BRISTOL – In lieu of their traditional Christmas Fair, the Bristol Historical Society will be offering a European-style outdoor Christmas market on Dec. 11, featuring a variety of gift baskets and other items for people’s Christmas shopping.
The market will be held from 3 to 6 p.m., with a snow date of Dec. 6 at the same time, outside in the small front parking lot of the Bristol Historical Society at 98 Summer St. There, a large, 20x30 feet lighted tent will be set up. Visitors will be required to wear masks and maintain social distancing as they are let in a few at a time to browse items on tables. Items will be $1 and up. Cash or checks will be accepted, but credit/debit cards will not.
Bob Adamczyk, who is organizing this year’s fair, added that the trio of volunteers known as BBK, Bob Alim, Bob Boudreau and Kevin Prior, will also have hot chocolate available.
“We wanted to keep the tradition of Mary Houle’s Christmas Fair alive,” said Adamczyk. “This will be the 14th year that we will be holding it at the Bristol Historical Society. But, since we can’t do it indoors like we have in the past, I had the idea of doing something like a European-style outdoor Christmas market.”
Houle said she is happy that the Bristol Historical Society will be able to have a fair after all this year.
Adamczyk said that the Bristol Historical Society received a large amount of donated items to put together a variety of gift baskets for the market.
“We have baskets filled with crafts, coffee and tea baskets, baking baskets, food baskets, baskets for men, baskets for women, children’s baskets, baskets for dog and cat owners and ‘comfort baskets’ with wine,” he said. “We also have baskets with puzzles and games to help get people through the winter. There’s a big variety.”
Ellie Wilson, program chair with the Bristol Historical Society, added that who purchase a gift basket will receive a Bristol Historical Society carry-bag. The market will also have items such as White Elephant ornaments, boxes of candy and Hallmark promotional decorations which play Christmas music. There will even be a couple of “gag gifts” such as “a jar of nothing” for those who said they don’t want a gift this year and a roll of toilet paper with an amusing poem on it.
Tom Dickau, past president of the Bristol Historical Society, added that the Bristol Historical Society will also have its remaining Bristol Hospital ornaments, which celebrate the 100th anniversary of the hospital, available for purchase.
There will also be a free raffle basket which people can win. They just have to provide their name, phone number and address on a ticket. The Bristol Historical Society will then draw a winner from a hat and call the person to either come and pick up their prize or have it brought to their home.
Adamczyk said that the Bristol Historical Society has been preparing for this event since their first meeting in October. He thanked Carol Atwood from The Artificial Flower Shop and Christine Ward for helping to wrap the items.
“This is an easy way to buy your Christmas gifts this year,” said Tom Dickau. “There’s quite a diverse array of items.”
Wilson added that the event was also a way of showing that, despite the challenges of covid-19, the Bristol Historical Society is still active and participating in the community.
The snow date for this event is Dec. 12.
Brian M. Johnson can be reached at 860-973-1806 or email@example.com.