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Peep These Shoes 

Richmond rapper Noah-O branches out in a sneaker showcase.

You may know rapper Noah-0 from his Richmond-centric party song, "I Got It!" — which got into regular rotation on MTV Jams and captured lots of attention for pulling in artists from across Virginia. Like any good hip-hop mogul, he's branching into sneakers. The Peep My Feet Sneaker & Streetwear Convention is a sneaker showcase featuring "some of the dopest kicks and garments available," according to a news release.

It's like a baseball-card convention for footwear fans — with a party wrapped around it. This local event is the brainchild of vintage clothing merchants Chris Northington and Virginia Commonwealth University graduate Kharee Hamilton. They connected with Noah-O and sneaker aficionado Herman Asberry IV to hold the first convention on the mini-blizzard morning of Feb. 16 — which despite the weather had a turnout of around 300 people.

"Sneakers have always been a part of hip-hop," Noah-O says. "They've grown together and the marketing is intertwined. I don't think Nike would be near as big without hip-hop."

Jordans are the most popular, he says. And rare shoes such as Kanye West's signature Nike can command as much as $2,500 in resale value.

The next event will be held at the Camel on Saturday, April 20, starting at noon (with a pre-party Friday, April 19, at Island Bistro). It will feature raffle prizes from the lead sponsor, the Source House of Sneakers, as well as a DJ hyping the crowd.

"These events are successful in bigger cities," Noah-O says. "So we just want to make sure the culture stays true to its roots in a way that represents where and how we live."

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