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You are here: Community Arts Annual craft fair kicks off the holiday season

Annual craft fair kicks off the holiday season

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offers homemade crafts and goodies galore

The Rio West Mall, 1300 W. Maloney Ave., held its fourth Annual Holiday Craft Fair Nov. 17 with over 40 vendors present. Many homemade items and delicious goodies were up for sale to kick off the holiday season.

Talented crafters from the area were on hand in hopes of selling their unique talents, which ranged from from airbrushed T-shirts to zany dinosaur stuffed animals and beyond.

According to Rio West Mall Leasing and Marketing Director Hannah Madrid, the fair was a great way to get the community together and showcase local crafts.

“It went well this year with a sellout of great vendors,” she said. “Just a lot of variety of things like homemade wood crafts that is new this year. We of course have our usual vendors as well. We also have our second annual Native American Heritage Celebration sponsored by JC Penney — it’s just overall a great way to kick off the holiday season.”

One such first-time vendor was Dave Baker of “Baker Bowl Box Bench.” Baker, a carver, offers woodcraft instruction. With his talent, he turns wood into bowls, spoons and other kitchen utensil items.

Baker said his first year at the event was a success.

“I do bowl turning from local woods that I get with my permit when I gather firewood,” he said. “All my items I turn out are all made of wood — the spoons, ladles, everything. It was my first time here and it was a good vendor turnout and great customer turnout, too.”

Other items on display included wreaths, homemade soaps, small Christmas trees, decorative ornaments, aprons and of course, delicious candy crafts. From mouthwatering brownies to decorative cupcakes, the sweet tooth addict could find almost anything to satisfy their sugar fix.

Jessi Alred, also known as  “Candy Gal,” made homemade chocolates and different types of brittles. Having sold her sweets at the mall in the past, Alred said she knew people love her brittle.

“My candy has been moving and I make everything homemade,” she said. “The chocolate candy, the brittle is all good and people seem to enjoy them.”

Mall shoppers also got a chance to see other eye-pleasing items like Meredith Quam’s paintings on bottles. Quam, of the Pueblo of Zuni, is talented when it comes to painted glassware creations.

She said she got into painting while attending the University of New Mexico, she has been exploring the medium for the past seven years.

“I specialize in Native glassware and the designs represent my tribe, which is the Pueblo of Zuni,” she said. “I just decided to do it and now I really enjoy it and I also do beading and weaving.”

For more information on Rio West Mall events, find them on Facebook or visit: www.riowestmall.com

By Dee Velasco
For the Sun