From Really Free Carrboro
On Saturday October 4, 2014, around 800 people celebrated a decade of Really Really Free Markets in Carrboro, North Carolina. From the first piñata breaking at the beginning to the last notes of kora music drifting through the night as the Carrboro Town Commons was cleaned, participants worked and played together to create a day long Carnival Against Capitalism.
We asked participants what their highlights of the festival were. The free market’s first Spanish language puppet show was often mentioned as a favorite; along with a short play about political prisoners. There was also a puppet show with puppets that were found at a previous free market and reused in yet another performance. One really really tolerant young person brought joy to many by dressing as a cop and allowing people to pie him for hours. The food has been named with reverence and awe, and no wonder with a cooperative kitchen cooking 300 homemade veggie burgers and a second kitchen bringing a dinner of curries and chilis to share. One of our DJs noticed a toddler bobbing among costumed dancers from the evening fashion show, another person tabling enjoyed chatting with a much older long term participant who said it was “the nicest time she had ever had.” Someone helping with the music stage liked seeing the different audiences drawn by the assortment of bands and solo musicians. The winner of the scavenger hunt loved her individually crafted trophy. Silk screening of the I Got It at the Really Really Free Market design lasted well after the last banner was taken down and was one of the most popular crafts.
The Really Really Free Market has existed for ten years because of nonhierarchial collaborations like the ones that made this Saturday’s festival possible. Participants have withstood pressure to stop sharing food, to pay into the for-profit insurance industry and other attempts to limit the kind of relationships we can have with one another. For a decade the monthly gatherings have stood against the social divisions and isolation fabricated by capitalism and created a space in which artificial barriers can begin fall away.
Thanks to everyone who participated in this Saturday’s celebration and here’s to next decade.
Until everyone and everything is really really free,
some autonomous marketeers