By Sean Meyer/London Community News
Val Nicholson may have indulged in a little Halloween candy recently, but for the most part, she tries to stick to a very spiritually and physically clean lifestyle.
That commitment is one reason Nicholson co-founded, along with Krysia Kwiatkowski, the Sage Fair, set for Nov. 25-27, at the Western Fair District.
For about a year now, Nicholson and her partner have been working on developing the fair, which she says, “Combines spirituality, the environment and a healthy mind, body and spirit.”
Nicholson said the fair will give participants access to a wide range of environmentally friendly products and equipment, all-natural body products and vendors with different jewellery and clothing options. The fair will feature close to 50 vendors, Nicholson said, and a number of workshops ranging from discussions on the use essential oils to the benefits of yoga and even eco-focused comedian.
“We had been to many healthy spirit festivals and we felt we could do better,” Nicholson said. “This is going to be a great opportunity get in touch with your body, mind and spirit, with an eco connection as well. It is about coming together and leading a better lifestyle that is about more than just capitalism.”
Nicholson points to what she says are nearly 1,400 businesses related to either green ideas or the body, mind and soul in Southern Ontario alone as a key indicator the time is right for an event like the Sage Fair. “A lot of these are small businesses, serving smaller communities. So fairs like this are great opportunities for these businesses to get their message out.”
Although the Nicholson family currently lives in Burlington, Val’s husband Drew Thomas is from London, so when hosting one of the fairs in the Forest City seemed a natural. A second fair is planned for next June in Toronto, but the response from the London community has made planning this initial event a refreshing experience.
“London as a community has been so amazing. I’ve met so many great people who have truly embraced this idea,” Nicholson said. “Toronto has a different vibe, it is more about the business side. London is such a beautiful, open community. London has truly been a breath of fresh air. People have really come together to support this.”
The fair will serve as a showcase for not only ideas, but equipment as well. For example, Nicholson said there will be a lot of equipment on display that focuses on holistic technologies, including a machine that tests for allergies without having to prick a person’s skin.
In addition to the displays, door prizes and workshops, the vendors are a key to the fair and also the part of organizing the event that Nicholson said was among the most challenging aspects of bring the event together.
“We wanted to create a show with very little overlap. Obviously you don’t want to have a lot of vendors bringing the same kinds of things,” Nicholson said. “We want our vendors to have the opportunity to make some money, make it worth their while coming out. We have a real diverse group already signed up and I expect there to be over 50 by the time we get started.”
Having spent over a year working on the London and Toronto shows, Nicholson said she has nonetheless loved the experience. If nothing else, she has been able to spend her days doing something she loves, while showcasing, “some great, environmentally significant businesses,” all the while working from home with her three-year-old daughter.
And while she has enjoyed the experience of working on the fairs, they really have just given Nicholson the chance to further explore her own beliefs.
“I consider myself a spiritual person. After I had my daughter I really got into healthy living, nutrition, what it takes to be a whole person,” Nicholson said. “I’m not perfect by any stretch. I ate my share of Halloween candy, but you try and live your life the best you can. And the more I can help bring that information, that truth, to other people, to help open minds and make this a better place, then I am happy to do so.”
For more information, visit http://sagefair.com.