On Oct. 12, 60 youth-run businesses filled Live Oak Park. Mikhil Kiran, 11, organizer of the 2nd annual Santa Clara Children’s Business Fair, reported this year’s success stories.
“We had a business called Evie’s Pet Portraits — that business got a lot of commissions where people asked the artist to paint their pet,” Kiran said. “There was also a business called the Lego Station — that business was about making and selling Lego structures and all of them sold. A greeting card business named Creative Spot received a corporate order for 50 handmade greeting cards. There was also a business called Just Stickers selling handmade stickers and they sold out.”
At the event, City Council Member Kathy Watanabe shared a few words and presented certificates. Watanabe also offered fundraising advice and invited Kiran to present about the Children’s Business Fair at a City Council meeting back in August.
“We requested a community grant for the fair and we received it from the City of Santa Clara,” Kiran said. “There was also more prize money given this year. There was over $1,000 given away in prizes. A lot of that prize money came from the City’s community grant.”
Vani Nair, 10, ran Art of the Artists with two friends.
“We’re selling canvases, coasters, vases and paperweights,” Nair said. “On the canvases, vases and paperweights are our marble art. The technique we use to make this is the acrylic pour. We take different cups and pour in different colors of acrylic paint. You put in each cup a little paint medium or water and that is what helps the paint be smooth and runny to help spread on the canvas. Then you take each cup and pour the different colors on the middle of the canvas. Finally, you can mix the colors by tilting the canvas so the colors would swirl on the canvas.”
Marcaya Geegan, 13, sold body care products from her business, NU Beautiful.
“We’re selling handmade soaps, bath salts and t-shirts,” Geegan said. “To make the soaps, we mold them to look like bath bombs and I put bath salts on top. I made the different colors for the bath salts from natural dyes. The bath salts are in jars labeled ‘Wishing Jar.’ After you are finished with them, you can put your wishes in the jar.”
Collin Wentzien, 14, and Ryland Goldman, 13, introduced a product from their company, Phone by Mako.
“This is a do-it-yourself phone and it teaches people how phones work,” Wentzien said. “The kit includes all the parts of a phone and a manual. People can assemble their own phone with this kit. In early June, we made the first version of this phone. It worked. We decided to start a company. We are trying to find a market where we don’t have as much competition as a company like Apple.”
“Our market is young to middle-aged people who want to know how a phone works,” Goldman added.