Each time you enter Ten Thousand Villages, you are transported to a colorful new world. So, local travel agency cum wine bar/coffee shop Departure Lounge was a fitting location for Ten Thousand Villages’ fifth annual One Reason Why art show and sale. Showcasing hundreds of the store’s fair trade products, this year’s sale was more intimate than those in previous years. Departure Lounge’s chic yet cozy atmosphere was the perfect backdrop for the event.
A definite highlight of the evening was the hilarious performance of Keith Walden, owner of Departure Lounge, as the live auction auctioneer. Ten Thousand Villages’ Manager Kitty Bird told each auction item’s story before Keith got the bidding going, even calling out guests in the crowd for not paying attention! Live auction items were as diverse as the four countries from which they hailed: wide, bright flip-flop bracelets from Kenya…
…nut dinosaur ‘skeletons’ from Mexico…
… recycled feather-light Capri Sun juice box curtains, and eco-leather totes from India.
As guests mingled and perused the night’s offerings, they noshed on Rollin Smoke BBQ appetizers such as bacon wrapped asparagus; petite brisket sandwiches; and arugula, fig, and cheese bruschetta. 20% of all Departure Lounge beer and wine purchases from the night were donated to Ten Thousand Villages.
Along with the live auction, there was fierce competition over the silent auction offerings from local vendors, with all proceeds going toward our store’s Moving Fun. A range of one-of-a-kind products and store favorites were also showcased around the Lounge, with Ten Thousand Villages volunteers on hand to share stories about our products and artisan groups from around the world.
One of the most unique art forms showcased was the Haitian Metal Drum art, made entirely by hand from upcycled oil drums. While this method came out a lack of other materials to create art with, it has now become a world renowned Haitian tradition. Artisans must use all of their body weight to flatten out the barrels, before cutting and carving them by hand to make these amazing masks. We think it’s inspirational!
If you missed this year’s event, it’s not too late to score some of its offerings. Stop by Departure Lounge, where handpicked items from Ten Thousand Villages decorate the space – and all are for sale! Or come on in to the store and we’ll be happy to show you some of our favorites!