On Friday, artists from all over Mississippi will help a few Starkville families have affordable, warm houses for the new year.
The artisans at the Christmas Handworks Bazaar will have high quality, “Made in Mississippi” gifts and holiday decorations, with all proceeds benefiting Starkville’s Habitat for Humanity.
First United Methodist Church will be sponsoring the fifth annual Christmas Handworks Bazaar on Nov. 5 from 9 a.m. until 4 p.m. in the church’s Christian Life Center. The event is open to the public.
“We call ourselves a ‘handworks’ bazaar, so that people will know what to expect when they come shopping with us,” said Pam Hunt, chairperson of the Bazaar.
“They will find quality, one of a kind, ‘made in Mississippi’ articles and some of the nicest vendors anywhere.”
This year, 36 vendors from Starkville and throughout North Mississippi will be offering unique items ranging from pottery to tutus for children. Other products will include yard art, watercolor paintings, jewelry, children’s clothing, books, and more.
Musical entertainment will be provided by the 3 and 4 year old classes from the church weekday ministries. Other entertainment will be provided by First UMC’s Men for the Master group and the Christmas Singers.
About 500 people visited the Bazaar last year, and even more visitors are expected this year.
One new feature at this year’s event will be the Sweet Spirit Sandwich Shoppe, providing visitors the opportunity to purchase muffins, coffee and other treats during the day with chicken salad and chicken salad sandwiches being sold at lunch time.
Church member volunteers have also made frozen chicken and vegetable casseroles and cakes/pies to sale.
Hunt said about 100 church members have volunteered their time and efforts to make this event a special way to begin the Christmas season and provide the community a great opportunity to show their support of the local Habitat.
As part of the event, visitors will be able to view an exhibit from the local Habitat of Humanity and visit with members of partner families.
According to Allan Tucker, a First UMC member and a board member of Starkville’s Habitat for Humanity, the organization provides decent affordable housing for people in need who have not been able previously to afford a home.
“With a Habitat house, the families are providing a better home environment for their children,”Tucker said. “The community as a whole also benefits from the construction of a Habitat house.”
First UMC has been a long-time supporter of Habitat for Humanity through its local missions program.
Over the years, church members have not only helped the organization financially, but through the building of houses, serving on the board and feeding college student workers during Spring Break builds.
The Rev. Dr. Danny Rowland, senior paster of First UMC said this is a year-round passion for many church members.
“I appreciate their passion and compassion,” Rowland said. “A lot of times, people think you have to go somewhere else to do great mission work, but great mission work is being done right here through Habitat.”
For more information about the Christmas Handworks Bazaar, contact Hunt at firstname.lastname@example.org .
For more information about Starkville’s Habitat for Humanity, contact them at 324-7008 or go to the website at http://www.starkvillehabitat.com .