was floored when he saw all of the activity.
Of course the main feature of the market was the artisans, but there was also a DJ set up playing electronic music - the summer sounds carried out over the Central Wharf, which added nicely to the vibe. At one point a couple of wedding parties arrived and ended up dancing to the music in full view of the packed patio at The Liberty Hound. It was quite a scene. Artisan Mikel Doktor (Art Buff
) told me that he was not expecting the impressive turnout, stating that he felt that the atmosphere of the market would certainly continue to draw more and more people as the summer progressed.
For anyone who has hoped to see this sort of activity taking place at the waterfront, it is finally here. It just goes to show you that these fairly simple concepts can take shape with a little bit of hard work and networking. Thanks to Julie, the Erie Canal Harbor Development Corporation and Buffalo Place, the waterfront has yet another draw. If you're interested in the summer schedule for the market, check out SAM's Facebook page
. Or click here
to learn more...