Beginning Monday, Dec. 17, the Madison Makers Market and Common Wealth Development will be hosting the first ever Winter Wonderful celebration with events taking place over the course of the week at the Commonwealth Gallery.
Starting Monday, from 2 p.m. to 9 p.m. and the following Tuesday from 10 a.m. to 9 p.m., there will be a pop-up shop with a plethora of vendors with local and handcrafted items. The spread of vendors is curated by owner of Madison Makers Market Sara Thompto, who ensures there will be a balanced variety of different items and crafts.
“No one category is too saturated,” Thompto said.
In addition to the pop-up shops on Monday and Tuesday, a slew of events will be held at the Commonwealth Gallery in support of various nonprofits. Thompto said the idea for Winter Wonderful stemmed from her desire to work with different nonprofits.
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The organizations selected were based on criteria determined by Thompto, with a focus on health, safety, education, economy and all nonprofits being associated with Community Shares of Wisconsin.
They worked with around 30 different sponsors to make Winter Wonderful a reality with the help of volunteers. They all consider themselves “makers in the Madison community,” according to Thompto, although outside volunteers are accepted as well.
Entry to the kick-off party for the week-long celebration will include music, food and beverages, as well as a chance at door prizes. Each of the events have a $10 donation per person for entry, with the exception of the kids night, which is $15 for an entire family.
Monday’s event will be benefiting its co-host, Common Wealth Development, an organization devoted to improving the housing and business climate of Dane County neighborhoods. This will signal the start of a six-day silent auction as well, with donations coming from various Madison businesses.
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Tuesday Dec. 18 will feature a concert series with performances from three artists from the Madison area including 2 Broads 1 Band, A Town Called Endeavor and Hoot’n Annie. The performances will benefit Housing Initiatives, an organization dedicated to combatting homelessness, while snacks and beverages will be provided.
Wednesday, Dec. 19 will be for the whole family. Winter Wonderful Kids Night will feature kid-friendly activities such as games, a craft workshop, cookie decorating and a Winter Wonderful backdrop for taking family pictures. The catering will be provided by Fuegos, a local steakhouse, with proceeds going to the Gay-Straight Alliance For Safe Schools, who advocate for school environments where LGBTQ+ students thrive.
The event Thursday, Dec. 20 will be an international food night, with the catering again coming from Fuegos, featuring foods with influences spanning the globe. Benefits from Thursday will go to of the River Alliance of Wisconsin, who advocate for water preservation statewide.
An adult craft and game night will be hosted Friday, Dec. 21, featuring crafts, demos from Madison-based crafters and trivia games with prizes. The beneficiary of this event will be the Dane County Rape Crisis Center, an organization dedicated caring for survivors of sexual violence.
The final event closing out the celebration will be Saturday, Dec. 22. There will be typical Wisconsin foods — like cheese and Kringle — and food and beverages coming from Wisconsin-based brands. There will also be music provided by local artist DJ Audiopaige, “Wisconsin-themed photo-ops” and the announcement of the winners of the silent auction that began Dec. 17.