Early holiday shoppers expected at Mistletoe Mart CENTRAL -- Union Mills * Westminster * Sandymount * Finksburg

November 12, 1992|By Cindy Parr | Cindy Parr,Contributing Writer

The 19th annual Mistletoe Mart, a seasonal display of arts and crafts for early Christmas shoppers, opens today at the Church of the Ascension in Westminster.

The Mistletoe Mart will be open from 10 a.m. to 9 p.m. today and tomorrow, and from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday.

Features include a country store, specialty shops and about 40 artists and crafts people from the surrounding area and as far away as Massachusetts, Michigan, Vermont and North Carolina.

Shoppers can choose among baskets, decorations, marble works, dried flower arrangements, quilts and German paper-cutting arts.

"This is a well-organized craft show that has a reputation," said Roberta Marye, the publicity coordinator for this year's event. "Our committee works hard all year long, and we go to a lot of trouble to make this event a success. There is a lot of care that goes into this show."

The Mistletoe Mart has indeed been successful, averaging some 7,000 visitors each year.

Those who attend shop in a joyful atmosphere appropriate to the season about to be celebrated.

"We decorate the church and turn it into a holiday shopping area," said Mrs. Marye. "Red-colored cloths are put on each table and Christmas music is played. We even have set up a parlor where spiced tea and delicate cookies are served. We do as much as we can to make people comfortable so they can enjoy themselves."

Peppermint Mill Farm owner Tone Sands has participated in the Mistletoe Mart for the past nine years.

The Gamber resident said she not only enjoys selling her dried fruits, nuts, coffees and gift baskets at the mart, but also likes the people who make the event so popular.

"The people that run the Mistletoe Mart and come to the Mistletoe Mart, and the vendors who work the Mistletoe Mart, get me into the holiday spirit," she said.

Leo and Cary Hastings, owners of Tannenhof Nursery in Hampstead, realized last year that the Mistletoe Mart provided the perfect environment for selling their holiday goods.

"We have a European-German gift shop where we sell nutcrackers, smokers and all types of Christmas tree decorations," said Mr. Hastings. "This will be our second year.

"Last year we had a great response. It was just a great place to be. We got a lot of advertisement from our visit there. We sold a lot of stock, and quite a few people came and bought at the shop."

After working up an appetite perusing the assortment of craft items, hungry shoppers can dine on food made right on the premises.

Soups, sandwiches, dinner platters and sweet treats will be highlights of the cafe operated by members of the Ascension Church.

Proceeds from the Mistletoe Mart will benefit a variety of charities in Carroll County.

Since its origin, the Mistletoe Mart has raised more than $57,000 for non-profit organizations such as the Shepherd's Staff, Timber Ridge and the Special Olympics.

"We try to be fair and support organizations that benefit a large part of the community," said Mrs. Marye.

Admission to the Mistletoe Mart is $2 for adults and $1 for children age 5 to 12. The one-time admission price is good for all three days. Information: 848-3251.

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