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All Saints’ Episcopal Church cancels 2020 Holly Days event

All Saints’ Episcopal Church in Southern Shores has decided to cancel their Holly Days event for the fall of 2020.

Parish administrator Jenn Swaringen said that the church made the decision to cancel in a meeting held last week due to COVID-19 concerns.

“After much discussion, we sadly didn’t believe that we could host it this year safely. Next year is another year. We may host a similar event next spring (COVID permitting) and look forward to resuming the tradition next fall,” said Dave Briggman, who spearheads the event with his wife, Sandy Briggman.

Swaringen explained that Holly Days was the church’s major yearly fundraiser, supporting the church and its outreach to local charities. An “arts and crafts festival” of sorts, Holly Days welcomed guests to peruse donated, reused jewelry, handmade arts, pottery, stained glass and more. Briggman said the even has been held for 17 years.

“We loved that event because it didn’t take any multi-level marketing,” said Swaringen. “It was a lot of local small vendors.”

The event was normally scheduled the weekend before Thanksgiving and took about six months to plan. “We would have started taking vendor applications right around now,” Swaringen explained. “Starting in August for sure.”

“We hosted 34 vendors last year and featured other attractions such as a silent action, a refurbished jewelry booth, a refurbished toy booth, gourmet frozen casseroles and baked goods, among others,” Briggman shared.

He added, “The festival is a popular fixture for holiday shoppers and is highly attended.”

Swaringen said that people from all over the Outer Banks would attend, and even some from Virginia. Vendors from across the area would sign up to be included. “We did have quite the turnout,” she said.

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