Art this weekend: Crafts, Charity and Small Business Saturday in Warwick, Newport & Providence

21 Nov

This month we are talking about shopping local, and preferably hand-made as a way to give to your community. Well this weekend you’ve got a great opportunity to do both at the Ocean State Artisans 22nd Annual Holiday Crafts Festival.

One of the members of Ocean State Artisans, Benjamin John Coleman (who is an amazing origami bonsai artist), shared with me one of the most important missions of the crafts festival:

Our show is a charity fundraiser; all admission receipts are donated to local RI charities. This year we will have volunteers from Rhode Island Communities for Addiction Recovery Efforts (RICARES) to help our members with unloading their cars, so RICARES will receive the bulk of admissions receipts. RICARES works to increase retention and prevent relapse among people who transition from active addiction into recovery from addiction.  In other words, RICARES helps people who have stopped using drugs. We also gave Meeting Street School students 500 bags to decorate, and these bags will be for sale at the door.  Meeting Street will also be selling their beautiful holiday cards.

And of course we’ll be collecting food for the Rhode Island Community Food Bank.  Normally you’d pay $2 to get into our show, but with a food donation you can get in for just $1.  Last year we collected over 5,000 pounds of food!

The Ocean State Artisans Craft Festival is held at the Community College of Rhode Island‘s Knight Campus in Warwick from 10am – 5pm Friday and 9am – 4pm on Saturday. They have 96 crafters this year, up by almost one third from last year. There is plenty of free parking and it’s in a convenient location to the mall – if you are brave enough for that!

We’ve got amazing items, alpaca sweaters, prints, paintings, aprons, ceramics, innovative jewelry, highly crafted boxes, and gifts galore.  In fact, we’ve got some amazingly innovative, locally made gifts you won’t see anywhere else, at prices you can afford.  So not only will shoppers save money, they’ll feel good knowing that they’ve helped support the local economy.

Here is a video made by the Ocean State Artisans:


Of course, this being the busiest shopping weekend of the year, there are plenty of other events going on this weekend. However, since I’m way behind on my Turkey day cooking and packing, I need to briefly mention two more:

The Newport Art Museum Faculty Holiday Arts & Crafts Sale – Creative, unique gifts for everyone on your holiday shopping list – including you! All items are made by Coleman Center faculty. 20% of the proceeds benefit the Coleman Center.
Friday, November 23, 10 am – 4 pm
Saturday, November 24, 10 am – 4 pm
Sunday, November 25, 10 am – 12 pm

The Providence Holiday Market begins on Saturday, November 24th, also known as “Small Business Saturday” created by American Express. Outdoors in “Grant’s Block” at the corner of Union and Westminster Streets, the happy tent city of artisans, farmers and food vendors are there every Saturday from November 24 to December 22 between 11AM and 4PM. Take a break from the malls and shop Westminster Street.

From all of us at Festival Fete, have a very Happy Thanksgiving and stay tuned on Friday for another sneak peak at some of our fabulous artists that will be at Festival Fete’s Holiday Market on Dec. 1st and 2nd – THAT’S NEXT WEEKEND!!

We are very thankful for our sponsor, Snip-its!

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