Diversify Week showcases variety of Chattanooga businesses, groups, individuals

Diversify Week showcases variety of Chattanooga businesses, groups, individuals

June 20th, 2017 by Dave Flessner in Business Around the Region

Betty Carolyn Jackson, seated left, and her mother, Sandra Everett, display TraciLynn jewelry during the first day of the weeklong Diversify celebration in Miller Plaza.

Photo by Dave Flessner /Times Free Press.

TraciLynn jewelry

TraciLynn jewelry

Photo by Contributed Photo /Times Free Press.

Mark Jones, owner of Legal Shield in Chattanooga, is among nearly 100 vendors participating in pop-up marketing events and business fairs this week for the Chattanooga Area Chamber of Commerce's Diversify celebration.

Mark Jones, owner of Legal Shield in Chattanooga,...

Photo by Dave Flessner /Times Free Press.

The Chattanooga Area Chamber of Commerce is celebrating all things local, cultural, diverse and inclusive as part of Diversify Week.

From shopping to business networking to local music and food, nearly 100 local businesses, nonprofits, food vendors and colleges will be among the daily pop-up markets through the week at the Waterhouse Pavilion in Miller Plaza and the Diversify business fair Friday at the Chattanooga convention center.

"Our pop-up markets celebrate what makes our region special, showcasing small, multi-generational, culturally diverse, innovative and creative businesses, as well as the nonprofits that support our communities," said Maria Noel, director of diversity and inclusion at the Chattanooga Area Chamber of Commerce. "At the Riverbend Festival, there were a lot of out-of-town entertainers and vendors, but this is a chance to connect with and support businesses and organizations of all types and varieties in our community."

Betty Carolyn Jackson, a broker for TraciLynn Jewelry in Chattanooga, was among several dozen vendors Monday at Miller Plaza during the first day of the 5-day Diversify celebration.

"We sell through home parties, special events and expos like this, which really gives us a chance to talk and connect with people and to see our jewelry," said Jackson, who has been in the business since 1989.

Today from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. at Miller Plaza, more local vendors and artists will be in the Waterhouse Pavillion talking with downtown shoppers and selling their wares.

On Wednesday, a variety of food vendors will show off the diversity of ethnic foods available in Chattanooga, including Mexican, cajun, Filipino, Argentine, Venezuelan, soul and other American cuisines.

On Thursday, nonprofit agencies will exhibit their programs and people, again from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. at Miller Plaza.

On Friday, the venue shifts to the Chattanooga Convention Center for a business fair and the Diversify luncheon, featuring Pulitzer Prize winner Isabel Wilkerson, author of the The New York Times bestseller The Warmth of Other Suns: The Epic Story of America's Great Migration.

Contact Dave Flessner at dflessner@timesfree press.com or at 423-757-6340.