I’ve always thought there was something to be said for hemp jewelry, handmade glass beads, exotic earrings, hand-stitched ponchos and pottery that is so earth-friendly that grass will grow wildly out of control wherever you place it. There is also something to be said for a shop that sells products such as these that are made by fellow (but infinitely more talented) students here at Western. If there is something to say and be said, it is this: Groovy.
Groovy’s, more accurately. Twenty years ago a young local to the mountains named Tracie Turpin imagined herself owning a shop that would buy and sell from not just local vendors, but from students, and now, located adjacent to the ABC store in Sylva (as if you didn’t know where that was), that idea has been made real. You should shop there. Seriously!
“It’s a hippy store,” said Turpin when asked about the kinds of the things she likes to sell at Groovy’s. “Earth-friendly,” and “students and local vendors” are the sources of her products. Wal-Mart this isn’t, my friends.
But what makes Groovy’s truly unique is that Tracie Turpin is happy, giddy even, to sell student arts and crafts, and does, in exchange for nothing more than the word of mouth that students spread and the business that that brings to her shop. That’s right, you penniless art majors, you can show your crafts absolutely free of charge at Groovy’s and the proceeds go completely to the artist. With particularly hot sellers, Turpin may even be willing to buy them directly from the artists for sale in her store. It’s called Groovy’s for a reason, dig it?
As far as quality control goes, Tracie is happy to look at any kind of student-made craft, but reserves the right to not sell those clever mechanical pencil/rubber band/paper clip MacGuyver-esque contraptions you make during math class. Weave hemp jewelry or bags? Groovy’s is your store. Hand made beads? Groovy’s. Earth-friendly things? Groovy’s. Clothes? Groovy’s. Go to Groovy’s.
“But how can I get my crafts into the store?” you ask. “Surely it must be a long, complicated applications process that is unrealistic and only caters to rich vendors who have agents and lawyers and factories dedicated to making each individual piece of a plastic bookend.”
Silly rabbit, all you have to do is put on some shoes (or sandals or woven grass pads or whatever you hippies wear) and head down to Groovy’s to speak with Tracie Turpin. If she likes what you’ve got, then you’re in. If not, there’s an ABC store right next door where you can drown your troubles. It’s perfect.
Groovy’s is located (for you underage kids who I just know don’t do any drinking) at 34 East Sylva Shopping Centre open Monday through Saturday from 11:00 in the AM to 8:00 PM. Not sure where that is? Call anytime during open hours at (828)586-2402 for directions. Or just use MapQuest you lazy hippies.
Go to Groovy’s, if for none of the other infinitely cool reasons, than because if you’re not going there you’re going to Wal-Mart, and trust me, you do not need another trucker hat with a picture of a corona bottle sown on the back. It’s something different, something unique and maybe even something of yours. Groovy’s is, well, groovy.