Yuletide Markets offer sweets, handicrafts, and more

We know that people were walking around two days ago in shorts by 70 degrees. But the calendar will tell you unequivocally that it’s the holiday season, whether we’ve all yet raised a feasting fork to the stuffing or not.

Today marks a big segment of the region’s holiday market season opener, where ceramic Santa Clauses, glittering trees and crafty nativity scenes and more make the shopping season bright among those looking more original and distinct gifts and decor.

This includes events presented by places of worship and those organized by others.

The annual First Baptist Church Christmas Market, scheduled for November 19 this year, began as a festive gathering at Jerald Hatton’s Great House, formerly in the Tipton Lakes area. In its early days, it even included a tasting of fine wines in the Hatton kitchen.

But as the event grew, it was moved to the church Hatton attends and now draws several hundred people. But one more thing has changed for Hatton, a longtime glass artist.

“I now sell more Christmas caramel than glassware,” Hatton said.

For those keeping track, he sold as much as $900 worth of caramel in a strong market last year — and at times doubled his sales year over year.

“It’s easy to eat,” he said of the treat. “And it’s not hard on the teeth.”

Here’s a look at the holiday markets the organizers told us about:

  • Open Hearth Craft Event, Flintwood Wesleyan Church, 5300 25th St., Columbus. 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. today. Start your holiday shopping with artisans from Bartholomew and surrounding counties. This is a craft-only event. FREE ENTRANCE. Hot meals available for purchase.
  • 41st Annual 12 Ladies Christmas Craft and Art Market, 8 a.m. to 3 p.m. today, Community Building at the Bartholomew County Fairgrounds, County Road 200 South in Garden City.
  • Annual Christmas Market, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., November 19, First Baptist Church Columbus, 3300 Fairlawn Drive, Columbus. Local artists and artisans will work in a variety of mediums including glass, wood, fabric and flowers. Sandwiches and desserts also available, as well as Christmas caramel. For further information: Jerald Hatton at 812-371-8937.
  • Holiday Market, Unitarian Universalist Congregation, 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Dec. 3, 7850 W. Goeller Boulevard in Columbus. Shop all morning with local artisans and nonprofit vendors for unique gifts. Then enjoy homemade soup and dessert for lunch. Finish by picking up homemade cookies and other treats to take home for your holiday events.
  • Brown County Christkindl Market, 12-8 p.m. Dec. 2, 10 a.m.-6 p.m. Dec. 3, and 10 a.m.-4 p.m. Dec. 4, Brown County Visitor Center, 211 S. Van Buren St., Nashville.
  • Carmel Christkindlmarkt, 4-9 p.m. Thursday and 11 a.m.-9 p.m. Friday-Sunday, Nov. 19-Dec. 19 30, 10 Carter Green in Carmel. In the festive atmosphere of an authentic German market, customers can discover a wide variety of products from Germany and other German-speaking European countries. A mix of traditional German foods, drinks and gifts are sold in small wooden shacks, and an outdoor skating rink forms the center of the market.
  • Christmas market at the Mercantile, from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Nov. 19, Farm Girl Mercantile, 436 E Jefferson St., Franklin.

About Dwayne Wakefield

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