Bakertree Festival

Covenant students and the local community enjoyed a day in the spring warmth at Barkertree festival early this month, an annual marketplace featuring a variety of food and goods vendors.

It was a beautiful sunny day last Saturday, April 1st — one of the first warm days of the season. Under the bright sun, 20 tables were set up on Carter Lawn for the annual Bakertree Festival, which had about 30 vendors this year.

This year, there were a good variety of vendors selling anything ranging from hamburgers and hotdogs to beautiful embroideries. The art is always very stunning, but the unique booths gave Bakertree something fresh.

One particularly unique booth belonged to Covenant freshmen Amos Corbett and Joey Bell. For just a dollar, customers were invited to dye an egg and hold a fluffy, white rabbit. 1% of their proceeds went to help the rhinos in Africa that are being poached.

“Really we’re just here for the rhinos,” Corbett said.

At the booth next door, Joseph Ricketts and Chapman Whitted were selling homemade kombucha and watercolors. Passing off her two dollars to Joseph Ricketts in exchange for a blackberry kombucha, Covenant senior and seasoned Bakertree-attendee Abby Horton stated that this was by far the warmest Bakertree she had attended in her 4 years at Covenant. 

“It’s the perfect time to break out your Birkenstocks,” Horton said about the beautiful weather. 

Horton also said that this was the first year that they had held the festival on Carter Lawn since she had been there. Grace Newsome, Junior and 2nd-year Bakertree vendor, said that, although it wasn’t necessarily boosting her profits, she liked the new location because of the “tight knit space.”

Another returner was John-Michael Forman ‘10 of Forman Pottery. A Covenant alum, Foreman has been a regular at Bakertree since 2012. He stated that it is his favorite event because the students are so appreciative of his work. His handmade mugs average $15 to $20. Forman said that is a little pricey for college students, but students are willing to buy because they see the value.

Forman was there with his apprentice, Claire Haynes, and her husband, Bryant Haynes. The couple is in their 60s and have been working with pottery and woodwork for as long as they could remember. 

Mrs. Haynes has been training with Forman for the past year and feels that she has learned a lot from him. Mr. Haynes makes beautiful handmade cutting boards, which he says are difficult to sell to college students since most of them don’t have kitchens.

The festival featured more than just art and kombucha, however. Jonathan Kelley and James Dillon were there cooking up burgers and franks, and Thistle Honey Co. was selling wild honey. 

Covenant’s CAB and Student Development jointly put on Barkertree, which happens annually and is an attempt to get students and the Chattanooga community to mingle over art.