Friday, December 5, 2008

Chelsea Hometown Holidays ... and more!

Many people have already bought and wrapped their presents, hung their stockings with care, and are fully into the holiday spirit. Me, I tend to be the one who is desperately checking local stores to see how late they are open on Christmas Eve because I'm just not quite done.....

This is one of the many reasons why I love Chelsea's annual Hometown Holidays celebration, which is going on this weekend. It is a big celebratory announcement with lights and bells (literally) that gets me fully into the holiday spirit in the first week of December. A full 2 weeks before I'd do so otherwise.

Tonight is the official tree lighting at Pierce Park, a visit from Santa at the Chelsea Depot, free concert, cookie decorating and much more. Saturday and Sunday are full of so many activities and events that I can't list them all here. Check out the full itinerary on the Chelsea Festivals Hometown Holidays website. Here are a couple suggestions for those who love art and hand-made gifts:

  • TWO Holiday Art Shows - (1) All the Trimmings Art Show is held at the Fairgrounds and (2) Darwin's Glass Studio Open House is at the Depot - both from 10 til 4 on Saturday. If you are looking for unique gifts, check out the work from some of our highly talented and creative people in our area.
  • Make your own gifts - If you or the kids like to give handcrafted gifts to loved ones, visit the Chelsea Center for the Arts from 1-4 on Saturday. All the supplies and work space will be provided, and you can make and take creative gifts or decorations for $5 each.
This is a great time to either get started or finish up with the your holiday shopping, too. Just about all of our local merchants are in the holiday spirit, offering excellent sales and many are having events, music and activities, too. These are all outlined on the Hometown Holidays website. Off the top of my head, here are some suggestions:
  • The Garden Mill - for your fresh holiday greenery, in addition to the fun and high quality gifts.
  • Pierce's Pastries - order your baked goods for the next holiday party and it saves you from having to do "one more thing" in an already busy week. Or stop by and relax!
  • The Chelsea Market - holiday gift baskets with your choice of items. I sent an all Michigan basket to the in-laws last year and it was a huge hit.
Check out more local stores by searching for in the Chelsea Directory - Retail / Shopping category. Also visit our Shop Local page for WHY shopping local is a better deal than shopping big box stores.

Shop Local AND Online
But if you're too cold or tired to leave the comfort of your own home this weekend, you can shop local AND online at:
  • Vogels and Fosters - Great gifts both big and small, including everything from suede coats to mittens to funky umbrellas. They are having some great sales, and will also gift wrap and ship for you. If you forgot what customer service is *supposed* to be like, visit V&F.
  • Cranesbill Books and Toys - Offering 25% off ALL inventory through the end of the year. Visit the store for some fun shopping, or shop online. One great thing about shopping local is that if you don't see something you want on line, just call the store and they can help you out that way.
More suggestions? Where are you favorite places to shop for the holidays?

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