Since third grade Marilyn Cohn has cradled a tender space in her heart for the misfortunes of Africans, and a call from God at the age of 20 jettisoned her to Africa where she has built schools and provided general aid for her African friends.
Now, her passion for Africa has blossomed into opening Karibu African Import Store (2616 Colorado Ave.) in Old Colorado City where she sells clothing, art and wood carvings, among other items imported from Africa and exported to the aid organization Chosen Children International.
CCI works in the slum of Mitume, Kenya, a city dilapidated from AIDS and tribal warfare, where the largest concentration of Kenya’s street children and orphans live. CCI sponsors educational opportunities for the orphaned children at schools built by the organization and staffed by surviving tribe members.
Cohn visits the tribe twice a year and personally knows many of the children, stating “education is the solution to poverty.”
The store celebrated its grand opening over Memorial Day weekend and Cohn is currently looking for volunteers to help. The store is open Monday through Saturday, 11 a.m. to 6 p.m., and Sunday noon to 5 p.m. If you're interested in helping out, you can reach her at the shop or contact her at 634-5437.
For Cohn, her service toward Africans has come full circle as the passion borne in third grade is birthing positive action in the lives of children around the same age — visit Karibu Import Store and exchange your change for change.
Consider this your invitation. Instead of a blog, imagine a card decorated with your choice of spring delights — along the lines of flowers or ladybugs — with the quick-and-dirty (or in this case, probably clean-cut) information to follow, maybe written in a loopy form of cursive.
The party starts at 6:30 p.m., Friday, June 10, and $10 buys you a night of crafts and Cosmos (and hors d'oeuvres) hosted by Lucy & Louise Atelier (1925 Briargate Pkwy., #615) in the Promenade Shops at Briargate. Lucy & Louise Atelier is an independent clothing, gifts and home décor boutique. Products include those made from organic materials and locally crafted jewelry.
The party is in honor of Etsy’s Craft Party 2011, sponsored by etsy.com, a site where you can buy or sell handmade arts or crafts, vintage items and supplies. For this affair, crafters all over the world gather to celebrate a wide array of creations in their communities. The idea is to band together to (literally) make positive change. Last year, more than 5,000 crafters from Barcelona to Brooklyn threw parties of their own.
You can learn more about how to throw your own party at the Etsy blog ... or just go to Lucy & Louise. The theme craft of the night will be wire wrapping, and although the example is a flower you can create anything you’d like — a frame, bird, butterfly, word or even a keychain. It’s an easy craft, so beginners need not worry about flubbing their first creative endeavors in front of seasoned crafters.
And as if shaping wire and community bonding wasn’t enough, another party-guest bonus is a 10 percent discount off of any purchase made throughout the night.
Now you just have to decide what to wear.
RSVP by e-mailing Lisa or calling 635-2077.
The St. Paws Thrift Store (3275 E. Platte Ave.) is filled with the diverse staples of any typical second-hand shop: zebra-striped shoes, a blender, a bicycle and some miscellaneous glassware. But the item that best epitomizes the store is a lime-green knit sweater with a spotted dog on the front. It has nothing to do with the flamboyant color, but the unique mission behind this seemingly ordinary thrift store — to benefit man’s best friend (and other critters).
Since opening in February this year, this nonprofit has aimed to raise money for local and surrounding area rescue and welfare groups through selling items donated by the community.
On Friday, June 3, just over 12 weeks after opening, St. Paws donated $500 to five animal rescue organizations: Kritter Karavan focuses on education and giving small exotic animals a forever home; Look What the Cat Brought In is a local cat shelter founded in 2008; Hamlett Spay and Neuter Clinic provides affordable sterilization of both dogs and cats; Westie Rescue locally represents Westie Rescue Network Inc.; and SAINT Rescue is a shelter that identifies and adopts out abused and mistreated animals in eastern El Paso County. This was second donation cycle for St. Paws. The store aims to hand out donations every two months.
St. Paws volunteer and board member Linda Hoover says St. Paws hoped that the community would respond to its mission so positively. “It’s going beyond our wildest dreams, the idea that the community has gotten behind us.”
St. Paws President Vicki Doerfler says the idea for St. Paws sprang from the exhaustion of organizing just one fundraising event for a single rescue group — and then having to start the process over. She realized the need for a source of perpetual animal rescue funding that would allow groups to focus less on money and more on their main mission: rescuing and rehabilitating animals.
“Animal rescue can be so draining,” Hoover says. “It’s nice to be around people who believe what you believe.”
Donations are not handed out in a systematic list order. Each month the needs of all eligible rescue groups are examined and St. Paws then targets the groups where the donation will make the greatest impact.
Look What the Cat Brought In will use the donation to care for severely neglected cats they received from a hoarding situation in Arizona.
Jennifer Nosler is the president of Look What the Cat Brought In. “Every time we get a donation it gives us the courage to go forward,” Nosler says. “It’s a foundation to work from.”
Along with raising funds, St. Paws promotes communication between the various local rescue groups. “We want them to feel like they are part of a community where they are not alone,” Hoover says. “We are an additional voice for them. Not everyone can rescue, but we can offer support.”
So get your tail into St. Paws to see what all the bark is about. You can shop Tuesday through Saturday, 10 a.m. to 6 p.m., donate, or volunteer. Learn more on the St. Paws Thrift Store Facebook page.
The good news: Piano sales are booming in China, so much so that the Chinese market now accounts for 50 percent of new piano sales. The really, really bad news is that the U.S. market is tanking, with domestic sales dropping by 35 percent last year.
That news hit close to home today when we learned that Pianos New & Used, the downtown store that's been keeping Colorado Springs in keyboards for 15 years now, is closing its doors. The store will be liquidating its inventory over the next week or two, although the salesperson I spoke to today says the plan is to try to sell off most everything this weekend.
So whether you're looking for a Steinway Grand or a Moog Voyager, now would be the time to get on it. The shop, which is located at 413 N. Tejon, will open up around 10 on Saturday, 11-ish on Sunday, and continue each day as long as there are still customers in sight.
You can also call owner Rick Vokt at 389-1430 and set up an appointment for this Friday, when the store will be otherwise closed. Probably a good idea to get there before I do.
On a related topic, here's a song about pianos that I'm pretty sure is being sung by Bjork:
As the weather turns warmer, the yard sale signs start popping up like tulips. A wonderful way to spend a Saturday morning is driving, biking or walking local neighborhoods searching for just the exact whatchamacallit you've been needing, at a bargain price.
Of course, an even better way to spend a Saturday morning is to hit a community or neighborhood sale.
Fort Carson has announced its semi-annual post-wide yard sale, Saturday, May 7, 8 a.m. And it's free and open to the public. I've never been, but it sounds like a good way to score a lot of deals all at once. (In the event of crappy weather, the event will be postponed to May 14.)
And though it's a ways off, you'll want to mark your calendar now for the Old North End Neighborhood yard sale on Saturday, June 18. The area roughly bounded by Uintah Street, Monument Valley Park, Wahsatch Avenue and Van Buren Street, and which includes Wood Avenue, is known for its fantastic sales, with 90-plus homes usually taking part. Two years ago I picked up a practically brand-new Coach purse for $15, a shiny silver Pottery Barn ice bucket for $3, and a never-used flower cupcake pan from Williams-Sonoma for $2.
On a completely different note, does anyone know why the culture out here is to have yard sales on Fridays and Saturdays? I grew up in a midwest culture of Saturday/Sunday sales, and it royally stinks to be driving to work on Friday morning and eyeballing sales going up when I know I can't stop. Just curious ...
A few more shopping events ... and some Denver excitement:
• Ellie K Boutique (230 N. Tejon St.) is hosting another Girls Night Out event, this Thursday, April 28, from 5 to 8 p.m. Per Facebook:
Come join us for a fun-filled evening celebrating summer style! This is the place to be to get outfitted for all of your summer soirees! Want some fun, affordable summer jewelry? Come check out Stella and Dot's new summer line at our Stella and Dot trunk show. As you browse the jewelry and the summer fashion on the Ellie K racks, enjoy yummy treats (including Mya Bella cupcakes!) and an Izze bar!
Other highlights of the evening:
*We will showcase handiwork from local artists.
*A drawing for a $50 Ellie K gift certificate.
*We will highlight some key summer trends.
*We will have fashionable sunglasses for only $15!!!
*Priscilla will be here again doing feather extensions (from 6pm on)!
Check out Ellie K's Facebook page for some pics of the last event. I'm the one with the purple scarf on. Chowing down on an amazing Mya Bella cupcake.
• Kids' consignment shop Recess (1721 W. Colorado Ave.) not only will be extending its hours starting May 1 to include Sundays from noon to 4 p.m., but it'll also be hosting a Mom's Day Out Spring Sidewalk Sale on Saturday, May 14, from 10 to 5. The day's events will include new spring arrivals and snacks and champagne — and 15 percent off your entire purchase.
——- ORIGINAL POST, 3:58 P.M., APRIL 25 ——-
A few tidbits for the fashionistas out there:
• Like a live Colorado Springs Vogue magazine: Check out Colorado Co-op's Spring Fashion Show, Thursday, April 28 and Friday, April 29, from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m. at the store at 315 N. Tejon St. Runway models will present the best new trends for spring, while you snack and sip on treats and beverages. And every attendee will receive 20 percent off any one full-priced item in the shop. Space is limited, so RSVP here with your name and preferred evening.
• Now through Sunday, May 1, Eve's, at 1312 W. Colorado Ave., is selling all scarves and jewelry for 50 percent off. And starting May 2, shop hours will be extended for the summer: Monday through Saturday, 10 a.m. to 7 p.m., and Sunday, noon to 5 p.m. If your mom's the type to enjoy bubbly while she shops, take her to Eve's for Mother's Day for some great sales and treats.
• I'd be remiss if I didn't pump one more event (full disclosure: it's Indy-sponsored and I'm on the organizing committee). Repeat Boutique Spring 2011, a fundraiser for the Pikes Peak Justice and Peace Commission, is also this weekend, Friday, April 29, from 4 to 8 p.m. and Saturday, April 30, from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. A massive clothing/accessories/shoes/jewelry/etc. swap for all the ladies out there, Repeat Boutique invites you to bring your gently used items and swap them for as many "new-to-you" items as you can use. Learn more here.
If your partner snores like an F-16, maybe it's time to call in the NORAD forces.
No, not Adm. Sandy Winnefeld's crew from the North American Aerospace Defense Command based at Peterson Air Force Base.
Rather, NORAD of the oral appliances variety. No kidding. And just in time for Valentine's Day.
This item is a contraption that its inventor, Dr. Michael Gelb, says works wonders.
Here's a product description:
The NORAD is an FDA approved oral appliance for the treatment of snoring and sleep apnea. It is a "boil & bite" appliance which means it can be fit and delivered to a patient immediately without waiting for lab fabrication. This makes it an ideal temporary appliance to use when patients need to undergo dental work or if they've lost or damaged their existing appliance. The strong construction of the NORAD will hold up to many months and even years of use making this boil & bite appliance even more versitile.
Here's what it looks like:
Not very sexy, but perhaps just the thing for those insomniacs whose partners' wheezing, gasping, snorting and puffing rival the jet engines of the appliance's namesake.
Just in time for V-Day, a few sales you should know about.
First up, a weekend-long jewelry trunk sale at A Call to Life, 2502 W. Colorado Ave. The cute, if oddly named, shop that opened last August in the space Barracuda Bazaar used to occupy (now at 2603 W. Colorado Ave., near the also-relocated Envi), carries women's clothing, accessories, art and other eclectic household items.
Next, SuperFine Designs, at 1753 Eighth St., will be hosting an evening of "jewelry, champagne and chocolates." Perhaps you've caught previous SuperFine sales at Colorado Coffee Merchants? I picked up some great bracelets in December, each for less than my coffee cost me. (Not to say the coffee is expensive. More the other way around.)
Tune in to the Indy Minute — as seen on ABC affiliate KRDO News Channel 13 — each week for details on all the events that entertain and bring our community together. It's simulcast on KRDO News Radio 105.5 FM and 1240 AM.
Well, if you haven't been to the Girls Just Want to Have Fun sale yet, you can still make it. (Get all the details at our blog post here.)
I heard from Rachel Wescott today, and waiting may have saved you even more money. She says discounts have been dropped yet again. Clothing is now 85 percent off, shoes and belts are 80 percent off, purses are 75 percent off, jewelry is 70 percent off, and any yellow tags are an additional 25 percent off.
You better hurry though (seriously, this time). Wescott says they have to be out of the building by Jan. 31.
It's called abebooks.com and it's actually been around since 1996. (It's now a subsidiary of Amazon, but still run independently.)
Anyways, AbeBooks connects you to thousands of booksellers from around the world, allowing you to find virtually any book — even first editions, out-of-print and signed copies. Plus the prices are just fantastic. I found a copy of Charles Dickens' Bleak House for a dollar (or $2.73 with shipping). All of which means that the site is not only fantastic for book junkies, but also for folks looking for affordable gifts. (Anyone?)
Here's what AbeBooks says about itself: "AbeBooks is an online marketplace for books. Millions of new, used, rare, and out-of-print books are offered for sale through the AbeBooks websites from thousands of booksellers around the world. Readers can find bestsellers, collectors can find rare books, students can find new and used textbooks, and treasure hunters can find long-lost books."
You know what this means: One less excuse for why I have yet to read Bleak House. On the other hand, perhaps the holiday season calls for a different (and less tedious) Dickens classic, A Christmas Carol. AbeBooks, of course, is selling that too. And at $2.62, shipping included, it's quite a steal.
So it's Dec. 9, and the clock is ticking — and if the clock wasn't ticking, it's ticking now because, you know, I said so. Anyway, so the clock is ticking, and you're thinking about how much you hate leaving the house, or how much you hate coming home, or you're just experiencing general hate. And you might be hating the Christmas dinner plans, or the health of The Blue and Orange or Julian Assange. But what you're not hating, because it's impossible, is your state: good ol' Colorado.
But you're not just not-hating Colorado. You're thinking how completely bad-ass this square bit of free-thinking (medicinal) pot tokers is, and wondering how to show your pride in all things "colorful." Well, my state-triotic friend, I've found it for you, for you to give to others, and then borrow back and keep:
I've been designing shirts free of logos and brand names for several years and releasing them under the name, Adam Sikorski, because that is my name. Whenever I was stumped on a new idea my roommate at the old warehouse would come up to me all stoned up and say, "How about a shirt that says Coloradical?" This happened reasonably often. I wrote it off as a bad weed-induced idea for a long time, and eventually said to myself, "Well, how about a shirt that says Coloradical?"
Here’s yet another way to find those perfect gifts that you didn’t see in today’s Gift Guide. The 3rd Annual Adam’s Mountain Holiday Bazaar is one of the most unique shopping experiences around this season.
Do you dread holiday shopping because of experiences like the Black Friday madness? You can expect a very different atmosphere at the bazaar. Enjoy a relaxing shopping trip topped off with holiday music and hot, spiced wine from Swirl Wine Emporium.
If you still need to find those one-of-a-kind gifts, stop by for high quality handmade, fair trade and local “boutique style” sustainable gifts. Offerings will range from eco-friendly plush toys to wildflower jewelry to pottery and baby clothes.
The Holiday Bazaar is Monday, December 6th from 4 to 8 p.m. at Adam’s Mountain Café (934 Manitou Ave. #102) in Manitou Springs. It will benefit the Empty Stocking Fund that provides resources for local health and human service agencies in the area.
Hosted by Yobel Market co-founder Sarah Ray (www.yobelmarket.com), 20 artists and vendors were chosen for the bazaar because of their “unique and sustainable gifts that have value and meaning.” Yobel Market aims to be a global market that inspires awareness and promotes social justice. It is committed to using micro-financing and fair trade principles to provide sustainable economic opportunities to improve the lives of the “marginalized people of the world.
Wondering where the name “Yobel” came from? According to Yobel Market’s website, the name is Hebrew for “jubilee” meaning freedom, release from captivity, cancellation of debts, the turning of tables, stabilization and restoration of the land, redemption for the poor, and celebration.
When you’re done shopping, don’t forget to check out nearby attractions like the arcade.
Tune into the Indy Minute — as seen on ABC affiliate KRDO News Channel 13 — each week for details on all the events that entertain and bring our community together. It's simulcast on KRDO News Radio 105.5 FM and 1240 AM.
Well, if Santa wasn’t scary enough before, now they’ve turned him green.
In a stunning display of marketing irony, the reindeer-driving, elf-exploiting, candy-cane-throne-sitting God of Holiday Overconsumption has joined the sustainability movement. At the Promenade Shops at Briargate, eco-conscious parents can teach their tots about the joys of materialism and the joys of recycling at the same time with a visit to Green Santa, brought to you by Colorado Springs Utilities and the letter Y.*
On Saturday, Dec. 4, Green Santa will be roving the shopping center from noon to 4 p.m., posing for photos and dispensing eco-friendly holiday wisdom. The following Friday, he’ll set up for photo shoots inside Furniture Connection, where each child gets his or her very own energy-saving CFL light bulb (in lieu of the traditional candy cane, perhaps?).
If I find myself in need of a dose of that saintly holiday feeling, I won’t be paying a visit to an AARP member who likes to cosplay as a fourth-century Turkish bishop**, however small his carbon footprint. Instead, I’ll probably head over to the Bonfils Blood Drive, which is also happening Dec. 4 at the Promenade Shops. Drop-ins are welcome from 10:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m., but you can also call 303/363-2300 or 800/365-0006 to make an appointment ahead of time.
As Indy reporter J. Adrian Stanley (who used to work in an ER) will tell you, the winter holidays are the worst time of year for accidents and injuries. Why not give your kids an object lesson in “giving of yourself”?
Call me a Grinch if you like, but I’m not the one who’s green.
* As in, “Y did the marketing department at CS Utilities decide to get high before coming to work?”
** Fun fact: Saint Francis of Assisi is actually the patron saint of the environment. According to Wikipedia, Saint Nicholas gets children, sailors, merchants, broadcasters, the falsely accused, prostitutes, repentant thieves, pharmacists, archers and pawnbrokers. No wonder he hires a bunch of doppelgangers every Christmas.