Minority-Owned Vendors to Shop at Summerfest

Check out these vendors when you’re at the Big Gig this weekend.

BMO HARRIS AWARDED their EMpower Grant to nine minority-owned businesses to help them sell at Summerfest this year through funding and educational opportunities. See what these artisans are bringing to the Big Gig and make sure to check them out when you’re ‘festing this weekend. 

1. Scents & Such

Owner Ashley Bester creates colorful candles to spark joy. Non-toxic and zinc and lead free, the soy wax candles are crafted to represent important people and memories in Bester’s life. Check out best-seller Saturday Morning – a neutral, citrusy scent that’s an ode to weekends cleaning with her family.

Scents & Such at Summerfest 2022; Photo by Rachel Comande

2. Papyrus & Charms

With every piece of hand-made jewelry and crystals that Papyrus & Charms owner Lilo Allen sells, Afro-Caribbean culture is celebrated. Looking for ways to practice self-care and be stylish? Allen has something for you.

3. Golden Reign

This jeweler is all about creating art you can wear. Executive Director Bianca Gedeon sees designing and making jewelry as more than a job; to her, it’s an artform. Golden Reign sells original pieces made with unique materials including coral, turquoise, fossils and more.

Golden Reign; Photo by Rachel Comande

4. Keepnitmil

Local entrepreneur Cesar Cornier celebrates Milwaukee’s art, music and culture with apparel and posters in the hopes of creating a larger feeling of unity. Cornier is also musician and sells his original remixes on BeatStars.

5. Khepra Jewelers

At Khepra Jewelers, second- and third-generation jewelers design statement pieces with natural gemstones and precious metals. The Corona family sets out hand-craft necklaces, rings, bracelets and other accessories that are one-of-a-kind and could be passed down for generations.

Khepra Jewelers at Summerfest 2022; Photo by Rachel Comande

6. Necessary Pieces

Inner beauty and outer beauty collide at Edna Peterson’s boutique. Using silver, semi-precious stones, amber, leather and cloth, Peterson creates jewelry meant to empower women and make them feel connected with their inner selves.

7. Badass Baubles

If you see a tent with the slogan “Empowering with a wee bit of sass,” you’ve found Badass Baubles. Owner Lori Budnick promises attitude, and she delivers. Tired of products telling her to “Live, Laugh, Love,” Budnick sells hand-pressed jewelry imprinted with swear words and – as promised – plenty of sass.

Badass Baubles at Summerfest 2022; Photo by Rachel Comande

8. Originails

Spend your weekend at Summerfest with style and, of course, some glitter. Melanie Zarth is doing hand-painted temporary tattoos and glitter body paint for anyone ready to embrace the festival spirit.

9. RuvaAfricWear

Sylvester Ndhlovu designs his products – athleisure wear, headwear, jewelry and fanny packs – with the goal of celebrating African culture. The lifestyle brand works to change the narrative around African fashion and empower those who wear it.

Ruva AfricWear at Summerfest 2022; Photo by Rachel Comande