By Barb Draper
Special to The PREVIEW
The ever-popular Russ Hill Wreath Bazaar will open for the 55th consecutive year this Monday, Nov. 12, at Community United Methodist Church, 434 Lewis St.
This is one of the most enjoyable and worthwhile holiday traditions in our community. Each year, thousands of dollars are passed on to local nonprofit groups through the sale of hundreds of beautiful fresh wreaths and centerpieces.
Local greenery and pinecones are being harvested and the scent of our forests will greet customers going through the front door. Both the walk-in and phone order desks will be open weekdays from Nov. 12 through Dec. 3 from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m., with the exception of the Thanksgiving closure Thursday and Friday, Nov. 22 and 23.
Phone orders can be placed by calling 264-2538. This is the designated number used only for the bazaar. Please do not call the church office with your order.
Two wreath sizes will be available. A standard wreath (approximately 25 inches wide) is $35. UPS shipping is available for an additional $20. Shipping dates can be discussed when the order is placed. There is a UPS pickup daily. An extra-large wreath (approximately 40 inches wide) is $60. Due to their size and weight, extra large wreaths cannot be shipped. Advent wreaths my also be made if an advance oder is placed.
Each wreath will be adorned with several pinecones and with a bow that can be chosen from a variety of colors. There is a wide variety of berries, colored balls and theme decorations that can be selected for custom wreaths. An additional charge will be determined according to the items selected. Everyone is invited back to the workroom to observe the wreath-making process.
A maximum of 500 wreaths will be made this year, so it is wise not to wait until the last minute to place an order. Keep in mind that phone and mail orders come in from across the country. Many “relocated” former residents continue the tradition of having “Pagosa wreaths” for their own homes and for gifts.
There is more to the bazaar than just wreaths. Beautiful one-of-a-kind centerpiece arrangements will also be created. Small arrangements will be priced between $15 and $25. Larger ones will range from $30 to $40. Both sizes can be shipped for an additional $20. You may custom order an arrangement or you may select one from the display of both Thanksgiving and Christmas items that will be available for immediate purchase.
There are so many good reasons to purchase from the Russ Hill Bazaar. Perhaps foremost is the fact that all profits from the sales are distributed within Archuleta County to deserving nonprofit groups. The funds are distributed through a mini grant application process.
You can simplify your gift giving decisions, avoid standing in long post office lines and give gifts that will surely be appreciated by anyone. There is no need to worry about size, color, style, personal likes and dislikes, or duplication of gifts. As for your own wreath, you will not find one made from fresher materials or that will be as long lasting. These wreaths can often stay fresh and beautiful throughout much of the winter under normal weather conditions.
You will be purchasing tangible wreaths while at the same time you will be making tangible and intangible gifts to people in need throughout our area.
The “bazaar elves” look forward to helping you.