Georgetown’s holiday season will look different this year, but the Downtown Georgetown Association (DGA) is making sure the Square will still put folks in the Christmas spirit with a special December Market Day.
This year would have been the Stroll’s 40th, and marked by a special anniversary celebration reminiscent of the event’s first year. But, as an ongoing pandemic cast doubts on plans for the Stroll, which usually draws 55,000 people downtown, and vendor applications plunged from the usual 500-600 to 131, the DGA reconsidered.
“We were already going to be having a much smaller event. It wasn’t going to be Stroll,” DGA President Lisa King says. “We were really going to have to shave off a lot of pieces. No Bethlehem Village, no parade, all the traditional favorites. That was a concern for us. We didn’t want to have an event for its own sake that would leave people disappointed.”
Still, while 131 vendors might not have been enough for the Stroll, DGA realized it was the perfect amount for a Market Day event.
During a typical year, DGA hosts Market Days every second Saturday of the month from March to November; a time when food vendors and artisans of all kinds sell their wares on around the Square. To fill the Stroll gap, DGA will host a holiday-themed Market Day, also known as Holly-days Market, from 9am to 6pm on Saturday, December 12. Lisa notes the 12/12/2020 date repetition is sure to bring good luck.
She’s grateful the city agreed to close Austin Avenue from 6th to 9th streets to accommodate social distancing, and streets that usually close for Market Days. “It was nice for them to work with us to allow that,” she says.
Attendees can look forward to street performances, live music, an adult dance troupe and a caroling choir. They hope to have a Santa Meet & Greet, and the Grinch, “the epitome of 2020,” as Lisa says, will attend. Market Days usually runs until 4 p.m., but DGA is extending it to 6 pm to catch the magnificent lights illuminating the Square in the evenings this holiday season.
Lisa hopes the Holly-days Market benefits more than just vendors and attendees; she also hopes it uplifts downtown shops. As a small business owner, she knows the toll COVID has taken on stores, which she says have been hurt by the cancellation of two major events—the Red Poppy Festival and the Stroll.
“I know, first-hand, what a hard year this has been for retail. We are strongly encouraging all the shops around the Square to set up something outside their shops for sidewalk sales and promotions,” she says. “I’m really hoping shops around the downtown area will be doing everything they can to take advantage of the foot traffic. Hopefully this is a little something that helps everybody.”
Learn more about the Holly-days Market at TheGeorgetownSquare.com.
Arts Avenue The Dance Gallery Blue Vibe
Performing Arts Studio Thawind Mills
Daniel Guevara Morgan Nicole Elle Townley
Handmade Artisan Goods
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Georgetown Pecan Co. Fresh Jams & Jellies
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