Bonne Terre is gearing up for a huge Christmas Market to celebrate Small Business Saturday this weekend, organized by Friends for a Better Bonne Terre.
Food trucks, food and drink stands, vendor booths, music, entertainment, lots of activities for shoppers and kids, and photo opportunities with Christmas characters will await the families who attend.
The event is spread along East School Street, with activities and vendors concentrated in the areas of Bicentennial Park in front of the post office, Heritage Hall, and in the reawakened, downtown shopping district.
City Administrator Shawn Kay is part of Friends for a Better Bonne Terre, and recently told the city council he was looking forward to seeing a good turnout.
“It’s part of our efforts to bring people in town to support Shop Small Saturday. And at this point, I think we have about 30 vendors that are going to be here to be involved in that,” he said. “So it's looking pretty promising and I'm excited to see how that goes.”
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Food, drinks – such as mulled cider and wine, activities for kids and adults, and lots and lots of shopping will be the order of the day. A map of the Christmas Market shows 20 locations of merriment on the Friends for a Better Bonne Terre Facebook page.
One of the activities is a scavenger hunt. People can get an “autograph book” from the North County School Lunch Program table, get it filled out, and return the filled book to the table for a special prize.
Children are invited to get a picture with the Christmas characters along the scavenger route, and enjoy a bonfire and S’mores courtesy of the Big River/Bonne Terre Fire Department later that evening.
Kids are also encouraged to play any number of “Reindeer Games” in the afternoon. The games include Elf Olympics at noon; Snowflake Making at 1 p.m.; Fruitcake Walk at 2 p.m.; Christmas Tree Race at 3 p.m.; Ornament Crafting at 4 p.m.; Elf Olympics Part 2 at 5 p.m.; and Musical Chairs at 6 p.m.
About 6 p.m., the city’s Christmas tree in Bicentennial Park will have its lights turned on, to burn brightly through the holiday season.
At least 10 vendors will be located on East School Street near Heritage hall and open from noon – 6 p.m.: Marge Wegleitner will have Christmas crafts for sale; Small Town Boutique will offer women's and children's apparel; Casey's Peanut Brittle will sell all sorts of nut brittles, including reduced-sugar peanut brittle; Wreaths by Renee and MaeLynn Bead Co. will offer handmade Christmas wreaths and beaded gifts; Juice Plus will be offering plant-based whole-food products; Fancy Crow will offer tasting samples, mulled wine, wreaths, ornaments and decor; Fyre Lake Winery and Event Center LLC of Cadet will have wines to taste; Concessionaire Extraordinaire will offer pulled pork, turkey legs, ribbon fries, french fries, fried bar foods and loaded nachos; Belle on Wheels LLC will have slider sandwiches, tacos, loaded waffle fries, fried bar foods and loaded nachos; and North County Band Boosters will have a bake sale and hot chocolate bar.
Inside Heritage Hall, shoppers can find, from noon-6 p.m.: Usborne Books' children's books; Donna Compton's doll outfits, crocheted crafts, jewelry, homemade apple butter and baked goods; Leslie Thomas's homemade jewelry and resin items; In Dios Inspirations' hand-drawn, authentic Native American and Meso-American designs; Color Street Nails' nail strips; Madi Mae's homemade baked goods; Kim Tucker's tumblers and pens; Sebring Jewelry by Design; Gabby J's Boutique's women's apparel; Natt Elements LLC's natural handcrafted skincare products; The Crazy Stitch's crochet animals and hats, Tonya Walker's book folding book art; Laura Beth's Boutique's wreaths, gravesite arrangements, Christmas tree bows and centerpieces; Eclectic Creations by Tracy's Christmas decor; Amy Lively's shower melts, body scrubs, Bluetooth speaker tumblers, sippy cups, sweatshirts and T-shirts; Brenda's Raggedy Edges' handmade garland and earrings; Coco Confectionery's hot chocolate bombs; and North County Project Graduation's Thee Abbey cinnamon rolls, make-and-take ornaments and more.
Desloge Chamber's Small Business Bingo
Just in time for Christmas, people will have a chance to win big at the Desloge Chamber’s Shop Small Business Bingo on Small Business Saturday. Starting at 8 a.m. on Saturday, participants can visit multiple small businesses and eateries in Bonne Terre, Desloge, Park Hills, and Farmington.
This is the third year for the Shop Small Business Bingo, which encourages community members to support small businesses on Small Business Saturday. This year, the Desloge Chamber is partnering up with Lou Lou’s Cakes, with The Giving Tree as this year’s sponsor.
“This is our third annual business Bingo event, and it keeps growing each year,” said Chamber Director Cheri Henderson. “The intent behind it is to give businesses a shout out, and a Bingo card makes it fun for the community to go from business to business.”
Henderson said no purchases are required, but the goal is to get people into as many local storefronts as possible to see what is going on in the community.
The Bingo cards are available on the Chamber’s Facebook page starting Monday, or can be picked up at any of the participating businesses the day of. This year there are multiple pop-up vendors inside of the Lincoln Street Event Center, and some businesses have invited pop-up vendors to set up in store or in the parking lot.
There are multiple ways to possibly win money this year. To potentially win $25, the person must have visited any five stores on the Bingo card. To possibly win $50, there must be five in a row for a completed Bingo, which can be done diagonally, horizontally, or vertically. To be eligible to win $100, all spaces must be filled on the Bingo card.
New this year is the “bonus win.” In order to be considered for the bonus win, all pop-up vendors located inside of the Lincoln Street Event Center must have initialed next to the name of the business. There must also be at least one Bingo on the card to be eligible for the bonus.
Businesses participating in the event include Carrie’s Place, Little Caesar’s, General Custard’s Re-Treat, Kae & Co. Boutique, Good Vibes Nutrition, Lou Lou’s Cakes, Krekeler Jewelers, Queen Anne’s Lace Boutique, Earth Mother Health Foods, Greene’s Florist, Ultimate Tans, The Giving Tree and Apple Blossom, Rae Cole’s Coffee Bar, T’s Antiques and Treasures, Cricket, Verizon, Slauterhouse, Imo’s Pizza, Urban Farmgirl Boutique, Parkland Health Mart, Hub’s Pub, The Fancy Crow, A & A Resale, and The Lincoln Street Event Center.
Inside of the Lincoln Street Event Center there will be a variety of pop-up vendors, including Nail’D It with Danica, Lucky Ducky Bowtique, The Speckled Loaf Artesian Bread Company, Hectic Mom Shop, Flirty Erk’N, Llama Mia, Tupperware by Kelly Kelley, Rosemary’s Crafts, Light up your World, Cavie’s Designs, Scents by Crystal, and Cindy’s Corner LLC.
There will also be food vendors on Lincoln Street for people to enjoy, including Roxy’s Hot Grill and Nana and Papa’s Kettle Corn.
There are three ways to turn in the Bingo card this year. The card can be slipped through a slot in the Desloge Chamber’s door, located at 204 North Lincoln Street in Desloge, a picture of the card can be emailed to Director@DeslogeChamber.com, or a picture can be sent via text to 573-431-3006. The deadline to turn in the card is Nov. 29 at 10 a.m. Name and phone number must be at the top of the Bingo card.
Farmington Chamber's Scavenger Hunt
The Farmington Regional Chamber of Commerce is hosting a “Shop Small Saturday Scavenger Hunt” on Saturday to promote local shopping for the Holiday season.
To enter, customers must download the Eat, Shop, Play in the Parkland App into a smartphone. Users must visit 11 or more of the more than 20 businesses listed in the app or the chamber’s website and scan the QR Code displayed at the business to win.
The winner of the contest receives a prize package valued at $500 and will be announced live at noon Dec. 5 on the Farmington Regional Chamber Facebook page.
To download the app, go to www.farmingtonregionalchamber.com
Fredericktown Small Business Saturday
Starting at 10 a.m., Saturday shopping will begin with many of the local shops offering special deals just for the day.
There will be pop-up shops along the main streets and court square. Currently, 15 pop-up shops are scheduled to participate.
Similar to last year, the Madison County Chamber of Commerce will have a drawing for a prize at the end of the shopping day. This year, brochures with information can be picked up at any chamber member store.
There will be 12 "visit-to-win" stores. These are businesses which are members of the Madison County Chamber of Commerce. If you visit them all, you will be entered into a drawing for a $100 gift card.
"We will have the 'visit-to-win' stores again and once you get all of them initialed on your brochure, you can return them to any of the MCCC member stores," MCCC event chair Tessa Rehkop said. "This is our way of highlighting those businesses that are members of the chamber."
Member stores include Artesian Springs Soap Company, Chuck's Short Stop, Country Lane Florist, Cowbell Cafe, Georgie Kay's Boutique, Madison Medical Center Gift Shop, Silvermines Quilts & Antiques, Thal's Hardware, The Crazy Wildflower, The Pig BBQ, Thrive & Shine, and Tis the Season.
Rehkop said there are too many deals to list them all, but almost every storefront will be offering deals, giveaways and prize drawings.
"There will be lots of fun, festive things to enjoy from the stores besides just shopping," Rehkop said. "Thal's Hardware will be serving hot cocoa and cookies. The Crazy Wildflower is turning into The Grinchy Wildflower for the day and will be visited by a live Grinch and Cindy Lou Who, as well as food trucks and hair feathers.
"Georgie Kay's always has a fun photo op. This year the Optimist Club will be selling Krispy Kreme doughnuts as a fundraiser and Santa will be available for pictures at the Madison Medical Center Gift Shop for a donation to the MMC Auxiliary."
Rehkop said it is really important to support local shops because most of that money will go right back into the community.
"Small Business Saturday is important in small communities like Fredericktown," Rehkop said. "This is a day to remind people to support the local businesses."
Rehkop said not only does Small Business Saturday help the local owners, but 67 cents of every dollar spent locally stays in the community, so it helps everyone. This amount is through sales tax, but most importantly, by supporting your neighbors and fellow community members.
"This event means so much to the Madison County Chamber of Commerce," Rehkop said. "We'd like to thank all the shoppers and business owners that make this day so fun and festive."
There are many shops, including pop-up shops, opening up for the day or setting up in the square with more signing up to join the fun daily. To stay informed on deals being offered, visit the Madison County Chamber of Commerce Facebook page and join the Small Business Saturday-Madison County, Mo event page.