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Weekend Holiday Market supports Pacific Islanders

Nov 17, 2023, 9:10 PM

SOUTH JORDAN — You can get some holiday shopping done in South Jordan this weekend and support local businesses owned by Pacific Islanders.

In a world dominated by big businesses, organizers want to create an experience for Pacific Islander entrepreneurs to feel supported, so they can show off their work and find customers.

For the bookworm on your Christmas list, Utah author Lise Long has the perfect gift.

I write Urban fantasy books. I just released my third one on Halloween,” Long said. Her husband encouraged her to release short stories she had saved on her laptop. She researched independent publishers and started hiring editors.Long is one of the vendors featured at this year’s Holiday Market put on by the Women’s Executive Alliance. I’ve had people ask, why don’t you do a book signing and I’m like not fully comfortable with that yet,” Long said.

Analei Samasei’a is with the Women’s Executive Alliance. She said, “Going from a home-based business to a brick-and-mortar business is really scary And it’s financially a lot to do.” That’s why organizers are giving small businesses a platform to showcase their creativity through art, handmade crafts, jewelry, and clothing. Mesa Rith owns an apparel clothing line called BMA which stands for “Baddest Man Alive.” 

“I created all this while I was in prison. I drew it up and sent it home to my wife and my wife fixed it and cleaned it up. I spent 24 years in prison. I was just trying to figure out how I can pivot and evolve with my life, so I don’t go back to prison,” Rith said.

For business owners, like Jolissa Hong, their craft is an extension of their Polynesian culture.I’m a salon owner of JOJO & Co. in Magna. We are a full-service salon that provides hair, lashes, permanent makeup, facials, eyebrow extensions,” Hong said. “Most of my clients always become more than friends. Almost like family to me.”Finding a village empowers them to keep working toward their goals.  

“Our job is to really help them by giving them culturally relevant training, education, and opportunities like this to see if that’s something they’d like to move forward with,” Samasei’a said.

You can check out the ‘Holiday Market’ on Saturday, November 18 at the Embassy Suites Hilton 10333 S Jordan Gateway, South Jordan. 

It runs from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. and it’s free.

A toy drive is also underway so they ask that you bring a new, unwrapped toy to donate to The Road Home.This is the second pop-up market organized by the Women’s Executive Alliance.They hope to make this a tradition and offer more in the future.   

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Weekend Holiday Market supports Pacific Islanders