Quality vendors spur continued festival growth

One of LaPorte County’s fastest growing events is set for Saturday, September 30 at the LaPorte County Fairgrounds at 2581 W. State Rd. 2. Come see for yourself.

It’s the 4th annual UMW Arts & Crafts Show that runs from 9:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. (CST) and features over 80 artists and crafters from Illinois, Indiana and Michigan. They will be showcasing their unique, one-of-a-kind, hand-crafted items.

Festival goers will be able to visit vendor booths located inside two large, temperature controlled buildings. Both are handicapped accessible and there is ample parking. There are no parking or entrance fees.

This event began modestly with 20 vendors hosted by the United Methodist Women (UMW) at the First United Methodist Church in LaPorte.

For the second year, the UMW decided to aim higher and asked Dee DeVincent, a church member and watercolor artist and vendor, to become the craft show chairperson and help organize their event.

That next year, the venue was moved to the Beacon Hills Banquet Hall in LaPorte and over 50 vendors signed on. This also brought out a much welcomed increase in visitors.

However, it was quickly realized the event had outgrown its new location so, once again, the LaPorte United Methodist Women were on the hunt for another location for their third year.

They settled on the LaPorte National Guard Armory, which was able to accommodate 65 vendors and an even bigger increase in visitors.

It became apparent this craft show had the potential to grow into an even larger community event, so for its fourth year, the UMW members are excited about having it at the LaPorte County Fairgrounds.

“This location offers the opportunity to make the fairgrounds a hub for arts and crafts activity in northern Indiana,” stated Dee DeVincent.

“It provides a safe environment to accommodate not only more vendors but also the increase in public visitors and parking.”

The UMW members are hopeful this new venue will turn their craft show into an annual event that visitors from LaPorte and surrounding communities and states can enjoy for many years to come.

This event promises to have something for everyone.

If you’re looking to spruce up your home décor check out the original artwork, photography, wooden and metal wall hangings, hand-crafted furniture, throw pillows, wreaths and floral arrangements, and glass sun catchers.

For the garden, visitors will find birdhouses and feeders, stepping stones, glass and ceramic ornamentation, metal creations, seasonal decorations, and plenty more that will make your yard a welcome sight.

Children will be delighted with the dolls and doll clothes, books, toys, stuffed animals, princess clothing and accessories, and infant wear.

If you like to entertain friends, check out the kitchen accessories, wood-turned and carved items, coasters, scented candles, wine accessories, and baskets.

For your pets, you’ll be able to select from a variety of pet wear and toys, dog and cat beds, cat trees and scratching posts.

So mark your calendars for September 30, and be a part of this growing event.

Come early and purchase a beverage and dessert before perusing the vendor booths, or shop first and stay for a delicious lunch.

And, before leaving, don’t forget to purchase a sweet item to take home from the huge bake sale that will be going on.

For more information, call 219-362-2443.

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