Kick off holiday shopping at Bozeman MADE fair

Fall event brings nearly 200 artists to Brick Breeden Fieldhouse Oct. 6-7

Art Beat

The Bozeman Fall MADE fair kicks off the holiday shopping Oct. 6-7 at Brick Breeden Fieldhouse, with a curated collection of over 195 local and regional artists. Everything from affordable, functional artwork to fine heirloom pieces will be on display from 5-8 p.m. Friday (with a VIP pass), 9-10 a.m. Saturday (Early Bird pass) or 10 a.m.-4 p.m. Saturday (free entry).

Heart and Hand shares kitchen tools and home good items at the Bozeman MADE fair.
Heart and Hand shares kitchen tools and home good items at the Bozeman MADE fair.

“Make a day of it with your friends,” suggests MADE fair organizer Carol Lynn Lapotka. Outdoor vendors offer coffee and food treats, who artists from across the region ply their wares indoors.

Support a good cause and get a head start on holiday shopping with a Friday night VIP pass ($10), valid 5-8 p.m., or an Early Bird $5 pass, valid from 9-10 a.m. Saturday – an hour before the show opens to the general public. Tickets can be purchased online or at the door.

All proceeds from ticket sales benefit Random Acts of Silliness, a theater and visual arts organization that inspires laughter and play in the Gallatin Valley. They build community by sparking whimsy and creativity in the young – and young at heart – through quirky and engaging art installations, theater productions, and random acts of silliness. Their work weaves together playfulness, magic, surprise, and rich storytelling, while supporting artists, sustainability, and equal access to the arts.

In 2022, handMADE Montana raised over $18,000 for local non-profits from the proceeds of the VIP and Early Bird passes at the Bozeman, Missoula, and Helena MADE fairs.

Lapotka again invites wholesale buyers from around the state to connect with handMADE Montana’s unique and talented artisans. Over half of the artists represented can offer their unique products wholesale for retail spaces.

“We encourage buyers to discover new makers and fan favorites and tell their stories in their shops this holiday season,” Lapotka says. She also encourages buyers to shop during VIP hours on Friday when the aisles aren’t as busy, and they can have more of an opportunity to meet and mingle with artists.

A limited number of VIP passes can be purchased online.

The MADE fair’s mission is to increase awareness of handmade goods as an alternative to mass-produced items and to support local and regional small craft businesses by providing a place to sell their goods.

“We provide opportunities to artists of all levels – from hobbyists to seasoned professionals,” says Lapotka, who also showcases these goods at her HandMADE Montana store in Polson, and at fairs in Missoula and Helena.

Shoppers are encouraged to bring a non-perishable food item to help support the Gallatin Valley Food Bank.