Support local businesses by shopping at these 11 Christmas craft markets

The Ponce City Market will host the Village Retail Holiday Markets, a special event featuring products made by Black creators. (Courtesy of Jamestown

With Christmas figuratively around the corner, now is the time to double check your list and shop for a variety of arts, crafts, jewellery, ceramics, handmade metalwork and more from local merchants at special markets. throughout Metro Atlanta.

Hyperlocal events such as Christmas art and creative markets are an integral part of community retailers during the holiday season, often offering unique wares and stimulating the local economy. “It is very important to bring awareness to local producers and brands that encourage both the community and retailers to dedicate e-dollars [support] at the venue [businesses]”, says Dr. Lakeysha Hallmon, CEO and founder of The Village Retail at Ponce City Market. “When local artisans are put front and center, we establish a shared ecosystem.”

In addition to shopping, these festive and seasonal markets are family-friendly and offer activities like photos with Santa, opportunities to make holiday greeting cards, and indulge in tasty food and drink. Consider these special markets another way to celebrate Christmas with the people you love, an opportunity to start a new family tradition, and time to get to know local entrepreneurs. “These events are a fun environment to introduce and showcase artists and their work. They are also a platform for attendees and performers to interact, learn, and earn mutual respect while celebrating the unique venue where the event is held,” says Randall Fox, founder of the Atlanta Foundation For Public Spaces and organizer of the Marketplace of inaugural holidays this year at Parco del Piemonte.

The following 11 holiday markets can help kick off your arts and crafts shopping season. (Unless otherwise noted, admission to the markets is free.) While shopping for others, be sure to treat yourself to something nice and special as well.

For two days, the Parco del Piemonte will be transformed into a Christmas gift market with artists selling their creative works. (Courtesy of Atlanta Foundation For Public Spaces)

German holiday market. Wind through the party Christkindl German Market and shop for ornaments at Kaethe Wohlfahrt, one of Germany’s most popular Christmas ornament shops, as well as wooden toys, jewelry, clay and hardwood pipes, handicrafts, bath and body items, and more. For those who work up an appetite while shopping, opt for favorites like German Glühwein, also known as mulled wine, and traditional staples like pretzels, schnitzels, and bratwurst. Hours vary. Nov. 25-Dec. 24. 290 East Paces Ferry Road NE, Atlanta. christkindlmarket.org.

Black-owned businesses. With a mission to support black-owned brands looking for a home for their product, the Village retail Holiday markets it will be a retail experience rooted in storytelling and upward mobility, intersecting cause, culture, shopping and community. To kick off the holiday season on Small Business Saturday, the store will host the makers of Black who will be offering clothing, accessories, candles, beauty products and more for everyone on your shopping list. 12:00-17:00 Nov. 26-27 and Dec. 4, 11 and 18. The Shed along the Eastside Trail of the Beltline and in The Trestle, the breeze that connects Ponce City Market to the Beltline. Ponce City Market, 675 Ponce de Leon Avenue. NE, Atlanta. 404-907-1918, thevillageretail.com.

New event. Thanksgiving weekend will welcome the grand opening Piedmontese holiday gift market, a two-day event. Event attendees will be able to stroll through the park as they browse the gift items of approximately 100 artists including painters, photographers, sculptors, glassblowers, leather and metalworkers, jewelers and artisans. The atmosphere will also be festive with live music and Christmas-themed hot drinks from select vendors. 10:00-17:00 Nov. 26 and 11-17 Nov. 27. Piedmont Park, 1215 Piedmont Ave. NE, Atlanta. affps.com.

One city, three events. Athens will host a variety of holiday markets. The first is the Southern Beer Holiday Market, a two-day event that will celebrate the season with merchandise from local artists and creatives as well as seasonal stouts to drink. The next event, two evenings, will be hosted in the courtyard of the Big city bread cafe and feature local artists and artisans offering handmade gifts and treasures. The third event will be the annual city festive market and craft fair at West Broad Farmers Market, made festive with handicrafts, children’s crafts, music, fresh produce and baked goods from local farmers. Southern Brewing Holiday Market event, Dec. 14-19, 3-4. 231 Collins Industrial Blvd., Athens. 706-548-7183, visit thensga.com. Big City Bread Cafe Event, Dec. 17-21, 8-9. 393 N. Finley St., Athens. 706-340-1973, www.visitathensga.com. West Broad Farmers Market Event, 11am-2pm December 10. 300 S. Rocksprings St., Athens. 706-765-4020, athenslandtrust.org.

Handmade gifts. A festive all-day artists’ market, aptly named the Independent craft experience, will feature more than 70 vendors offering Christmas crafts, art and vintage, handmade gifts and food. For added incentive to visit this unique community destination market, the first 100 people in line will receive a tote bag. The entry fee is $5 for everyone age 13 and up. 11am-5pm December 3. Lobby at Uptown, 575 Morosgo Drive NE, Atlanta. indiecraftexperience.com.

Craft fair. Complete your gift list for everyone who has been kind to Christmas craft fair, hosted by a TLC youth group from the Timothy Lutheran Church. Visitors will find a bevy of beautiful crafts, arts and more. 9am-2pm Dec 3. 556 Arnold Mill Road, Woodstock. 770 928-2812, timothylutheran.360unite.com.

Farm fun. Participants in the Third annual Winter Outdoor Market, held at the Still Family Farm, you’ll find an assortment of holiday gifts and can snap pictures with Santa, create greeting cards with a backdrop of Christmas-themed arrangements, and warm up with treats like hot cocoa and cookies. 10am-4pm Dec 4. 5682 Macland Road, Powder Springs. 678-283-6951, stillfamilyfarm.com.

Santa Claus in town. Shop for holiday gifts for everyone on your list at Alpharetta Christmas Market. In addition to a variety of crafts, food, decorations and jewelry, visitors will be able to take pictures with Santa Claus. The event will run from 9am to 4pm December 10; photos with Santa Claus, 10:00-12:00. Alpharetta Community Center, 175 Roswell St., Alpharetta. 678-297-6100, awesomealpharetta.com.

Keep it local. Swing from Shopping feast at the Artists and Flea Holiday Market for a special event filled with holiday items, activities, and tasty treats. Local merchants will offer everything from home goods and accessories to clothing, personal skin care products and more. 11am-6pm December 17. Ponce City Market, 675 Ponce de Leon Avenue. NE, Atlanta. 404-900-7900, artists and fleas.com.

A large number of vendors will offer holiday crafts, vintage items and more at the Indie Craft Experience at the Atrium at Uptown.

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