Pursuing passions during the pandemic; New local entrepreneurs pivot careers

Local News

Some Quad Citians are shifting careers and pursuing passions during the pandemic.

Changing careers during COVID-19 was an opportunity Rock Island native Kendall White saw as a chance to do what he loves. He left his corporate job to follow his dreams.

“I’ve always wanted to be a rapper, I wanted to produce and create an album and perform and all those good things and I had an opportunity to sit back and get some of those creative juices flowing again,” White said.

White, who goes by K.Wyte, started the We Rock A Lot Records company to support upcoming artists, and to inspire the next generation.

Kendall: If my son wanted to do something, he would obviously see that there is an opportunity to go out and pursue your dreams, because my dad was able to do that.

The entertainment industry has struggled because of cancelled events, which has caused djays like Eric and Emmanuel Juarez to pivot.

“There was a time where I was just really down. We’re entertainers and we love seeing people. So we found another way to serve the people,” he said.

They opened the Cafe Luci food truck, serving breakfast burritos and coffee each day.

“Word is getting out, and people seem to be liking them, so we are very happy,” Juarez said.

For college student Mariah Martinez from Davenport, who started her custom gift business XOXO Crafting Queen, she hopes others will use this time to pursue their passions.

“Just do it. It sounds very cliche, but that’s exactly what I was told,” she said. “Say it does fail. At this point, at least you tried it. At least you had that experience.”

To find out more about XOXO Crafting Queen, visit the link here.

To learn more about We Rock A Lot Records and to hear White’s album, click the link here.

Cafe Luci’s business hours are:

•Mon-Wed (3637 Avenue of The Cities, Moline,IL)
•Thurs-Sat (Empire Park, Hampton,IL)
8am-12pm

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