Central Carroll: For St. John Catholic Church, Christmas Bazaar is ‘about community unity’

St. John Catholic Church will host its 66th Christmas Bazaar on Dec. 7. Members of the St. John Ladies Sodality are pictured, from left, at a previous bazaar: Bert Vande Ryt, Gini McKain, Prefect Kathy Carter, Kathy Baumgardner, Cyndi Coburn, Marie Close and Erlinda West.
St. John Catholic Church will host its 66th Christmas Bazaar on Dec. 7. Members of the St. John Ladies Sodality are pictured, from left, at a previous bazaar: Bert Vande Ryt, Gini McKain, Prefect Kathy Carter, Kathy Baumgardner, Cyndi Coburn, Marie Close and Erlinda West. (Courtesy photo)

For their 66th Christmas Bazaar, St. John Catholic Church and School has added something new and exciting — a train garden.

Add that to the shopping: decor and gifts, Christmas ornaments and decorations, books, Balsam Hill trees, swag, baked goods and more. You won’t want to miss this bazaar on Dec. 7 from 8:30 a.m. to 3 p.m.


The bazaar features over 17 rooms to explore, including three rooms for Christmas items only. There’s a Man Cave and Wood Room for the guys, a sweets room with 13 different flavors of fudge, holiday baked goods, pies and other goodies, a Gifts-to-Go Room with themed gift baskets, plus a new Farmers Market with jams, jellies and more.

“Come early — last year one-and-a-half of the Christmas rooms were sold out by 10 a.m.,” said Teresa Richardson, chairperson of the bazaar.


Kids will find a children’s mini-mall where ages 12 and younger can shop and find gifts priced for a child’s slim budget. Look for stocking stuffers and holiday candy crafts, holiday arrangements and centerpieces; books, CDs and videos; toys and stuffed animals (gently used and new); jewelry; and more. Santa will be there, too.

A silent auction area offers a variety of beautiful wreaths, a few pieces of antique furniture, a holiday Barbie collection, and themed gift baskets, like the Taste of Maryland Crab Pot basket. A new addition to the silent auction is the Disney World section with Disney-themed baskets, a 90th anniversary collectible Minnie and Mickey, “Avatar” items, classic Disney items and more.

“It’s amazing to see all these people come together,” Richardson said. “We are so blessed. We have a parish that just gives. And we pay it forward, too. All year long, we work with [The] Shepherd’s Staff, the Westminster Rescue Mission and other outreach programs. When people donate to us it not only goes to us for the Christmas Bazaar, but it also helps others. It is about community unity.”

Kids of all ages love model trains. Richardson said the train garden will be set up inside the St. John Portico, right next to the school.

“Father Mark is a huge train enthusiast,” she said. “He suggested [the train garden], so people donated trains and we have volunteers to run it.”

At the bazaar, visitors may purchase tickets for a chance to win one of two train sets, a Disney train and an FAO Schwartz-themed train. Many rooms will also have train items for sale, including a train cake in the baked goods room.

Lunch will be served from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. in the Portico. Richardson said they will have a traditional chicken dinner, and yummy dishes prepared by the church’s Hispanic ministry.

You’ll find bingo inside the school cafeteria, where a “quick cafe” will also offer hot dogs and pizza for sale from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m.

When talking about the bazaar, Richardson lights up. “It brings everyone in this community together,” she said. “St. John has been a part of this community for over 160 years. Come to the bazaar and you will feel like you are coming home."

For more information, call 410-848-4744 or check out The Saint John Catholic Church Facebook page. The church is at 43 Monroe St. in Westminster.

Winter concert

The Carroll Singers will present the concert, “Winter Beautiful” on Monday and Tuesday, Dec. 2 and 3, at 7:30 each evening at Westminster High School, at 1225 Washington Road.

The concert will showcase songs like “Winter Wonderland,” “Sleigh Ride” and “White Christmas.”


Artistic Director Julia Richard will conduct the program and will be joined by the chorus, Don Horneff on piano, Lou Keyser on drums and Jeff Hiner on bass. For the song “In the Bleak Mid-Winter,” Barbara Bowen accompany on oboe, and trumpeters Ken Hasenei and Mirrel Wothers will join in on Handel’s “Hallelujah!”

Tickets cost $15 for adults or $12 in advance, $9 for students or $7 in advance, and children younger than 6 are free. You can find tickets at: The Arts Center, Coffey Music, Menchey Music and Carroll Singers Members.

For more information, visit http://carrollsingers.com/ or call 410-848-5581.

Pancakes and Christmas

Deer Park United Methodist Church will hold its annual Pancake Breakfast and Christmas Bazaar on Saturday, Dec. 7 from 7 a.m. to 2 p.m.

You can gear up for shopping with warm pancakes and fixings from 7 to 10:30 a.m. in the church’s downstairs social hall. Co-sponsored by the Deer Park UMC Men’s Group and the Deer Park Lions Club, the breakfast will include pancakes, scrambled eggs and sausage, applesauce and a choice of beverage. The cost is $7 for adults, $3 for children ages 5-12, and free for those age 4 and younger.

After breakfast, it’s time to shop. In the rear of the social hall, find the “Book Nook,” with loads of used books, games, and DVDs. Then head upstairs to the Nearly New Room, with gently used bargains and treasures. The Church Craft Room offers stocking stuffers and small gifts, and is also a great place for kids to shop.

“This is a neighborhood event, where people look forward each year to seeing old friends and meeting new ones, as well as finding holiday treasures and treats,” said church member Joy Grimm, who works with the vendors for this event. “Santa and Mrs. Claus may visit late morning.”

Take a break inside the beautifully decorated-for-Christmas church sanctuary, where relaxing music will be playing, or stop by the Bake Shoppe for homemade cookies, cakes, candy, and peanut butter fudge.

The Silent Auction Table will offer a DeWalt tools gift box, items from Tupperware and 31 Bags, a golf bag, a special Boyd’s Bear, and multiple gift baskets for all ages. Proceeds will help support the missions of the church, with 10% going to The Shepherd’s Staff.

Look for items for cat and dog lovers, collectibles vintage items, classic Vera Bradley bags, jewelry and scarves, crocheted baby items, engraved signs, holiday wreaths and ornaments, and other decorations. You’ll find specialty candies, coffee, and teas and more, plus consultants for Tupperware, Avon and Color Street Nails.

Lunch will be served from 11:30 a.m. to 2 p.m., with homemade soups, hot dogs, barbecue, and chicken salad sandwiches, plus an assortment of cold drinks and coffee.

Kids age 2 and older will find "Cookies & Crafts,” a cookie-decorating workshop from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m., led by Ruth Myers. Assorted mini craft projects will also be available to assemble with glue, stickers, Popsicle sticks, pom-poms, and pipe cleaners.

“These crafts exemplify the Christmas story with the baby Jesus,” Grimm said. “Feel the Christmas spirit as the children express their creative talents. A small donation [for the craft] is appreciated but not required.”

For more information, call 410-848-2313 or visit them online at www.dpumc.net

The church is located at 2205 Sykesville Road (Md. 32) in Smallwood.


St. Ben’s 5K Run

Runners can start the holiday season with the Christmas Camel Canter 5K hosted by St. Benjamin’s Lutheran Church in Westminster, with all proceeds going to The Shepherd’s Staff.


“On Dec. 7, we are hosting our sixth annual Christmas Canter 5K run,” said Pastor David Schafer of St. Benjamin’s.

Runners and walkers can register online at runsignup.com or at St. Benjamin’s Lutheran in the morning. The race kicks off at 8:30 a.m., proceeding through the homes of Meadow Creek behind Ihop.

“We start and finish in the parking lot of the church,” Schafer said. “It’s a great course. We have 65 to 70 runners each year.”

Runners will find water and snacks at the race and everyone who registers gets a long-sleeve T-shirt.

Learn more online at www.stbenslutheran.org or call 410- 848-3311.

Lois Szymanski covers Finksburg, Gamber, Pleasant Valley, Reese, Sandymount, Silver Run, Smallwood, Union Mills and Westminster. Reach her at 443-293-7811 or LoisSzymanski@hotmail.com.

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