By Mary O’KEEFE
Forget “Shark Tank” – Crescenta Valley has a kinder, gentler way to promote business entrepreneurs, and teenagers started it.
Last year the CV Youth Town Council wanted to do something to highlight the business spirit of kids their own age. They began Entrepreneurs of Tomorrow, which gave kids the chance to promote their products to the public. This was a way to give young people an opportunity to market their items and to build their business. The event was held at last Sunday’s Harvest Market in the Montrose Travel Agency’s parking lot.
Kieran Hayden and David Januzik, Rosemont Middle School eighth graders, were at the event selling their Emergency Bracelets.
“It’s 10 feet of cord on each bracelet,” Hayden said.
The colorful bracelets are stylish and practical and are popular with hikers and anyone who enjoys the outdoors. The cord can be used for setting a splint or a tourniquet, as extra shoelaces or lashing things like a tent.
The two teens learned their skill of bracelet-making from a Boy Scout friend and decided to create a company. A portion of sales goes to charity; on Sunday the receiving organization was the City of Hope.
Also at Entrepreneurs of Tomorrow was CV High School junior Matty Ritcheson who has been making chainmail bracelets for about three years. She also had leather bands and sewing kits in small glass containers that can be worn around the neck.
Richeson has found a niche in designing items for Cosplay. Her company’s name is Maiden Wares and features handcrafted Cosplay apparel, jewelry and accessories. For more information about her company, email her at email@example.com or shop etsy.com/shop/maidenwares.
Lily MacDonald is an eighth grader from Rosemont Middle School. She was selling handmade soaps, lip balms and gift cards. At first she was making her products as Christmas gifts but then thought to expand it to a business. Her company name is Curly Moose and she can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Alexis Karakas, CVHS sophomore, and her sister Lauren, a sixth grader from Fremont Elementary School, also had a display of homemade jewelry.
“Our father is in the fashion jewelry business,” Alexis said. The girls go to their father’s business and learn how to make jewelry and put their own spin on their creations.
Ealeria Borlauz was selling handmade bows. Her inspiration was in response to a practical need.
“I had bought a bow and liked it but it broke so I started making them myself,” she said.
Trevor Beauchamd, Rosemont eighth grader, had a little help from his grandma Sharon who crochets beautiful afghans decorated with roses. To find out about his blankets, call (818) 298-4074.
Anais Lignan, a senior at CVHS, had choker/necklaces on display.
“I have been crafting since I was young,” she said. Her background in crafting is a family affair; she learned her art from her mother and aunts. Her contact information can be found at her blog benchcrafter.wordpress.com.
CVHS juniors Joshua Choi and Leo Liu were at the event representing the school’s Green Club.
“We are selling T-shirts for our club,” Choi said. The club has a small garden in front of the school but members want to expand it. They were at the event to raise funds to help support the garden. For information contact CVHS.
Samantha Gould, a junior at CVHS, brought her hand-sewn bags to the event. They can be used for everything from carrying make-up to toting ear buds. She sells the bags to finance other things she sews including costumes. For information on her business, Samantha at Strings Attached, visit stringsattachedsewing.com.
Elektra Mirakhanian is a CVHS student and president of the CV Youth Town Council as well as an entrepreneur participant.
“These are homemade products that I sell. I made some bath balms and rose water,” she said. Mirakhanian was on the CVYTC last year and was inspired to join the entrepreneurs this year.
A large part of business is capturing the attention of the consumer and what better way than to get a little help from a robot? CVHS Falkon Robotic Team 589 and their robot was at the event and selling jewelry – everything from earrings to necklaces. All were made by a 589 team member mom who donates the proceeds to the Falkons.
For information and to donate to Team 589 visit www.cvrobots.com.