Boise Women Inked Their Voice
A crowd gathered early Saturday morning starting hours before the first tattoo. Some traveled six hours just to stand in line to be the first 100 people to tattoo "Nevertheless, she persisted" on their body and donate to the Women's and Children's Alliance.
I saw a photo of two arms with the tattoo that said "she persisted". I originally thought that it was friends who got the same tattoo. I thought it looked cool and I was merely searching for a cool design idea. I clicked on the photo and saw that it was an event where women gathered in Minneapolis to get the same tattoo and donate to a women's organization.
I reposted the photo on my Instagram account asking if an event like that would even work in Boise. The response was overwhelming as people sent messages, offered to help, wanted to sign up and asked for more information. I started an event page, talked to a female tattoo artist (Eryka at Erykane Art) if she wanted in and within 24 hours, we had an event.
We were hoping for anyone to show up. We weren't sure if the interest in the event would equate to people actually showing up.
What we saw on Saturday morning was more than we could have asked for. The first tattoo was scheduled for noon. There was a total of 100 spots for tattoos that day and an option to buy a voucher for the same tattoo on a different day (should they not be part of the first 100). $25 of the $50 tattoo was being donated to the Women's and Children's Alliance.
A line started hours before the first tattoo and it went from the front door of the shop, through the parking lot and into the alley behind the building. Far more than 100 people showed up to have their voice be heard. To let their statement be known.
Eryka and her staff were all in red representing women, Chris Cruise was in the beautiful sun playing music for the women dancing in line and the energy outside the shop was infectious. My fiancee Janice was right by my side through this whole thing helping with plans, taking photos and greeting everyone. Mateo at night was also there and Chris' girlfriend Jenni showed up and went to work immediately. This couldn't have happened without each of them there being so involved in this event.
As each person walked out showing off their new tattoo, there was a story that went with it. From taking a stand in their personal lives to learning to love themselves to feeling confident in expressing their opinions and views without judgement - each person added inspiration and hope to the event.
After over 9 hours of tattoos and experiencing more pride in our community than I thought possible, the donations had been counted. Everyone was standing around inside the small pink Erykane Art shop waiting to hear how much money had been donated. In one day, $3,800 was raised for the Women's and Children's Alliance.
Grateful. Thankful. Moved. Inspired. Humbled. I don't even know what word could measure up to the feeling I still have.