By Emma Uber
Although 47 of the booths will feature returning vendors, the 2019 CarmelFest MarketPlace will debut a plethora of new and interactive experiences. For the first time, MarketPlace attendees will have the opportunity to select a pearl for their jewelry directly from the clam or immerse themselves into another world via a virtual-reality simulator.
“My goal every year is to make sure there are not many similar vendors at the MarketPlace,” MarketPlace Director Kay Thompson said. “A variety is very important because then we offer something original and fun for everyone.”
Vendors vied for booths at the MarketPlace throughout February and March.
“My role is to review vendor applications, decide which to approve and to create a map of all the booths. Some factors are whether there are already similar companies, and this year we decided to not allow any CBD products in the MarketPlace,” Thompson said.
The MarketPlace, which will be near the Carmel fountain, will be open from 3 to 10:30 p.m. July 3 and noon until the conclusion of the fireworks display July 4.
“My personal favorite part of the MarketPlace is walking around and seeing all the booths for myself, talking to the vendors,” Thompson said. “I end up doing most of my Christmas shopping while I’m there, too.”