Christmas Connection is returning to Kingsport for its 34th year. Contributed photo.
Folks looking to get a jump start on their holiday shopping will have plenty of opportunities to pick up unique gifts for everyone on their Christmas lists as the region readies for a spate of seasonal arts and crafts shows in the coming weeks.
Among them are Kingsport’s Christmas Connection arts and crafts show, returning for its 34th year Nov. 8-10 at the Civic Auditorium, located on Fort Henry Drive next to Dobyns-Bennett High School.
Hours for the sale, sponsored by the Kingsport Office of Cultural Arts, are noon to 6 p.m., Nov. 8; 10 a.m. to 6 p.m., Nov. 9; and noon to 5 p.m., Nov. 10. Admission is free.
The auditorium’s main hall will be filled with holiday wreaths and floral arrangements, primitive and country crafts, Christmas ornaments, pottery, stained glass, woodcrafts, handmade soaps and lotions, fabric crafts, needlework, doll clothing, true-to-life baby dolls, jewelry, dichroic glass, handmade greeting cards and paper art, leather crafts, baskets, paintings, figurines, candles, baked goods and more.
This year, courtesy of Bubba’s Book Store, several regional authors will be on hand each day to sign copies of and read excerpts from their books in the Civic Auditorium’s West Room. Also on the Civic Auditorium’s west side, members of Kingsport’s Senior Artisan Center will be set up selling their wares.
Shoppers who work up an appetite can purchase homemade soups and cornbread, chili, hot dogs and nachos from the Christmas Connection Café or satisfy their sweet tooth with breads, cookies, cakes, pies and pumpkin rolls offered at the show’s popular bake sale at the entry of the building. Outside, patrons will find freshly popped kettle corn and funnel cakes available for purchase.
For more information, call 392-8415.
• The Greeneville Woman’s Club will wrap up its 43rd Annual Holiday Expo and Craft Bazaar from noon to 5 p.m., today at Hal Henard Elementary School on Vann Road in Greeneville.
Admission is $3; children 12 and younger are admitted free.
The event features more than 80 vendors as well as food, holiday music and door prizes.
This year’s featured personalized ornaments — wooden discs featuring a Christmas tree cut-out — were handcrafted by Jimmy Rader.
Proceeds from the event go back into the community in the areas of the arts, conservation, education, home life, international affairs and public affairs.
For more information, email firstname.lastname@example.org.
• The Elizabethton Woman’s Club’s second annual Christmas Arts and Craft Show, featuring a variety of unique hand-made items, is slated for 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., Nov. 8 and 9 at the Elizabethton Parks and Recreation Center, 300 W. Mill St.
• The Town of Jonesborough’s 32nd annual Holiday Craft Show and Sale will be held from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., Nov. 8 and 9 at the Historic Jonesborough Visitors Center.
Admission is $1 for adults and free for children 12 and younger.
Local and regional artisans and crafters, as well as residents from surrounding states, will be selling a variety of items, including Christmas and fall décor, handbags, woodcarvings, jewelry, books, quilted items, local photography, aprons and clothing.
For more information, visit www.historicjonesborough.com or call (423) 753-1010.
• William King Museum’s 15th annual Mistletoe Market will return to the Southwest Virginia Higher Education Center in Abingdon, Va., Nov. 8-10, with a number of new offerings.
For the first time in the market’s history, several seasonal workshops — covering everything from decorating a holiday table to fairy gardening — will be offered during the event. At 1 p.m., Nov. 9, author and speaker Ruth Graham, daughter of evangelist Billy Graham and Ruth Bell Graham, will bring a special Christmas message and share the story of her new line of “no strings attached” aprons. There will also be a book signing and photo session with Graham. Pre-registration for it and the other workshops is suggested but not required. Tickets can be purchased in advance on the William King Museum’s website.
The market’s entertainment lineup has been expanded to include all three days, and three café vendors will offer a daily selection of soups, salads, sandwiches and desserts.
Mistletoe Market will also have several new merchants attending this year, selling heirloom candles, children and doll clothing, therapeutic essential oils, Christmas baskets, yarn, unique jewelry, baby items and more.
Hours are 9 a.m. to 7 p.m., Nov. 8 and 9; and 11 a.m. to 5 p.m., Nov. 10.
Admission is $6 for adults, $4 for children ages 6-12 and free for children 5 and younger.
A Prevue Gala will be held from 7 to 10 p.m., Nov. 7 at the Higher Ed Center. Tickets are $100 per person and include heavy hors d’oeuvres by The Troutdale, three complimentary drink tickets and weekend admission to Mistletoe Market. Music will be provided by Dave Collins and the Emory & Henry Brass Quintet.
For more information, call contact Deb Kerr email@example.com 276-628-5005 ext. 111
• A variety of affordable, one-of-a-kind gifts created by local and regional artists will be up for grabs at the Rogersville Arts Council’s inaugural Handmade Gifts and Toys Show, to be held from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., Nov. 9 at the Rogersville Playhouse, 1924 E. Main St.
Admission is free.
Shoppers will find everything from hypertufa planters to decorative walking canes, craft aprons, crochet wearables and dolls, beaded jewelry, soy candles, bags and accessories made from repurposed materials and old-fashioned carved toys from Toyables, including acrobats, whimmy diddles, marionette puppets and more.
Writers from the Authors’ Guild of Tennessee will also be represented.
For a fee, gift wrapping and workshops — including making paraffin ice candles — will be available.
For more information, call 293-0882 and leave a message with your contact information or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
• Vendors will fill the arena, floor, stage and mezzanine area of Viking Hall Civic Center in Bristol at the 2013 Country Christmas Craft and Gift Show.
Hours are 9 a.m. to 6 p.m., Nov. 29 and 30, and noon to 5 p.m., Dec. 1.
Admission is $5 per person; children get in free. Discounts are available for groups of 10 or more.
This year, several local authors — including Joe Tennis, Bud Phillips, George Stone and Tim Rouse — will be on site to sign copies of their books.
Outside, shoppers can pick up a bag of freshly popped kettle corn; inside, they’ll find homemade fudge, pretzels and candy as well as jellies, jams, hot sauces, gourmet grape juice and hard-to-find spice mixes.
In addition to live holiday music and door prizes, the event will offer plenty to keep children entertained, too, from face painting to ornament making.
For more information, visit www.countrychristmasshow.com.