Santa Claus is coming to town, and artists and craftsmen from across the Southeast are tagging along.
Christmas Made in the South, the annual traveling arts and crafts show, will make a three-day stop beginning today at the Augusta-Richmond County Civic Center. Creators Bob and Janice Hunt said they started the show 22 years ago to give artists a place to sell their works in person.
"I was an artist, and I exhibited my work, and, really, it came out of a need for a true arts show where artists did not have to compete with imported arts and crafts," Mrs. Hunt said. "(People) really enjoy interacting with the artists and craftsmen, and one of our rules is that (they) are there. So that's a big plus for the audience."
The show begins its tour in Charlotte, N.C., and then travels to several other cities before making its Augusta stop. It ends in Charleston, S.C. "Augusta was the first city that we branched out to 16 years ago," Mrs. Hunt said. "It was a healthy, crafty place and still is. Over the years, we have branched out even more."
Mrs. Hunt said the show would feature a variety of crafts this year, including jewelry, handmade toys, clothing, fine art, candles, personalized ornaments, collectible Santas, painted glass and more.
"We have everything from a $5 Christmas ornament to a $2,000 watercolor," she said. "So there's something for everyone."
Trends on display will include animal and tropical motifs, anything Americana, glass-beaded jewelry (some featuring Swarovski Austrian crystal), botanical candles, soaps and oils and indoor and outdoor metal sculptures.
"(Some artists) blow their own glass beads," said Mrs. Hunt. "We try to blend the show so that no matter what you're looking for, you can find it."
Santa also will make an appearance at the show and will be available for pictures.
WHAT: 22nd Annual Christmas Made in the South
WHEN:10 a.m. to 8 p.m. today, 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Saturday and 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Sunday
WHERE: Augusta-Richmond County Civic Center, 601 Seventh St.
ADMISSION: $5 adults, free for ages 12 and younger, discounted tickets available at Fat Man's Forest and Chick-Fil-A locations and The Augusta Chronicle; call Carolina Shows, Inc., (704) 847-9480.
Reach Amy Connell at (706) 823-3220 or firstname.lastname@example.org.