Monday, December 17, 2012

Thank You!

Wow, what a fantastic day we all had on Saturday! The vendors made the space look amazing, so cheery and festive. We had a terrific turnout all day long and some record breaking sales for vendors.
A huge thank you to Gina from the Rotunda for helping with all the moving and and rearranging before hand. If you ever need a space for performances, lectures, you name it,  the Rotunda is the place!
If you missed any of the vendors or regret not purchasing an item, their contact is all on on our vendor list. Also many of the vendors have their work at VIX Emporium which will be open every day till Christmas for all you last minute shopping needs! If you are still hankering for the Craft Fair Scene the Independent Craft Market is next weekend in Fishtown for a little more local love The Procrastinator's Last Chance Craft Fair is on Sunday at the A-Space in West Philly.

We hope you have a wonderful holiday and we'll see you in the Spring at the Woodlands! More info on that TBA soon...  

Thanks and Thanks!
Wilder & Emily
Also, if you have pictures of the Fest, tag us on Facebook for all to see!

Friday, December 14, 2012

Checklist for Saturday

Saturday is almost here and we can't wait! Everyone is so excited for what will be an excellent day of local, handmade shopping. For this holiday event we tried to keep it really local, over half of the fifty talented vendors live in West Philly, and the rest in the Philly area. We really do have something handmade for everyone on your list.

Don't forget to bring your:

Tokens - The Rotunda is a short walk from the L, the 40th St trolley hub and on the 21 and 42 bus line. If you are going by car there's metered parking on Walnut St, and a pay Parking Garage across. Free parking can be a little tricky in that neighborhood, but not impossible!

Cash - While many of our vendors accept credit cards, not all do. Did you know when you pay by credit card to a small business they're losing valuable dollars per transaction to a huge credit card company...? We're happy to take your cards, but we like cash much, much better!

Your Holiday Shopping List - We bet you won't go away empty handed!

A Babywearing Device - Last year people were glad they did!

Friends -  chances are you'll run into someone you know, but it's nice to bring some friends along and make a day of it!

Your Sweet Tooth - With gift items and gourmet pops from The Lil Pop Shop and Weckerleys Ice Cream it'll be hard to resist something. Black Orchid Foods will also be there with veggie snacks, lunch and handmade organic extracts.

Unlike last year we'll have select vendors outside and upstairs in the balcony. More shopping for you and the chance to see the space in a different light.

Can't wait to see you all there! Stop by VIX Emporium and As the Crow Flies & Co's tables, right as you walk in to say Hi.

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Introducing our holiday vendors

We're very excited to announce our vendor list for the 2012 GO WEST! *holiday* Craft Fest at the Rotunda. It was a TOUGH decision process, with more than 120 applications for fewer than 50 spaces. For this show, all of the vendors are based in the Philadelphia region, and a great many of them live and craft right here in West Philly. Supporting these artists is a great way to shop local, which directly supports Philly artists and small businesses. Best of all, you can find unique and special gifts for everyone on your list. We hope to see you at the show! (Saturday, December 15, 11-4 pm at the Rotunda, 4014 Walnut Street.)

Tuesday, November 6, 2012

Decisions, decisions...

The vendor applications are now closed for the Holiday Fest. Thank you so much to all the amazing vendors who applied! We have had an OVERWHELMING response and will have some tough work ahead of us. The vendor list will be posted by the end of the week for some pre-craft fair perusing. We're getting really excited for a great Holiday Fest at the Rotunda. Check back soon for links to all of our fabulous local vendors.

Thursday, October 4, 2012

GO WEST! *holiday* Craft Fest - Now Accepting Applications!

Philly crafters: you are now welcome to apply for the Holiday edition of GO WEST! Craft Fest. For the second year in a row, it will be held at the Rotunda, 4014 Walnut St. in West Philly, Saturday, December 15 from 10-4.

Though it can't be quite as big as our outdoor Fests, we are SO looking forward to this show. It's a great way to find unique holiday gifts while supporting local artists and small businesses. Last year's show had a great turnout and we hope for even more attendees this time.

Artists and craftspeople may find the application form and more details here. There is no fee to apply.

We look forward to reading all of the applications. See you in December!

Monday, October 1, 2012

Thank You!!

Wow, what a wonderful day Saturday was! A huge thank you to all of our amazing vendors and  performers, Perseverance Jazz Band, the Citywide Specials, Jay Sand, and tinycircus for making this wonderful event, and to Jessica Baumert the director of The Woodlands for providing the beautiful space. Then of course to everyone who came from West Philly and beyond! We hope you enjoyed you day and can't wait to see you next time!
Speaking of next time our Holiday Fest will be December 15th at the Rotunda so save that date and check back for more info. We'll be back at The Woodlands in the spring. Our vendor list  from this Fest will be up until November 1st so you can find all of our amazing artists online and see what they're up to.
Thank you once again and we'll see you in December!
-Wilder (As the Crow Flies & Co) & Emily (VIX Emporium)

Tuesday, September 25, 2012

GO WEST! Featured Performer: tinycircus: presented by tangle

Photo courtesy of Tangle & Anne Saint Peter
We're thrilled to welcome back tinycircus, Tangle Movement Arts' eight-woman circus arts company. Tangle's full-length shows like You Don't Say (2012 Philly Fringe) blend traditional circus disciplines like trapeze, aerial silks, and acrobatics with music, drama, and spoken word. Tangle’s outreach program, “tinycircus,” offers wonderful free public showcases, an aerialist extravaganza! Tangle members have studied performance and trained circus arts at schools from around the world to the Philadelphia School of Circus Arts in Germantown, Philadelphia.

 photo courtesy of Tangle & Maura Kirk
 “Acrobatics is a radical way to feel free and strong in your own body; we want everyone to know they have that chance,” says Tangle's Lauren Smith, whose goal is to entertain and educate. Through “tinycircus,” Tangle hopes to grow a West Philadelphia acrobatic community for people of all ages, sizes, and abilities. We can't wait!!

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

GO WEST! Featured Performer: The Citywide Specials

In 2001 a weekly bluegrass picking session started in a bar above an Ethiopian restaurant in West Philadelphia. This quickly turned into a hodge podge of mismatched instruments and musical anarchy featuring as many as 4 frontmen. A few years later they looked around & realized their line-up, sound, and sensibilities had changed almost completely.  The band re-branded themselves The Citywide Specials. With a ratio of about 600 gigs to 9 practices, Eliza Hardy Jones, Nikolai Fox, Larry Maltz, Jim Kydonieus & Kevin James Holland have sculpted & polished their sound without being vulnerable to accusations of slickness. The "Citywides" continue to perform weekly in their eleventh year at the same venue (Fiume at 45th & Locust) as well as weddings and private parties. Presenting songs and tunes on fiddle, dobro, string bass, guitar and mandolin, the band draws from the well of traditional American country music, including a healthy dose of originals (written by Holland) which lose themselves easily amongst the old favorites.

Performing at the Fest at 1pm will be Kevin Holland, Nikolai Fox, Larry Maltz, & Jim Kydonieus. Stage names are (respectively) Spitey James, Clem Miller, Cuss Ozwald, & "The Reverend" Elmore Delmore.

Thursday, September 13, 2012

GO WEST! featured performer: Perseverance Jazz Band

per·se·ver·ance [pur-suh-veer-uhns] -noun
1. steady persistence in a course of action, a purpose, a state, etc., especially in spite of difficulties, obstacles, or discouragement.
2. a hot young band bringing traditional New Orleans Jazz to the Philadelphia area.

Perseverance Jazz Band started in a West Philadelphia living room in the fall of 2010, where leader/bassist Jonathan Davenport convened some leading lights of the Philly music scene (including members of, most notably, the popular Balkan Brass Band the West Philadelphia Orchestra) to play some of his transcriptions of the Original Dixieland Jazz Band. As the months passed, members of the band dug deeper into the tradition and history of jazz, and discovered a wealth of great music that is glossed over in Jazz conservatory, and just generally doesn't get played all that much. Along the way they also discovered new friends and band mates who had long ago fallen for this irrepressibly fun music. They have also developed relationships with older players who have shared their knowledge out of a desire to keep the music alive. 

Soon enough, after many rehearsals and late night bar gigs, they stumbled across traditional jazz's natural ally: dancers! PJB is now emerging as local favorite of the Swing and Lindy Hop dance community for providing live music for dances.

PJB plays the 1st Monday of the month at Fiume Bar at 45th and Locust, the 3rd Monday of the month at the Porch at 30th St Station, and supplies music for a wide variety of private events, weddings and dances.

They will perform as an acoustic trio at 12 noon at GO WEST! Craft Fest at The Woodlands, 40th & Woodland in West Philly, September 29.

Visit them at!

Tuesday, September 4, 2012

GO WEST! Featured Performer: Jay Sand

We are thrilled to welcome Jay Sand back to GW!CF. Jay is the founder of All Around This World, a wonderful international music program for children aged 0-8. In Jay's classes, children explore the rhythms, songs, stories and dances of many different cultures, one region per 11-week session. Jay does exhaustive research in each region's traditional songs and customs, then interprets them into fun and engaging musical activities, dances and games, often involving a multitude of percussion instruments and props like scarves and costumes.

Jay began by hosting classes in his home in West Philly, which he still does. Now All Around This World has spread all around this city, with classes in Fairmount, Fishtown, South Philly and Center City, taught by some of Jay's former apprentices. This Fall, his West Philly classes will explore Latin America, Africa or South / Central Asia while other locations will do West Asia and the Middle East. Classes are forming now and begin September 12, so check out the schedule if you are thinking of signing up.

Jay will perform at the Fest at 2pm, September 29 at the Woodlands, 40th & Woodland in West Philly. Bring any young music lovers you know for some FREE hand-clapping, singalong fun!

Tuesday, August 14, 2012

The Vendor List is Up!

After a difficult selection process, the list of vendors is finally here! Over 60 local artisan vendors will bring their wonderful creations to GO WEST! Craft Fest this fall, like jewelry, accessories, ceramics, soaps, candles, home goods, clothing, prints, cards and much more. We've included tried-and-true favorites as well as some new surprises. Preview the list, then meet the artists and check out their work in person, September 29 at the Woodlands.

Vendors: if you were accepted for this show, please check your listing and let us know if we need to make any corrections. If you missed the application deadline, you may still apply for future shows. The next GO WEST! will be at the Rotunda on December 15, and we intend to do it again in the spring and fall as well. Sign up for the VIX Emporium newsletter to receive updates as they become available.

We are still looking to accept one or two more fabulous FOOD trucks or vendors, preferably those who emphasize local, sustainable and responsibly sourced ingredients, presented in artful, skillful and individual ways (e.g. not the ordinary hot dog/pretzel/water ice sellers). Their focus should be main lunch or brunch dishes, as we have already confirmed West Philly's own award-winning Lil'Pop Shop for dessert! Food vendors must be fully licensed and certified in the city of Philadelphia. If you are interested in being considered, please get in touch at

We can't wait to see you at GO WEST! Meanwhile, stay tuned for profiles of some of our inventive vendors, entertainers and other highlights!

Wednesday, June 27, 2012

GW!CF is back for Fall!

Mark your calendar: GO WEST! Craft Fest is back in the Woodlands on Saturday, September 29. From 11-5, join us and SIXTY of Philly's finest artists and craftspeople showing their wonderful wares. We'll also have live entertainment, music, and even a few choice food vendors.

Artists, check out our fancy new vendor application on the right. If you'd like to participate, fill it out, and don't forget to click "submit" at the end. The early application deadline is August 5 and we'll get back to you shortly thereafter.

We are so excited about our Fall show, the biggest and best yet. We hope you can make it!

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Highlights from GO WEST! Craft Fest

Thanks so much to everyone who came out for the Fest. It turned out to be an amazing day! Special thanks to our amazing artisan vendors and the entertainers: Jay Sand, Sour Mash, Jheni the face painter, Brien the juggler and Tiny Circus!

We hope to bring our beloved West Philly an even bigger and better Fest in the Fall, so stay tuned. Meanwhile, check out this slideshow of moments from Saturday.

Thursday, April 12, 2012

Checklist for GO WEST! Craft Fest

The trees are in full bloom, and the weather should be lovely this Saturday. What a perfect day for a Craft Fest! Here are some things to remember that might help make the most of your day at GO WEST! Craft Fest at The Woodlands.

  • SEPTA tokens. The Fest is right across from the 40th Street trolley portal, served by the 12, 13, 34 and 36 trolleys. Hop on any westbound "Green Line" subway/surface car from Center City (EXCEPT the 10) and arrive in minutes.
  • Comfortable shoes. While the Fest is conveniently close to the entrance, visitors may choose to explore farther into the 54-acre grounds and even tour the Hamilton Mansion, a grand example of 18th century neoclassical architecture. William Hamilton, an avid botanist, collected and planted dozens of various trees on the estate, many of which are now some of our nation's oldest and largest specimens, thriving among the monuments for over 30 thousand eternal Philadelphians. Stroll the winding paths and see for yourself.
  • Your Gift List. Our talented vendors make a huge variety of products, like jewelry, clothing, accessories, fine art, cards, toys, candles, teas and more, even honey produced right there on the grounds of the Woodlands. Keep in mind your loved ones' birthdays, weddings, graduations and other gift-giving occasions like Mother's Day and Father's Day. Your unique GO WEST! gift will be fondly remembered because it was made with love and care by a local artisan.
  • Cash. Some of our vendors do accept credit cards, but there is a good chance that the irresistible treasure you discover can be had for cash only and may not be seen again (even at VIX). The closest ATM is at Mill Creek Tavern, 4200 Chester Avenue.
  • A Picnic Lunch and Blanket. The Woodlands is a perfect place for a picnic, but keep in mind that besides Black Orchid's vegan specialties, there will be no prepared food available at the event. Pack a bag or stop by on your way to get a banh mi from Fu Wah, a chaat from Desi Chaat, or something yummy from Milk & Honey, Best House, Green Line or any of the other fine food establishments on Baltimore Avenue. The closest food/beverage availability is Starbucks, 4140 Woodland.
  • A child, who will have tons of fun singing and playing music with Jay Sand of All Around This World at 1pm, and be mesmerized by fancy juggling tricks and trapeze artists.
  • A camera, to capture memories of a perfect spring day, the flowering trees, historic monuments, and the dazzling aerial feats that TinyCircus will perform at 3pm!
  • Your senses of curiosity, creativity and wonder, and enough time to experience the day. Hope to see you there!

Friday, March 9, 2012

New Venue for GO WEST! Craft Fest: The Woodlands!

We are delighted to announce that this Spring's Craft Fest, our biggest yet, will be held at The Woodlands, one of West Philly's most special spots. Located at 40th Street where Baltimore, Chester and Woodland Avenues meet, this 54-acre "historic mansion, cemetery and landscape" is a serene and natural green space, popular with joggers, dog walkers and history buffs, as well as the final resting place of over 30 thousand Philadelphians since 1840.

The Craft Fest will be held on Saturday, April 14, 2012 from 11-5 (rain date April 15) just inside the main gates of the grounds, directly across Woodland Avenue from the 40th St. trolley portal (served by the 11, 13, 34 and 36 trolleys). In addition to FIFTY of Philly's finest makers of jewelry, art prints, home goods, paper goods, ceramics, wood crafts, clothing, accessories, toys, soaps, candles and more, there will be live entertainment! Jay Sand of All Around This World will do a kid's music set at 1 pm, Tiny Circus will perform aerial feats at 3 pm, and there will be random acts of juggling throughout the day. Face painting for kids, too!

The Craft Fest is in a space that is adjacent to but set apart from the cemetery, so show-goers need not encounter any grave sites if they don't wish to. More intrepid visitors may stroll around the grounds and view historic grave markers and monuments, including notables such as architect Paul Philippe Cret (1876-1945), financier Francis Martin Drexel (1792-1863), artist Thomas Eakins (1844-1916), abolitionist Mary Grew (1813-96), surgeon Samuel Gross (1805-84), and Commodore David Porter (1780-1843). The elegant 18th century neoclassical mansion of botanist William Hamilton, contemporary of John Bartram and grandson of the original "Philadelphia lawyer" Andrew Hamilton, will also be open for tours. His former estate is now the home of some of our state's stateliest trees, including a handful of Pennsylvania champion specimens, some originally collected by Hamilton himself.

We are so excited to be holding this Spring's GO WEST! Craft Fest at The Woodlands.

See you in West!

Tuesday, February 7, 2012

April 14th Go West! -Now Accepting Applications-

Now accepting applications for the spring Fest on April 14th. Please check out our vendor information and apply to We already have many talented folks in the line up, not to mention some wonderful performers that we'll be showcasing soon. We're really looking forward to an amazing kickoff to the Craft Fair season!

Friday, January 13, 2012

Thanks for an awesome show!

Thank you so much to all our amazing vendors and to all you lovely people who came out to support our local craft scene! It was a terrifically successful day, we couldn't have hoped for more. You can read a great PW blog post about the event here.

Check back soon for details & happenings at our Spring Go West! Craft Fest, April 14.