LIMA — Nearly 80 vendors participated in the “Home Sweet Home Holiday Market” at the Allen County Fairgrounds.
The event began Saturday and continues on Sunday from 10 a.m. t0 4 p.m.
Admission is $5 for adults, free for those 12 and younger.
After many small businesses were affected by the COVID-19 pandemic, this event gives them an opportunity to get back out there.
“A lot of people, in general, are coming out but also vendors. Maybe they lost a lot of product when they couldn’t do shows and it’s too much for them to now start back up,” said Lisa Little, event organizer.
Deb Cluckey and her husband from North Baltimore, sell specialized fleece blankets that make great gifts for the holidays.
“We have three different sized blankets, large, medium and small for covering the whole family,” Cluckey said.
They’ve been doing various craft shows like this for around 10 years and admit they were affected when COVID hit.
“It canceled out a lot of our shows, but we have discovered that some are moving to fairgrounds for more space,” Cluckey said.
Dana Addis is Lima City Council Clerk and has, as a side business, “Marie’s Darling Designs” where she sells crocheted and knit boutique accessories for women.
This is her first time doing this show but she says she does a few every fall.
Addis said they’ve managed to keep in touch with their customers through social media during the pandemic.
“A lot of online advertising — Facebook, Instagram, Etsy Marketplace,” Addis said.
She says she appreciates being able to get out and meet customers.
“I feel good. It’s nice to see people’s faces,” Addis said.
Vicki Dunn, owner of Nutz 4 U out of Findlay has been coming to these shows since Little began organizing them four years ago.
The Dunns sell Cinnamon Roasted Nuts — almonds, pecans and cashews.
She says she’s not worried about COVID since she’s had it and was hospitalized with it. Her husband also had it.
“I’m just glad it’s over and I have my natural antibodies,” Dunn said.
She’s noticed that the shows that have come back are doing well.
“The shows that we did do were very well attended. We noticed that right away … but we found that the people that came were really anxious to be out. They wanted to be able to do things,” Dunn said.
Reach Sam Shriver at 567-242-0409.