Artisans Voluntary Platform for Non-Profits and Humanitarians

In this article;

  • – Artisans/Musicians; Platform for precedent setting plan for collective contributions to non-profits and humanitarian groups.

Dear Friends and Participants of the Revival,

You are receiving this email because you are either participating in the Yankee Homecoming Inn Street Artisans Revival, or have expressed interest in it. If you feel you have received this notification by mistake, or no longer want to receive these updates, simply reply with ‘Remove” in the subject line.

For those that are not interested in reading lengthy emails, or being part of a voluntary Artisan Platform for non-profit and humanitarian may just want to skip this one. This is something that has just developed over time and randomly suggested by some artisans. This is NOT mandatory or expected of anyone, but would make a nice group effort and demonstrate that not only were the Artisans capable of stepping forward and contributing to ‘their community festival’, but they are willing to set precedents in giving back to it. ; )

So we have the Artisans. We have the musicians. And we will be talking and featuring about all of them in the days, months, and year ahead. But before we do, lets talk a little more about the Non-Profits and Humanitarians. What are they, who they are, and their role in the Artisans Revival.

Or shall I say, the role of the Artisan Revival with the Non-Profits and Humanitarians.

In the Newburyport Revival presentation given on June 8th, ( there was what I referred to as an ‘aha moment’. A ‘critical mass’ moment in which a certain ‘understanding’ had been ‘realized’.  Earlier in the evening a switch had been made in the order of presentation of speakers because the ‘non-profit’ representative, Beecher Grogan of Lucys Love Bus, had to leave early. So, in a last minute switch, I changed speaker positions with Ben Twombly’s historical perspective, and gave the first slot to Beecher. One of the first things that Beecher said was, “I’m still not sure exactly what I am doing here, or what Lucy’s Love Bus has to do with the Artisans Revival, but I’m just going to ‘go with it’ for now.

After Beecher’s introduction, I allowed her to continue to speak, until the opportunity arose to ‘jump in’, and make a point. That’s when it happened. That’s when the ‘aha’ moment took place. That’s when Beecher said,…’Now I get it. It all became clearer to me now, just in the last five minutes.”


Beecher Grogan and John Brown share the ‘aha moment’ at the Newburyport Library Inn Street Artisans Revival presentation, June 8th, 2016.

That ‘moment’ had to do with the conversation regarding Inn Street, which, obviously, there has been a lot of lately, from everything to the restoration, fountain, transient vendors licensing, an artisan market, etc etc. And if anyone cares to browse my blog here, you can very well see that I have had a lot to say about it as well. This was never more ‘in your face’ when it came to last years Yankee Homecoming, with its front page daily news blast on August 1, 2016;

Inn Street Blues


The point that I was trying to make is after all the controversy, opinions, perceptions, and talk, at the end of the day, I didn’t want to lose focus on what the ‘real conversation’ should be about. I want to remember this point for myself, as well as anyone else for that matter. I’ve made the better part of my living off of Inn Street for the last ten years. The Yankee Homecoming Inn Street Artisans Revival, above and beyond anything else, has given me an opportunity to give back to the community in which I have depicted in my photographs and artwork for many years now, in a way that I never thought I could. It is for the artisans, the musicians, the dancers, the poets, everyone, but none more so than the program I have been developing for the non-profits and humanitarians, especially for the children. I know for some, with all my screaming and perceptions of the splash pad and kids, that this may come as a surprise or seem hypocritical. But its not. And if anyone has really listened to what I have had to say, you would clearly understand this. There is a place and time for everything and everyone. And with that said, it is now time to bring forth and clarify the Inn Street Artisans Revival’s program for the non-profits and humanitarian groups, especially those regarding children.

Above all the talk lately, there has been a constant overlaying viewpoint….how do we make it all work together? Somehow, the Revival takes it all, jumbles it all up together, and throws it all out there on the street. No one really knows how it will all work out, and I suppose we wont until next Saturday, or perhaps, long after Sunday, August 7th, when the dust finally settles.

But until then, I would like to take this opportunity to elaborate on the Non-Profit and Humanitarian program of the Revival. Its funny how things work out sometimes. Whats really interesting at this stage is that, the opening of the Revival is less than a few days away, and its still all being worked out. Cancellations, alterations, and other things have led to a ‘rethinking’ and utilization of the Inn Street area courtyard. The original plan for a farmers market and agricultural element of the Revival has all but been canceled. This is unfortunate because I had high hopes of this element and the true ‘Revival’ concept, to me, is not, nor will it ever be complete, without it. If the Revival takes root and continues to grow in its foundation for years to come, then the agriculture element must take root. (Pardon the pun). And if anyone is reading this and understands the plight and role of the agriculture and farming industry in this community, I hope that someone stands up, and comes forward in the years to come and make this happen. Maybe next year.

But the reason why I bring this up now is that it directly had to do with how the Non-Profit and Humanitarian platform has developed. Byron’s courtyard off of Inn Street had been ‘bartered for’ with the Market Square Craft Day organizer in order to raise more money and lend a better avenue for implementing the Farmers Market. Since the farmers market never got off the ground, I had to switch up some planning and began experimenting with the idea of using it as a ‘non-profit and humanitarian’ collective exhibit. Its funny sometimes how things come together. Sometimes the best plans are not planned at all, and evolve. Its a matter of going with it, and allowing things to develop on their own.

I even hesitate to be putting this all out there because it hasn’t fully come together yet, and everything depends on others to come forth and MAKE it happen. As a coordinator, you can only do so much. You can create the original idea, but you must allow it to grow and have the faith in others to stand up, come forward and FOLLOW through with what they say they will do. And until that happens, you can only plan so much.

Once again, its funny how things play themselves out. I have a friend who was one of the very first vendors to book a spot at the Revival. For months she struggled with her business and the commitment that would need to be taken to participate. She finally had to let it go just a couple weeks ago and back out. She wrote me and told me she couldn’t make it, but had someone that was willing to take her spot.

Enter Micheal Trombly of Fun Face Express. (

Micheal’s business, together with his wife, is face painting. From the Fun Face Express web site;

“Our slogan is “Powered by Karma™” and our core mission is to bring happiness to children, families and communities while providing young artists with opportunities to use their talents for employment and social good.”

11:11 a.m. Tuesday, July 26, 2016

As I write this, I just got a phone call from Dyke Henderson from the Daily News. He’s doing a featured story on the Inn Street Artisans Revival. Set up an appointment for a photo opp at my kiosk on Inn Street for 3pm this afternoon. I told him it was so good to hear from him because personally, I believe this is the story of the year. He agreed. There will be more to this story and its glad to see the local press covering it.

Now, back to the story behind the story.

So Micheal contacts me and we instantly hit it off. Our visions were aligned and we talked about how we could collaborate on creating a fundraiser for the non-profits and humanitarian groups. He employs kids and trains them in face painting. He is going to be setting up his 10×20 tent in Byrons courtyard and we have decided to turn what was originally going to be an area for the farmers market into a ‘non-profit and humanitarian’ courtyard exhibit, anchored by Fun Face Express and kids painting kids faces supporting the non-profits and humanitarian groups participating in the Inn Street Artisans Revival by donating 10% of their proceeds.

Each non-profit that will be in the courtyard will be doing their own fundraising project. The featured non-profit on the opening day is Lucys Love Bus, coordinated by Kat Couree and her daughter Courtney. They will have their own face painter, Julie King of Samarra Painting, as well as conducting other creative projects along the lines of a children’s based creative art fundraising. They came forward and played an important role with these ideas and were instrumental in sewing the seeds for later development for the non-profit and humanitarian element of the Inn Street Artisans Revival. They have beautiful hearts and I highly encourage anyone to come on out to Byrons courtyard on Saturday and support this effort. Please talk about it at your booths, spread the message, along with your best sales pitches for the duration of the festival!

Because this was only the beginning.

After that first ‘aha moment’ at the library, things began to really snowball after that first meeting with Mike Trombly and Fun Face Express. There are going to be some great fundraisers being conducted in Byrons Courtyard all week long including Opportunity Works, Order of the Eastern Star, Big Ideas and Small Solutions, The Pink House Project, The Newburyport Artist Association, and the Greater Newburyport Village, just to name a few. Ill get into the some specifics of these organizations and projects in part two of this article.

But for now I just want to end this section by expanding the fundraising foundation awareness by including a voluntary only platform of Artisans, and Musicians by suggesting to conduct raffles, auctions, and the like in order to make one contribution to a non profit and humanitarian project group participating in the first ever Yankee Homecoming Inn Street Artisans Revival. This is not a requirement or expected of anyone. It is simply a volunteer effort, reflecting back the spirit of many volunteer efforts that come together to make Yankee Homecoming the festival that it is.

Ive learned so much this year about these people behind the scenes, and myself. The idea to send a big collective Artisan ‘win win’ message, that this is what the Revival is all about and this is the conversation that we should be having down on Inn Street.

And it doesn’t end here. Just wait to you see what else is on the agenda ; )

Stay tuned for part two to an unprecedented Artisans Revival Voluntary Platform for  Non-Profit and Humanitarian Fundraising activities.







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