The changing seasons bring cooler days, longer nights and anticipation of upcoming celebrations — holiday celebrations and family gatherings.
For parishes across the Archdiocese of Anchorage plans are being made for craft fairs, carnivals and other opportunities to do a little early Christmas shopping, mingle with parishioners and neighbors in a festive atmosphere, and support local craftspeople and artisans. These churches count on income generated from such events to fund outreaches, building improvements, Catholic schooling and other activities. For the vendors who ply their wares — many of whom are parishioners — a little extra income is welcome as the holidays approach.
From early October until Christmas, there are opportunities in several parishes to find unique items, sample various cuisines and support the necessary work that is partly funded by these events.
Many of the venues offer space and tables to outside vendors for a nominal fee or for a percentage of the proceeds. For more information, contact the persons listed below.
OUR LADY OF THE ANGELS
The Kenai parish, located at 225 S. Spruce Street, hosts its fifth annual craft bazaar on Friday and Saturday, Oct. 6-7, from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., both days. Items featured are up-cycled sweaters, skirts and mittens, as well as wall hangings and a variety of handmade and other goods. Proceeds will help the church purchase a new furnace. For more information, contact Lori Seymour at (907) 283-3315
OUR LADY OF PERPETUAL HELP
The Soldotna parish’s Fireweed Fellowship Hall, at 225 Redoubt Ave., will house the church’s premiere two-day fundraising event. It begins on Friday, Oct. 13, with its popular quilt bingo at 5:30 p.m., followed by 20 different games at 6:30 p.m. Food will be available. Saturday, Oct. 14, at 6:30 p.m. is the dinner/auction. The community Halloween carnival will take place on Friday, Oct. 27, from 5 p.m. to 9 p.m. and Saturday, Oct. 28 from 1 p.m. to 4 p.m. in the Redemptorist Hall. On Tuesday, Halloween evening, O’Neill Hall will be open from 5 p.m. to 8 p.m. with hot dogs and hot drinks available. For more information, contact Marlys Verba at (907) 262-4749.
OUR LADY OF GUADALUPE CO-CATHEDRAL
Located at 3900 Wisconsin Ave. in Anchorage, the co-cathedral holds its annual parish bazaar on Saturday, Oct. 14, from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. in the Lunney Center, next to the church. Vendors will offer handmade items, jewelry, collectibles and antiques. Fresh baked rolls will be available for breakfast, and lunch also will be offered. A customary White Elephant sale featuring Christmas items will be held. Vendor tables are available for $30 each. For more information, contact John Fleming at (907) 230-7783.
ST. NICHOLAS OF MYRA
The Byzantine Catholic Church, located at 2200 Arctic Blvd. in Anchorage, features a Slavic lunch at its annual bazaar on Saturday, Oct. 14 from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Traditional Polish and Russian ethnic desserts, including nut rolls, will be sold. Fifteen vendors will offer unique, handmade Alaskan crafts and Christmas items in an intimate setting, which will also feature a basket raffle. A church tour will be available as well. For more information, contact Judy Bich at (907) 333-4183.
ST. ELIZABETH ANN SETON
Located at 2901 Huffman Road in Anchorage, the church’s annual bazaar and bake sale, which supports the parish school, will take place on Saturday, Oct. 21, from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. It features many items hand crafted by the ladies of the Magi Craft Group. Banners, ornaments, jewelry, hats, scarves, kitchen items, T-shirts, children’s items and many home decor and holiday gift items are available from 80 vendors. Freshly baked cinnamon rolls, chili and hotdogs will be served. For more information, contact May Ann Gilgallon (206) 883-6767.
The Talkeetna parish will hold its annual bazaar in the Sheldon Community Arts Hanger at 2229 S. “D” Street (one block off Main Street) on Saturday, Nov. 4, from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Proceeds will benefit Talkeeta’s Food Pantry, Covenant House, Brother Francis Shelter and Charlie Elder House/Macaulay Manor. Local crafts, beads, jewelry, ivory, pottery, paintings, photography, fabric art and other unique items are featured. A silent auction, bake sale and a Christmas basket door prize add to the fun. Baked goods and lunch will be available for purchase. Tables and vendor space are available for $30, paid in advance. The parish will also have a “Bean-a-Fit” with all proceeds from the soup supper sent to Bean’s Café. This year it will be held at Swiss Alaska Inn on “F” Street in Talkeetna on Oct. 14 from 4 p.m. to 7 p.m. For more information, contact D.D. at (907) 733-1212, or Suzy at (907) 733-2300.
HOLY FAMILY CATHEDRAL
This historic downtown Anchorage parish, located at 800 W. 5th Ave., features something for everyone at its annual bazaar on Saturday, Nov. 4, from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Handmade and other items for kids and adults are available. Hot breads, coffee and breakfast and a hearty lunch, will be served throughout the day. The Women of Holy Family host this annual event to raise money for funerals and other receptions. Vendor tables are available for 10 percent of the proceeds. For more information, contact Stephanie at (907) 885-9952.
Located at 825 S. Klevin Street, this long-standing Anchorage parish will hold its annual holiday bazaar on Saturday, Nov. 11, from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. More than 40 vendors will be selling a variety of items, including Alaska Native arts and crafts, clothing and apparel items. Handcrafted items from holiday table runners to crocheted and knitted items, as well as collectibles and curiosities are featured. Lunch will be provided. The bazaar is a fundraising event, which will be preceded by the Knights of Columbus annual spaghetti feed and live auction on Saturday, Oct. 28, at 6:30 p.m., and a youth sponsored Halloween Carnival on Tuesday, Oct. 31, from 6:30 p.m. to 8 p.m. For more information, contact Mary Snowball at (907) 337-5370.
Wasilla’s parish, located at 1201 E. Bogard Road, will hold its annual bazaar before and after the weekend Masses, Nov. 11-12. St. Jude’s Guild sponsors this church fundraiser and will feature handmade items and other goods. For more information, contact Dorie Smith at (907) 376-4081.
ST. MARY’S SCHOOL
The Kodiak elementary school will feature its annual “Cookies By the Pound” fundraiser. Approximately 60 families donate six dozen homemade cookies, which are then sold by the pound. Many varieties will be available. The date for this event has not yet been set, as organizers discovered most of the cookies were consumed long before Christmas, so a date closer to the holiday is being considered. For more information, contact the school at (907) 486-3513.
Located at 425 Fireweed Lane in Palmer, the parish has not yet finalized plans to host its annual craft fair. At press date, no time or other information was available, and the actual event is tentative. Please contact the parish at (907) 745-3229 to determine if the event will take place.