RICHMOND, Va. -- They may be some of the smallest business owners on the block, but they have big ideas and they are ready to put their work on display.
This weekend, dozens of Richmond students hope to wow customers and rake in the dough at the 5th Annual Richmond Children’s Business Fair.
The event will feature 68 "kidpreneurs" who will be selling their products. From t shirts, jewelry and cosmetics to artwork and books.
The Youth Business Exchange and Metropolitan Business League are hosting the big event Sunday at the Science Museum of Virginia.
Elijah Lee, who started the nonprofit Hear Our Voices will be among them. His business is dedicated to the empowerment of young people. He explains what he has gained by participating in the Richmond Children’s Business Fair.
"I got a chance to learn so much," Lee said. "Not only about selling and communicating with the customers, but I got to learn a lot about the businesses themselves and how there are so many young people out there making the change, starting businesses and making steps toward progress. It also serves as an opportunity to connect."
Alexa Lightfoot is the Program Coordinator for Youth Entrepreneurship Programs at the Metropolitan Business League. She knows the kids have been working hard to prepare for this weekend's event.
"Getting the experience to sell face-to-face with a customer and growing their clientele, that is truly ideal for any business, so our youth are super excited," Lightfoot said.
She says the day is about more than just the money.
"I want them to sell out, and to know that their product is valued and their business is valued in the community. I want them to walk away knowing they did a great job and the community supports them. I want them to know there are programs out here and nonprofits that will stand behind them," Lightfoot added.
Youth Business Exchange Vice President CJ Walker hopes this year's Richmond Children's Business Fair will entice even more students to get involved.
While Sunday's vendor list is full, Walker says there will be another registration in August for students who want to sign up for their 2023 event.
"Entrepreneurship involves being out of the box and this opportunity allows our kids to be able to do that," Walker said. "They get a feeling of accomplishment, so we are urging the community to come out and support the kids. They have worked hard, despite the pandemic. They have a lot of amazing products and we want to celebrate them. That's what this Richmond Children's Business Fair is all about."
The event is free and open to the public and runs from 1 until 4 p.m. on Sunday, March 13 at the Science Museum of Virginia.
Click here to find out more about future Youth Entrepreneur Programs with the Metropolitan Business League.
For more information on the Richmond Children's Business Fair, click this link.