Kaleidoscope Fest

Saturday, September 14, noon-7:00 p.m. (Tickets: $35–75)

Rhythms Live Music Hall

2020 Chapel Hill Road, #33, Durham

When chef Hadassah Patterson looks at a kaleidoscope, she doesn’t see a toy. She sees a tool.

Or, at least, the framework for one. 

At this weekend’s inaugural Kaleidoscope Fest, Patterson will welcome aspiring female entrepreneurs from an array of different backgrounds and expertise into a metaphorical kaleidoscope—a unifying gathering place for career and leadership advice.

Patterson is Kaleidoscope Fest’s chief organizer and the executive chef and owner of Triangle Gluten-Free (formerly Oven Lovie’s). She says the purpose of the event is to “create a space which brings dreams into crystallized focus”—much like a kaleidoscope—for women who want to start their own businesses.  

“It’s important that women in business understand how vital their personal support system is to their success and have the resources available to live an optimal life,” Patterson says.

Each of the festival’s seven speakers will speak about how to succeed in business, discussing topics ranging from maintaining physical health to making smart financial and legal decisions to balancing personal and professional goals. 

The lineup includes documentary filmmaker Lana Garland, lawyer Donna Berkelhammer, personalized wellness practitioner Susan Lovelle, and Jacqueline Mims, a former rocket scientist for NASA and the founder of My Global Stem Academy. Attendees can also partake in a breakout yoga session led by local teacher Carrington Razook Jackson.

“All of us have different, vibrant, unique goals and perspectives, and I think of the sum being greater than all of the parts,” Patterson says. “Each one of us has a purpose in our community, and by lifting one another up, we get to see those vibrant dreams become a reality.” 

Lovelle, a former plastic surgeon who recently opened the comprehensive holistic wellness practice Premiere Wellness in Raleigh, will discuss healthy living tactics for hardworking women. The festival’s keynote speaker, business strategy coach and international speaker Katia Ravé, plans to emphasize self-care.

“I’m all about business,” Ravé says. “I’m a business coach. But to be a successful business owner, you have to start inside, like you have to believe you can charge this much money. If we don’t have everything inside aligned, we can’t be fulfilled in the business world.”

Documentary filmmaker, Garland, who curates Durham’s Hayti Heritage Film Festival, will speak about the importance of having women in roles of leadership.

“Oftentimes, the films that get funded are not the films that will help us to heal,” Garland says. “It’s very tricky to be a woman in this business. We need more stories about women, and beyond that, we need more stories told by women.” 

As an example, Garland cites The Land of Fish and Grits, a six-part series she’s currently co-writing and co-producing. 

“It’s about the beginnings of the creation of soul food,” Garland says, “which started with indigenous and African women.” 

While there won’t be much soul food at Kaleidoscope Fest, there will be plenty of meal options accommodating those with dietary restrictions. Patterson says Triangle Gluten-Free’s specialty is “food everyone can eat.” Menu items include Mediterranean chicken and eggplant skewers, eggplant lasagna, Morrocan-spiced quinoa salad with cucumbers and beets, and a variety of local-produce-driven sides and small bites that service traditional, vegan, and paleo diners alike. 

The festival will also include a professional headshot service and a workshop on search engine optimization from pastry chef and blogger Jenni Field. Ticket prices vary based on programming options; partial proceeds from the event will benefit InterAct of Wake County, a nonprofit dedicated to ending domestic and sexual violence. 

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