Project Big Sister hosted the 3rd annual Black Excellence showcase on Feb. 1 in the McKenny Hall ballroom at Eastern Michigan University. This event had many different black-owned businesses from all around Metro Detroit, and it was here to introduce these businesses to the EMU student body in honor of Black History Month.
“It brings the black student body and black businesses together,” Danisha Grier said, the founder of Project Big Sister.
Many businesses have come to this event to promote their goods and services to the EMU and Ypsilanti communities and to bring more exposure to a larger student body.
“It exposes black businesses,” Shakira Ross, a sophomore and member of Project Big Sister, said. “It shows their true talents. Not everyone has the opportunity to expose their business.”
One of the business owners who participated was Anaya Robinson, the owner of Billion Dollar Jars in Detroit.
“[We participated] to basically gain more exposure,” Robinson said. “It’s a dessert company founded in Detroit and has existed for a little over a year,” Robinson said about her company. “I really like this event and I’d like to be at more events like this,” she added.
Some of the products that Billion Dollar Jars sells include strawberry shortcake, banana pudding, cinnamon toast crunch and red velvet jars, as well as Kool-Aid drinks.
Romulus-based Blink Twice is another business represented at the Black Excellence Showcase. Blink Twice offers beauty products and services to the Metro Detroit area.
“I feel great about this,” Johnnette Johnson said, owner of Blink Twice. “This is my second year here, and I’m excited that EMU invited me to come here. I’m so happy with their growth.”
Confections Factory is another one of the local businesses represented at this event. “I attended Eastern for a couple semesters,” Tabatha Washington said, the owner of the Ypsilanti-based company. “I grew up here, and I used to walk to Eastern a lot.”
The bakery offers many different kinds of baked goods.
“We do anything from cakes, cookies, pies and cheesecakes,” Washington said. “We’re about flavor, taste and happiness, and everything is made with love. I just had a girl ask me to bake her a birthday cake!”
Some of the other events that took place at this event included dances, live music and guest speaker Demetrius Harmon, an internet personality and actor who spoke about the black experience in the modern era.