Mi Reina Mobile Boutique’s debut at the Pop-Up Holiday Market was more successful than I had imagined. I knew people would love the concept of a ‘pop-up market’ and the showcase of Mi Reina, still I was skeptical that people would make it out. Moreover, leading up to the big day, I was feeling overwhelmed with both Mi Reina Mobile Boutique’s first outing in the public eye as well as the preparation of co-organizing the first ever Pop-Up Holiday Market on the south side of Tucson. Instead of waking up early for Black Friday or staying glued to the computer for Cyber Monday, the community came out to support local businesses and organizations for Small Business Saturday this past Saturday, November 26th. The south side community of Tucson was able to enjoy a one-of-a-kind shopping experience at 702 W. Irvington Road (outside at the east side parking lot). Bringing a unique and festive shopping “market” to Tucson’s south side, the 10am to 4pm FREE, family friendly event featured regional artisans, crafters and boutique businesses of locally produced goods. Over 25o people were able to check out an array of gift items and products, such as handmade soaps, beauty supplies, health information, home décor, clothes, specialty stores and much more!
While shopping, the public enjoyed lively seasonal entertainment provided by Viva Performing Arts Center (http://www.vivaperformingarts.com). Viva Performing Art Center is a dance and music school that teaches a variety of dance & music forms, such as: Mexican Folklorico, Ballet Tap & Jazz, Hip-Hop, Zumba and Mariachi. Under the direction of Julie Gonzalez Gallego students at Viva have performed throughout Arizona, Anaheim, Las Vegas, Denver, New York, Guadalajara, Acapulco and London. Ballet Folklorico San Juan from Viva Performing Arts Center performed special holiday dances and it was great to see the next generation of local artists on the dance floor (so much talent)! BIG THANK YOU to the children and families of Viva Performing Arts Center for coming out to the Pop-Up! Make sure to check out their Viva Navidad: A Holiday Cultural Extravaganza showcase on December 17th and 18th. Tickets on sale now!
There was also a story time corner set up for the little ones and parents. Make Way for Books (http://makewayforbooks.org) shared stories with families who attended and children had the opportunity to take a book home to add to their library! Thank you Make Way for Books (MWFB) for providing an innovative, community-based approach. Each year, Make Way for Books impacts the lives of more than 31,000 children, families, and educators throughout southern Arizona. Their comprehensive programs meet children and educators in the preschool and childcare setting and also go beyond these locations to meet families where they are throughout the community. Thank you for coming to the Pop-Up Holiday Market!
Children young and old were able to have fun and ride a kiddie train provided by Dulceria Funland (http://www.funlandpartyrentals.com). Funland’s Kiddie Train is the most beautiful and unique train in Tucson. It exists of 4 wagons and the locomotive and can fit up to 24 children. Adults can also join in on the fun and ride the train. It is trackless and can be used anywhere from your backyard to indoors even parks. Thanks again Manuel Alvarez for allowing FREE train rides to the community! Please make sure to check out their website for your party essentials!
Ohhh Photo Booth (http://www.ohhhphotobooth.com) made a grand appearance and provided a chance for those in attendance to take a picture in their creative photo booth bus! What a fun and unique concept! Check them out for your next party or function.
In honor of giving back this holiday season, there was a Toy Drive set up. Toys were dropped off for children receiving treatment and care at the University of Arizona Medical Center Diamond Children’s. Residents of Tucson also hosted a Winter Gear+School Supply Drive for the children at Standing Rock. Mi Reina Mobile Boutique was honored to serve as the drop off base. Please continue to donate your items to this cause.
Mi Reina Mobile Boutique is proud to be part of the first annual Pop-Up Holiday Market. HUGE THANK YOU to The Common Group (Founders Jesus Bonillas Jr. and Guillermo Gallegos) for hosting us. It was the perfect location! As you can see, it takes a commUNITY to make the dream happen! Thank you to my hometown of Tucson, especially the south and southwest side of town. Love you all and keep a look out for the next pop-up! Until then, please continue to support your local community.
○ Alina Jewelry
○ Ave Maria Religious Store
○ Community Investment Corporation (CIC)
○ Distinctive Steel
○ Dulceria Funland
○ Flowers & Bullets
○ Jiu-Jitsu & Fitness in the Parking Lot by JET Multi-Sport Fitness
○ LazyEV Productions
○ Maynard Soaps
○ Mi Reina Mobile Boutique
○ Ohhh Photo Booth
○ Rosita Linda
○ Sol Design Studio
○ Beauty Bar by The Wax Guru
○ Vero’s Wreaths
○ ¡Viva Zapatos! (and more)
○ Voter Registration Table by Southern Arizona Progressives
○ 1 Happy Ladybug Creations
○Kettlelicious Kettle Corn
Music spun by:
○DJ Luis Burruel
*Photos courtesy of Maria Alvarez-Almada
I could not have executed this pop-up with out the help and support of my family and friends, especially my cousins who promoted, outreached and helped organize the event. Knowing that my family was right by my side throughout the event, made me feel proud of our journey and future. Their love and support helped me feel more secure and confident and eager to launch Mi Reina!
Thank you to my husband Abraham Barajas and daughter, Sofia Luna for your love and support. Thank you to my in-laws for driving from Los Angeles to Tucson to spend the Thanksgiving weekend with us and for your excitement in Mi Reina. And of course, THANK YOU to my parents (Rene and Gracie Rodriguez) and siblings for believing in my “crazy” ideas! Your support means the world to me!