Get a jump on holiday gifts
at this weekend’s shows
As the holiday season approaches, country fairs showcasing handmade work are evolving into gift markets. And that’s the case this weekend, with the exception of New Echota Heritage Day, which celebrates Cherokee culture, and WTCI’s annual Family Day.
New Echota is a heritage festival that is fun, as well as educational, for children who may have never seen demonstrations in the dying arts of weaving, making blowguns or spinning wool. Visitors will see a newspaper printed both in Cherokee and English, a Cherokee homestead, a smokehouse and they can hear storyteller Sonny Ledford.
The works of bowl carver Bill Radford, moccasin maker Sharlene Brooks, herbalist Cindy Quay and basket weaver Dan Gilliland Bright will be displayed. Cindy Steel Tucker will demonstrate old- style knitting; Bear Brooks making bows and blowguns.
It’s a day-trip back into the 19th century.
› Head up I-24 to catch Nashville’s big Christmas Village and the Foothills Christmas Arts and Crafts Festival in Manchester, Tenn., on the way.
Christmas Village has more than 200 vendors with handmade wares and manufactured gift items for sale. They’re spread out through six buildings at the old Tennessee Fairgrounds site, so wear comfortable shoes because it’s a lot of walking.
› The annual Gingerbread Shoppe opens in Christ United Methodist Church on Friday and Saturday. This show of handmade work is one year shy of its 30th anniversary since its founding by three East Brainerd homemakers.
Organizer Red Dueker says there will be more than 30 crafters on-site along with a sale of baked goods and a chili dinner.
Contact Susan Pierce at spierce@ timesfreepress. com or 423-757-6284.
Vann Tavern at New Echota Historic Site in Calhoun, Ga., is one of the sites visitors will see at New Echota Heritage Day.