Kenmore First Friday is back on The BLVD tomorrow, June 2, from 6 - 9 p.m. and returning to help us kick off the 2023 season is Oddmall to host “The Great Grassman Gathering” market – a block party celebrating Kenmore’s own cryptozoological marvel – The Kenmore Grassman.
Oddmall’s market features dozens of vendor booths showcasing the works and wonders of an abundance of artists, crafters, entertainers, and purveyors of games, toys, comics, and all things awesome and amazingly amazing to fascinate even the most jaded of curmudgeons.
June 2 marks Oddmall’s third appearance at Kenmore First Friday and the first of two appearances in 2023 (they’ll be back on The BLVD August 4 to host “The Rubber City Rumpus” market).
Oddmall began long ago in the ancient times of 2008 when Oddmall founder Andy Hopp and his wife attended Bizarre Bazaar in Cleveland – an event focusing on strange and unusual art.
“It was really, really cool,” Andy said, “but it was in a building that just wasn’t very family friendly. My wife and I thought we should do a similarly weird show, but wanted to make it more accessible for everybody.”
Oddmall hosted its first market in May 2009. It was a success, and they added a second show in November that year. Oddmall now hosts a dozen events throughout the year and has grown from an art show to a full blown market that includes people in costumes, reptile shows, dancers, live music, and other performers.
Andy says Oddmall wanted to host an event in Kenmore for a number of reasons, including the lore of the Kenmore Grassman – a bigfoot-like creature Kenmore residents first spotted inhabiting a swampy area off Manchester Road in the late 20th century.
“Kenmore's a neat neighborhood,” Andy said. “It’s gotten a bad rap, but I think, especially because of the efforts of Better Kenmore CDC, that image is changing and there's a lot of really interesting people and stores there. This is the third year [Oddmall has participated in First Friday] and the first year was our first show after quarantine so that was unique”
Kenmore First Friday and Oddmall’s Great Grassman Gathering kick off on The BLVD tomorrow, Friday, June 2, at 6 p.m. The event will feature over 40 vendors, speed dating, half a dozen live music stages – including performances by Detention and Funeral Proposals on the main stage –food trucks, a kid’s zone, the Magic City Brewing Company Beer Garden, and so much more!
And rumor has it that both the Kenmore Grassman and the Kenmore Cardinal will be in attendance.