16 July 2017

Embrace your inner elves: Christmas is closer than you think!

| Maryann Mussared
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Suppose Christmas got repackaged in such a way we were able to concentrate on the really fun activities, such as relaxing, hanging out with family and friends, and eating yummy Christmas inspired food, rather than parking hassles, drawing up lists, endless shopping and having to the clean the house? Wouldn’t that be wonderful! Well, that is exactly what will happen with the upcoming Christmas in July Market at the Queanbeyan Showground, the merriest event in the region’s winter calendar!

Here is that very important diary date for your winter entertainment: Sunday 30 July 10 am to 4 pm. Organized by the Queanbeyan Palerang Regional Council, it is all about having fun, it is all about beautiful locally produced art wares, great food and drinks and it all happens in a friendly community environment all in one place. Now in its tenth year, the Christmas Market is eagerly anticipated by many, with the number of fans growing each year.

 Ian Burrell's Supersized kite

Kite flyer Ian Burrell’s Supersized kite. Photo: Ian Burrell.

The Christmas Market is a terrific opportunity for local artists and craft producers to get out of their studios for the day, set up a pop-up stall, and show off their wares. Then there is the delicious food and local wine, demonstrations from Canberra Dog Sleds that could even give Rudolph a run for his money, adorable dachshunds racing their little legs off, and kite man Ian Burrell showing off his brightest and best supersize kites. Add to all this kid-friendly entertainment of a jumping castle, face painting, and henna designs, plus musical highlights from Majors Creek Music Festival, and I think just about everyone will be covered.


Dachsunds are already getting into practice! Photo: Pink Shirt Photo.

The region’s arts community will be well-represented with colourful linocuts from the Wamboin studio, quirky nature-based ceramics from Carwoola potter Caroline Walker-Grime, and the bright colours and designs from the potters of Big Island Designs.

Lino prints from Wamboin Studio

Lino prints from Wamboin Studio take influence from the simplicity of country life. Photo: Wamboin Studio.

Base ethical soaps

Base ethical soaps are made proudly in Bungendore. Photo: Base Soaps.

Ceramics by Big Island Designs

Colourful functional ceramics by Big Island Designs. Photo: Big Island Designs.

Nature-inspired ceramics

Nature-inspired ceramics by Carwoola Potter Caroline Wade-Grime. Photo: Caroline Wade-Grime.

Other special items to look for include handcrafted ethical soaps made locally in Bungendore by Base Soap: these soaps look and feel and smell amazing and everyone loves a gift of soap. Talented mother and daughter duo A Little Bit of North will be presenting their range of pendants and earrings, with the mandala designs drawn by Abby and the jewelry created by her mother.

Affirmation pendant

Affirmation pendant by mother and daughter jewelry duo, A Little Bit of North. Photo: A Little Bit of North.

The best thing about Christmas is giving, and this year the Queanbeyan Palerang Regional Council has partnered with St Benedict’s Queanbeyan to have a Christmas tree erected in the centre of the market as a Community Giving Tree. Members of the public are welcome to come and leave blankets and canned food, or even cat or dog food to support homeless people who have pets.

The popular Santa Pet Photos are back, so please bring along your well-behaved four-legged friends; all money raised will go to animal charities.

Something new this year is early access for a limited few. If you think you will be like an excited kid that wakes before everyone else on Christmas morning, take this opportunity to sneak out early, get a good parking spot, and be first in the queue for a coffee or something delicious to eat. Click here to register.

Community Events Officer Laura Shelley says of the day: “This is a not-for-profit market and Queanbeyan-Palerang Regional Council is proud to work with the community to spread mid-year Christmas cheer and highlight our people and our region.”

Don’t miss the big update during the week on what else you can expect to enjoy, especially the line-up of a fantastic choice of food, drinks, and details about a cooking demonstration from Le Tres Bon award-winning chef Christophe Gregoire. This is really shaping up to be unforgettable Christmas experience!

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