With holidays fast approaching handMADE Montana is preparing for two artisan fairs: the Helena Holiday MADE fair Dec. 2-3 at the Lewis and Clark County Fairgrounds, and the original Missoula MADE fair, Dec. 11 at the Adams Center.
The MADE fairs, held in Missoula, Helena and Bozeman each fall and early winter, are among the largest and most successful artisan shows in the state. Billed as “more than your ordinary arts and crafts market,” they offer visitors an opportunity to shop for “handmade goods as an alternative to mass-produced items and support local and regional small craft businesses.”
As founder Carol Lynn Lapotka says, “Our curated collection of artisans represents the best of the best, and we put on quite a show!”
Helena Holiday MADE fair: 10 a.m.-4 p.m. Saturday and Sunday, Dec. 4-5, at the Lewis and Clark County Fairgrounds with VIP entry 6-8 p.m. Friday, Dec. 2 ($10) and early bird admission 9-10 a.m. Saturday ($5). Ticket sales benefit Florence Crittenton, a relationship-based organization in Helena that provides an array of support and services to help families thrive.
More than 175 artists share everything from affordable, functional works of art to fine heirloom pieces. Non-profit organizations, food vendors and activities are also on tap.
Admission is free; customers are encouraged to bring a non-perishable food item to help support Helena Food Share.
Missoula Holiday MADE fair: 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Dec. 11 at the Adams Center on the University of Montana campus, with VIP shopping available from 10-11 a.m. Shop all three levels of the Adams Center (balcony, arena floor, and upper gyms) and discover new artists or visit favorites. The 15th annual Missoula Holiday MADE fair showcases works by 200 local artists and nonprofits, and will include free entry, free parking, and plenty of room to shop.
This show was recently listed as one of the best holiday shows in the country for its large curated collection of artisans, representing the best of Montana.
Beat the crowds and purchase a VIP passes for $10, which offers an one-hour head start. Proceeds from the ticket sales go to the Missoula Butterfly House and Insectarium and can be purchased online through GrizTix, the box office, or at the event. Missoula Butterfly House plans to open a premier education facility featuring a tropical butterfly house and insectarium in the Summer of 2023, so there’s no better time to support their dream!
Tote bags are available for $5, and each includes a $10 gift card for the handMADE Montana retail shop in Polson. Proceeds go to the emerging artist scholarship fund to help offset costs for artists who need a little extra help.
Customers are encouraged to bring a non-perishable food item to help support the Missoula Food Bank.