Holiday bazaars offer cornucopia of gifts, food, fun CARROLL COUNTY DIVERSIONS

Wherever shoppers stop, they will find "bazaar" happenings in Carroll County this weekend.

Caught up in the holiday spirit, area churches are brimming with crafts and Christmas decorations, gifts and surprises from Santa. The jolly old elf has planned several appearances, too. If he falls behind his busy schedule, you won't be hungry while you wait. Many bazaars are serving pancake breakfasts and pit beef lunches.


* In addition to crafts and white elephants, St. Paul's Lutheran Church in Arcadia is selling a way to keep dinner on the tables of the needy. From 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. tomorrow, shoppers at the annual bazaar at Route 30 and Dover Road can buy a chicken, cow or pig to benefit Heifer Project International.

A dollar buys a chicken; $20 buys a whole flock. Or, you can buy a share in a goat, pig or cow.


Buyers won't be taking any animals home, though. The money will help send a living gift to a needy family -- as nearby as Garrett County or as far away as Africa. A card comes with the donation.

"We bought several chickens last year for a living gift," said Anne S. Durham, chairwoman of the bazaar. "Then, we gave cards announcing the gift, instead of presents, to our friends" in whose names the donations had been made.

* Looking for an original ornament for your tree? You will find hundreds of bread-dough creations by the Rev. Martin Demek at the two-day Christmas Bazaar sponsored by St. Bartholomew's Roman Catholic Church at 3071 Park Ave., Manchester. Festivities run from 10 a.m. until 6 p.m. tomorrow and 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. Sunday.

The pastor will share his secret, too. "I found a recipe in a microwave cookbook, and each year I've gotten a little more elaborate," he said.

After cutting bread dough into about 20 designs, he paints and glazes the shapes. Additions to his stock of gingerbread houses and snowmen are Garfield, Pluto, and Donald and Daisy Duck. Each is signed and dated. He said he gives a special ornament each year to families who volunteer at the church.

"It's something they could remember me by," he says.

Bring your appetite to the bazaar. The Knights of Columbus will serve pit beef to accompany homemade crab soup from Captain Bob's of Manchester and chicken corn soup from the Dutch Corner. Breakfast will be served, too, for early birds.

Three rooms will be bursting with gifts, wreaths, religious items and decorations crafted since January by church members. Look for Julie Longhenry's handmade rosaries. You'll find favorite baked goods and homemade pickles, relishes, and jellies. There's a market just for kids. And Santa Claus will be available for photos.


Raffle prizes include a Super Nintendo, $50 savings bond, and $25 gift certificate to Cranberry Mall, a bench crafted in the Amish country and a handmade creche.

For children, there will be face painting, candy and prize wheels, a lollipop tree and a bowling alley.

And those are not all of the buying opportunities. Just get your lists in order and put on your shopping shoes. Admission and parking are free.

* Wesley Freedom United Methodist at 961 Johnsville Road, Eldersburg, will serve fried oysters and barbecue to the tunes of carolers. Shoppers are invited to a country store stocked with homemade baked goods. Myra Hopkins is repeating one of the event's most popular items. She dresses Mrs. Butterworth bottles in the latest fashions. Doors are open from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m.

* Just down the road on Main Street, Sykesville, you can visit the St. Barnabas Country Fair from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. tomorrow. African art and quilts are among the items on sale.

* Liberty High School plays host to 120 exhibitors from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. tomorrow. They promise shoppers fine crafts and collectibles. Proceeds benefit the school's band.


* Come early to Mount Olive United Methodist, on Gillis Falls Road in Mount Airy. Members will flip pancakes from 7 a.m. to 10 a.m. Stay until 3 p.m. for sales of hand-crafted gifts and nearly new toys.

* See the trains at Christmas in the Valley from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. tomorrow when Pleasant Valley Fire Hall opens its doors at 2030 Pleasant Valley Road, to a train garden, crafts and one more holiday bazaar.