Ravenna’s Magnolia Market kicks off May 28 with food and live music

image of a satellite map showing festival booth locations

Live music, vendors, games, fresh produce and fun for the whole family in the middle of Ravenna. What’s not to like? The Magnolia Market, a multi-genre mini-festival, will offer a montage of arts, crafts, music, food trucks and more starting May 28, and then continuing every other week.

Market hours are from 5-9 p.m. at the Ravenna United Methodist Church’s overflow parking lot, on the corner of Riddle Avenue and Prospect Street. Ohio’s climate being what it is, if the weather is uncooperative, all markets will be postponed to the next scheduled date.

“We just want people to come and enjoy themselves. It’s going to be a really good time. You don’t have to be a church member,” said Kim Franklin, director of outreach missions at Ravenna UMC. “We just want everybody to come and feel welcome and want to come back.”

Among the 23 booths will be vendors offering handcrafted jewelry, wearable art, Farmasi beauty products, Color Street nail products, coffee, honey, Moon Farms produce and local floral arrangements form Twisted Tulip.

Children of all ages (that means teens and adults, too) will enjoy strolling magicians, balloon artists and face painters.

Representatives from Portage Music Lessons and the Ravenna High School cheerleaders will be on hand, as will Tube Wizards, which builds musical instruments and equipment.

Magnolia Market’s opening day musical lineup is Tavern 1888’s James Knight, known for his blend of ‘60s, ‘70s and folk music. Celtic Rush, a traditional Irish band with a nontraditional twist, will also take the opening day stage.

Subsequent market entertainment includes B.C. Hudson, Jesse Carter, Jim Weiser, Davey Squires and an open mic hosted by Jeff Gambone.

After months of pandemic restrictions, the market gives people something to look forward to, said Fallon Schwab-Davis, Franklin’s daughter.

“Ravenna is a small town, but that’s what makes us awesome,” Schwab-Davis said. “There’s a lot of diversity. We’re trying to make a connection not just by music and art, but just getting together again. Everyone can connect through music. Everyone can connect through art.”

Magnolia Market has its roots in the Ravenna UMC’s Loaves and Fishes ministry, which provides food for those in need on Saturday afternoons.

“Pastor Norma [Bates] came to me and said she wanted to have some sort of way to provide the community with affordable produce, and it has bloomed into this magnificent Magnolia Market,” Franklin said. “We are passionate about being able to give back to the community.”

Vendors and food trucks are still welcome. Table cost for vendors is $25; food trucks must reserve space for $40. Contact Fallon Schwab-Davis at 330-281-6349 or email [email protected].

Search Ravenna Magnolia Market on Facebook for more market information or visit Ravenna UMC’s Facebook page for updates. Information is also available on Schwab-Davis’ Facebook page, DJKrooze and Krew.

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Wendy DiAlesandro is a former Record Publishing Co. reporter and contributing writer for The Portager.