uac102710001.gif There are several fun events that folks in the community look forward to every year, and one of them is just around the corner — the Holly Day Fair.

For the past 43 years, the Junior League of Fayetteville has put on a one stop shopping event that hosts more than 160 vendors who bring the latest and greatest in trends, gadgets, gift ideas and goodies to the community.

This year, the Holly Day Fair runs Nov. 4-7, and the organizers have quite a treat planned for the eager holiday shoppers that fl ock to this event annually.

“It really is the latest and greatest for the holiday season,” said Jami McLaughlin, Holly Day Fair publicity chair. “We have vendors come from all over to set up, the Crown Expo Center is packed.”

Whether you are looking for holiday decorations, handmade crafts, stylish jewelry and clothes, children’s toys, specialty food items or the perfect hard-to-fi nd gift for that special someone, it is a given that you will find wonderful treasures at the Holly Day Fair.

“You can get lost spending an entire day going booth to booth and looking at all the different shops and vendors that are set up,” said McLaughlin. Not to mention food — there is a food court with a lot of food options. “We do homemade bake sales and we also sell Dewey’s, which is a customer favorite. They sell the sugar cakes and Moravian cookies.”

Laura Mulkey, Holly Day Fair chair is excited about the goodies that the vendors are bringing to town. There will be plenty of local favorites, but look for the out-of-town vendors, too. They’ve got everything from knives to Christmas ornaments.

“Some old booths that we are excited to have back are Helmuts Strudel,” said Mulkey. “We also have So Chic Bebe from downtown. Shea’s Wildfl ower which has a lot of decorations will be there, and TBIT Gifts. They have any Christmas ornament you could ever want ranging from a diet coke can to a piece of pizza!”

If all that shopping proves to be too exhausting, Mulkey recommends looking for the Cape Fear Aesthetics booth. They are a title sponsor of the event and will be providing services and selling products at the event.

“We are really excited about Cape Fear Aesthetics having a big booth,” said Mulkey. “If you get tired from all your shopping you can have a mani or pedi right there at the fair.”

As if providing an awesome shopping experience full of fun, creativity and the Christmas spirit weren’t enough, the Junior League of Fayetteville then takes the funds that are raised at this event and uses it to support their mission of “promoting volunteerism, developing the potential of women, and improving the community through the effective action and leadership of trained volunteers. Its purpose is exclusively educational and charitable. The Junior League of Fayetteville, Inc. reaches out to women of all races, religions, and national origins who demonstrate an interest in and a commitment to voluntarism.”

Specifically, they commit their programs, projects, and advocacy to ensuring children ages birth to 18 have the opportunity10-27-10-holly_day_fair_logo.gif and services essential to their physical, intellectual, emotional and social well being.

“This is our number one fundraiser for the Junior League of Fayetteville,” said McLaughlin. “Last year we brought in more than $270,000 for the community and that goes to supporting our mission.”

So, loosen those purse strings, break out the shopping list (remember to treat yourself, too), and prepare yourself for a day of retail therapy that will not only benefi t you, but will also improve the lives of the most vulnerable among us.

“I think it it says something when you have thousands of people come in just in the fi rst few hours,” said McLaughlin. “This is something that Fayetteville really looks forward to — people know that when they come to the Holly Day Fair they are not only getting the best with gifts but they are also giving back to the community. It is the biggest holiday gift and craft show in NC, but it is also a fundraiser for our community and that is the best part.”

Super Shopper hours are from 9 a.m. - 12 p.m. on Nov. 4 with an admission price of $12. No strollers please.

Regular shopping opens at noon and runs through 8 p.m. Admission is $9. Friday, Nov. 5 hours are 9 a.m. - 9 p.m. Saturday Nov. 6, the Holly Day Fair opens at 9 a.m. and closes at 8 p.m. Sunday, shoppers are welcome from 12-5 p.m. Regular admission is $9 and includes parking. Children fi ve and younger are free. The event is held at the Crown Expo Center. Visit www.jlfay.org for more information.

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