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Julie Mccormick

I have done the Issaquah Salmon Days show twice. I feel the need to report the good and the bad. My first time was in 2014, Their rules for load-in were as follows: all cars must be off the street by 9 AM. I arrived at 8:35 AM to find a booth fully set up in my space. I found a volunteer who radioed in to the director , her name was "Summer" who said she assumed I wasn't showing up so gave my booth away. As a jeweler and experienced vendor, It takes me 5 minuted to unload and move my car. Plus, what full time artist forfeits a $365 booth fee?! Also, the booth was 100% set up, indicating that they gave my booth away by 8 AM at the absolute latest. After trying to move me across the street, next to a music stage/beside a 7 ft tower of amps, to which I declined due to potential hearing loss for me and my customers, they plopped me at the very end of the "Green-Belt" set on the grass 2 ft back from the curb and literally across from overflowing dumpsters. Nice. I paid $365 for my original spot, this spot was $315, and no I didn't receive a $50 refund despite my request for one. I made a meager $700 in sales over the two days. This is 1/4 of the sales I normally make at a new show. I was very disappointed and told them so in the post-show survey, for which I didn't receive any response whatsoever. I did not apply the following year out of disgust but decided to give the show another chance in 2016 due to learning there was a new director (which, apparently there is every year). Got a great spot on Front St, made several grand with post show sales as well. Perfect! I applied for the 2017 show, they had just switched to Zapplication for the app with a deadline of 8/18/17. Here's the thing, I applied 6/30/17. I was denied on 8/27/17 but then noted that scores of my jeweler friends and other local jewelers were accepted in early-mid June. Hmmm... They did not mention rolling juries, nor did they report the always over-saturated jewelry category as full at any time. So therefore, it is obvious that they amassed as many apps as possible, despite full categories.... without ever informing applicants. Super Shady. Super Unacceptable. I wrote to the latest new director, Wendy, that I was requesting a refund for my app fee since they were clearly not transparent with their application process. She responded that she was "sorry I was frustrated" but that they "try to adhere to their deadlines" Hmm, what? and that "they don't consider refunds until after the show". She clearly did not comprehend my "frustration" as I stated: "as a full-time working artist every single dollar matters". I really wish there was a way to make show presenters understand how they affect Us, without whom they wouldn't have a show to present in the first place. Here is my attempt and I hope it is heeded in some way!

Lyle Ang

Show Name: Issaquah Salmon Days
City and State: Issaquah, Washington
Your Medium: Jewelry
Year you most recently exhibited at this Show: 2013
Your Estimated Sales at this Show: $501-$2000
Number of Years You have Exhibited in this Show: 3-5 times
Attendance: (1 is poor, 5 is great) 5 (great)
Location: 5 (great)
Facilities: 5 (great)
Ease of Participating: 5 (great)
Sales: 4
Overall: 5 (great)
Booth Fee vs. Your Sales Ratio: Good
Estimated Attendance: 50,001+ people

Good Things about this Art Fair:
Excellent organization and good crowds. Weather usually OK. One of the best juried efforts -- a really good mix of high quality art!

Bad Things about this Art Fair:
Like all the shows this one is suffering from the downturn in the economy and people are just not buying like they used to. My sales were about half of what they were in 2010.

Advice to Other Artists Considering this Show:
Do this one!

Additional Commentary on this Show:
This is not one of the "easy to get into" nor one of the "once in always in" type shows. They jury everyone, every year. I don't think they have core of "invite backs". The ask for a sales report but there is not percentage taken so they really don't know the top sellers.

Approved Reviewer, name withheld by request

Show Name: Issaquah Salmon Days
City and State: Issaquah, WA
Your Medium: Jewelry
Year you most recently exhibited at this Show: 2012
Your Estimated Sales at this Show: $2001-$5000
Number of Years You have Exhibited in this Show: 3-5 times
Attendance: (1 is poor, 5 is great) 4
Location: 4
Facilities: 3
Ease of Participating: 3
Sales: 3
Overall: 3
Booth Fee vs. Your Sales Ratio: Okay
Estimated Attendance: 10,001-50,000 people

Good Things about this Art Fair: Crowd comes out for this event, this year the weather was perfect!! The crowd was there and was very consistent.

Bad Things about this Art Fair: Early Saturday morning load in, can be very chaotic as they do not control traffic and allow 2 way traffic entering the streets.

Most booths have a level playing field with equal access to the attendees. A few are put up on the curb, behind the rest of the row of booths and this is the "kiss of death". Happened to us this year, we weren't happy with the location and were told it was a high visibility location. Problem was, no one wanted to come up on the curb and walk back 2 feet to the booth. There were a few other booths set up close to the food court that didn't seem to be in line with the other artists booth.

Advice to Other Artists Considering this Show: Make sure you are on the main drag in line with all the other artists.

Additional Commentary on this Show: I like this show, might do it again, but want to make sure our booth is located in a spot with equal opportunity to other booths.

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