Christmas in Tamahere launches today in style with the opening of St Stephen’s Christmas Festival and the special, seasonal, twilight craft market.
The 27-year-old fundraising festival with its beautiful, month-long displays of nativity scenes, Christmas decorations and festive refreshments is open Monday to Saturday from 10am to 4pm through to Christmas Eve.
If anyone is in need of an injection of Christmas spirit, St Stephen’s Christmas Festival is just what the doctor ordered. It can also be a refreshingly different venue to take family, friends or business clients.
The festival is the place to enjoy a genteel cup of tea or coffee in fine china and partake of homemade Christmas cake or shortbread before purchasing a Christmas gift or decoration or two. The range continues to be a delight for young and old every year – table centres and wreaths, and decorations for the tree and around the house that are crafted with artistry and imagination.
Each day at 11am and 2pm in the church it’s also the place to hear carol singing by a range of choral groups.
It’s all in a good cause. The proceeds from the sale of decorations are donated to worthy causes – around $20,000 a year and, over the 27-year life of the festival, around $380,000 in total. Recipients include Hospice Waikato, Red Cross, Save the Children and Guide Dogs for the Blind.
The cleverly crafted decorations are the work of around 30 people from the St Stephen’s congregation who meet weekly from February until the festival begins in December to create the distinctive pieces for tree, table, wall or door.
The St Stephen’s Christmas Festival and twilight market are held at the church, corner of Airport Rd and Tamahere Drive. The regular, monthly country market will be held on December 21.
The Christmas Tree farm of Jack and Alice Commerer at 46 Tamahere Drive is another of Tamahere’s contributions to the season. The couple sell well-shaped, Mt Gabriel Christmas trees and are open from 9am to 7pm daily until Christmas.