My tea enlightenment began in 2005 in Chicago. I brought it back home with me to San Diego, but never ventured out into the local tea scene. It seemed enough that I knew a couple of small shops and trusted a number of online stores. A big loss for me since San Diego has some jewels! Fast forward to 2009 and my family’s move to Las Vegas. In an effort to get out and explore my new city, I placed finding new tea hotspots Numero Uno on my list. Imagine my surprise when I did not readily find a whole lot of tea offerings here. If you want a $1000 sundae, we can hook you up. But if you want a good cup of tea, you need to work a lot harder! I turned to Google, started visiting my local Farmer’s Markets, visited a handful of coffee shops that also dabbled in tea, and surprise, surprise – began uncovering a small tea world here in Vegas.
In 2010, I launched Joy’s Teaspoon and began doing small-scale tasting and Tea 101 events at my local library. We had a great deal of support with excellent turnout and lots of great questions. I mean tons of questions! It was on these nights when I started toying with the idea of putting on a formal tea festival here in Las Vegas. If these many people, on the southeast side of town, had these many questions, imagine how many other local Las Vegans must have an interest in tea and not have a local source to turn to.
In November 2011, I contacted Louise Carruth, a local tea business owner. She and I discussed the idea and decided to meet up after the holidays and kick some ideas around. Our first meeting was fantastic and the rough bones of a local tea fest began to take shape. Now here we are, one week before the Las Vegas Tea Fest and I am ridiculously nervous with anticipation and worry – like “dry heaves in the morning” nervous. It has been a tough venture putting all of this together, but we are so excited for the tea drinkers of Las Vegas to have a chance to see the tea retailers, products, services, education, and demonstrations that we have to offer. Our hope is that this tea fest will bring awareness to our tea-drinking community about businesses and resources they may have never known were right around the corner. More importantly, it gives Vegas the chance to build a strong, vibrant tea community that one day can rival New York, Chicago, San Francisco, and Seattle in tea aficionados!
Need more details or interested in attending? Visit www.lasvegasteafest.com for more information! Now this is the part where you wish me luck!
I’m very proud of you Naomi. You are a true entrepreneur. You’re doing a fabulous thing for your community and I have a sense that this is going to be an exciting tea journey that will ignite an exciting opportunity for you. I know it’s scary when we venture into unknown waters but it sounds like you and Louise have done your homework and this will be a big step in educating and raising awareness for Las Vegans about the wonders and delights of whole leaf tea. Please be sure to follow up with us at T Ching. I look forward to hearing great things from you about this special event. New York City…..watch out. Las Vegas is joining the party.
Thanks Michelle! I am truly excited about the Tea Fest and I hope that it’s a successful showing. Should be a good time and I can’t wait to share how it all goes.