• Tori Domenico


Image: The Wreckord

The wrecks are really pumped to announce that we are sponsoring MeshFest, a quarterly networking festival designed to make creating relationships easy and more importantly...fun (something we do best, obviously).

On Saturday, June 9th, MeshFest Wellness, Art and Music Festival will take place at NJIT Campus Center located at 150 Bleeker Street in Newark, NJ. Attendees can expect over 40+ vendors, live music, poetry performances, smoothie pops, photobooth fun, yoga classes, ballroom class, business workshop, live DJ and Yelp Selfie Contests ($50+ cash prize!) and networking sessions. Use the code THEWRECKORD to receive a discount on tickets {click here}!

We sat down "On the Wreckord" with MeshFest Co-Founder's Koren Delos Santos and Amiel Nicdao to discuss how MeshFest started, what you can expect while attending and past MeshFest success stories that led to new jobs or meaningful friendships.

Left: Koren Delos Santos  Right: Amiel Nicdao  Photo credit: Justin Lao

THE WRECKORD: How did the concept come together? When was it started and why?

KOREN: The idea for MeshFest actually came to Amiel Nicdao around October 2017 while we were at the gym. At that time, we were working on a different project, but it felt like something was missing. We realized we were straying from our original goal: to help entrepreneurs find resources and find the right people to team up with. People often have great ideas, but these ideas never come to fruition because they lack the proper resources and the proper team to execute.

Amiel continued to play with the idea of "MeshFest" in her head. That same night, we had a team meeting (consisting of just the two of us), conceptualized it, and eventually had our first event in January 2018 in Newark, NJ. As we got to know the people of Newark, and the opportunities that are just starting to come up, we figured this would be a great place to plant our roots and be part of the booming entrepreneurial ecosystem.

With every MeshFest event, we wanted to make sure that it didn't end up just another "fun" thing for anyone to do. Yes, we wanted everyone who came to our events to have fun, but we also wanted them to leave with at least one thing they need to propel their business forward, whether it's a resource that was provided at the event, a person they met, or a person we introduced to them because we thought it would be beneficial to both parties.

Our ultimate goal is to create a collaboration platform. MeshFest is just one of the ways we can find out what people want and need on the platform. We're currently putting together the wireframe for the platform and we're trying to figure out how to include what people like about our events onto the online platform. So, eventually, this project will have 2 components: live events and an online platform.

THE WRECKORD: In the past few years, have you had any success stories as it relates to connections that led to new jobs or friendships you can note?

KOREN: Absolutely! While we were still working on our original project (prior to MeshFest), somebody we met at a coworking space suggested that we create a platform because we mentioned that we wanted to scale it. He guided us while we created our first pitch deck.

A friend of Amiel introduced us to Leslie, the owner of I'm So Yoga Newark, which led us to the very first MeshFest event. Funny enough, someone who attended the event recommended CryOut Cave, which is where our second event took place. Then Casandra, owner of SereniTeaz & Juice Bar, contacted us after our first event to collaborate on BeauTea Social, which was our third and most recent event.

We've also been fortunate enough to have been contacted for multiple side projects thanks to people we've met through our monthly events!

THE WRECKORD: What can a new person to the festival expect?

KOREN: At WAM Festival, we'll have all the regular activities that you could find at a summer festival: live music, good food and drinks, artisan vendors, a photobooth, fitness classes, etc. When we were putting together our vendor and performer lineup, we focused on up-and-coming artists and entrepreneurs/business owners to give them a platform to showcase their craft and gain brand awareness. We also made sure that our vendors aren't just there to sell, but also creating value by engaging and interacting with the guests. In their own ways, they may be able to help anyone who's been thinking about pursuing an idea or concept. We also threw business activities into the mix such as a networking session, a business card drop off, and a business workshop.

MeshFest is a mix of business and pleasure. Come to have fun and let loose while propelling your business forward all at the same time! You will get to meet some of the most creative and entrepreneurial minds in the area. If you're an entrepreneur, it's a good place to expand your customer/client base! And if business isn't in your thing, then there's enough activities and vendors to keep you occupied all afternoon!

THE WRECKORD: What are some activities a person can sign up for? Any surprises?

KOREN: There'll be a bunch of activities happening throughout the afternoon like vinyasa yoga classes, a ballroom class, and a business workshop on the main floor. Some vendors have a few exclusive activities lined up at their booths, so make sure to visit every stand to take advantage of them! We'll also have giveaways and cash prizes our guests can participate in, so watch out for those as well!

THE WRECKORD: What kind of food and beverages? Any local sponsors or vendors we can highlight and team up with?

KOREN: We mostly have snack type foods, so it's easy for our guests to grab and go, and there'll be refreshing beverages like iced teas and juices available! Yelp New Jersey is actually a sponsor of the event. We're also working with Newark Centric City and the Newark Times, just to name a few. You'll also be able to find Casandra and Leslie, our previous monthly event sponsors, at WAM!

Follow us for MeshFest updated on Instagram @TheWreckord

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