Columbus' 1C Church will hold its Holiday Vendor Fair from 9 a.m.-4 p.m. today at its facility, 2200 28th Ave.
More than 70 vendors will showcase a wide variety of homemade and craft-made items, from boutiques, shirts, hats, jewelry, rugs, doilies, kitchen towels, porch signs, door signs and baked goods. Admission is free and proceeds from purchases will be donated to the church’s youth groups for a mission trip to Milwaukee next year. The Broken Mug coffee shop will also be open, providing food and drinks for the guests.
Keri Robbins, a volunteer for 1C, said that the event was a good way for people to get an early start on their holiday shopping before the rush of Black Friday.
“We have a lot of very unique gift items and people can come and get their whole Christmas list knocked out in one day,” Robbins said.
The inaugural event was held in March and while people showed up, it didn’t take off until Robbins decided to move the event to November to take advantage of the season.
“Our November one was amazing,” Robbins said. “The vendors were thrilled with the outcome and their sales for the day. I don’t have an exact count of how many people came through the door, but it was pretty steady traffic all day long.”
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This year, the event continues its expansion, with vendors placed in a variety of different areas throughout the church, from the front entrance to the family gathering area to the gym and sports complex to the youth area. From 39 vendors last year, the event expanded to 70 this year.
“We’ve advertised a lot better for it this year,” Robbins said. “I think the crowd will be a lot better.”
At the event’s core, it’s all about providing opportunities for children to learn more about the world around them. Robbins is pleased that the event has evolved from a springtime special to a holiday treat.
“We just want to make sure our youth can get enough funds to help them make it to their mission trips,” Robbins said.
Zach Roth is a reporter for The Columbus Telegram. Reach him via email at firstname.lastname@example.org.