published Friday, November 4th, 2011

Craft shows, gift market on tap

The longest-running craft show in East Brainerd opens its doors today at Christ United Methodist Church.

The Gingerbread Shoppe was established in 1989 by three homemakers who lived in Hurricane Creek subdivision as a way to sell their handmade crafts. As word got out about their Easter and Christmas craft shows, the events outgrew the subdivision's clubhouse. So the three friends moved to Christ UMC in 1998. Their show has continued to grow there as well, adding exhibiters as well as a chili/potato food bar and baked sale.

Thirty local crafters will show their work today and Saturday in the Gingerbread Shoppe.

"We've added several new artists this year in addition to some of our returning favorites," said Red Dueker, one of the founding trio.

Returning favorites include Angie Carter's handmade Christmas ornaments and Cindy Lowery's clay creations. Shoppers will find expected crafts such as handmade jewelry and candles as well as gift items such as Guatemalan coffee and bath and body products.

If you're looking for a one-of-a-kind gift, check out the Museum Center at Five Points in Cleveland, Tenn., where 25 artists will show in this weekend's Appalachian Artisans Festival.

Tracy O'Connell said among the newcomers will be Lisa Brumley Bell, who works in watercolor, graphite pencil and prints. Her work displays her love for the Jericho area around her family's farm in McMinn County.

Phil Wallis of Ooltewah will show his handmade furniture and small sculpted pieces made from hardwoods. Peter Toth carves one-of-a-kind sculptures including American Indian heads representing various tribes.

Other work for sale will include pottery, painting, glass, textiles, handmade writing pens, jewelry and candles.

Belvoir Christian Academy, formerly Lutheran School, will host its annual fall festival Saturday. This event began as a school carnival and has grown into a community party.

This year's theme, "BCA Past, Present and Future," is a nod to the school's upcoming 125th anniversary. The day kicks off with a rummage sale at 8 a.m. Barbecue lunches will be sold from 11 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. And of course there will be lots of games for the kids and a silent auction and door prizes for their parents. All proceeds benefit the school's Parent-Teacher League.

FESTIVALS THIS WEEKEND

  • Appalachian Artisans Festival: Museum Center at Five Points, 200 E. Inman St., Cleveland, Tenn., noon-5 p.m. today, 10 a.m.-4 p.m. Saturday, free, 25 vendors. 423-339-5745.

  • Arts and Crafts Fair: Church of God of Pelham Valley, 5627 Roarks Cove Road, Alto, Tenn., 9 a.m.-5 p.m. Saturday, free admission, $10 to purchase a booth, bake sale, gospel music. 931-844-2858.

  • Fall Fest: Ooltewah Baptist Church, 5514 Main St., 9 a.m.-1 p.m. Saturday, free, inflatables, hayrides, children's activities.

  • Fall Festival: Belvoir Christian Academy, 800 Belvoir Ave., 10 a.m.-3 p.m. Saturday, free admission, $5 lunch, tickets and games additional fee. 622-3755.

  • Gingerbread Shoppe: Christ United Methodist Church, corner of East Brainerd and Morris Hill roads, 9 a.m.-7 p.m. today, 9 a.m.-4 p.m. Saturday, free, 30 vendors. 499-0618.

about Susan Pierce...

Susan Palmer Pierce is a reporter and columnist in the Life department. She began her journalism career as a summer employee 1972 for the News Free Press, typing bridal announcements and photo captions. She became a full-time employee in 1980, working her way up to feature writer, then special sections editor, then Lifestyle editor in 1995 until the merge of the NFP and Times in 1999. She was honored with the 2007 Chattanooga Woman of ...

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