The mall and the big box stores are well and good, but if you want to shop for unique gifts while immersed in holiday spirit, you can’t do better than to check out a local holiday market or shopping night. Support small business, nibble a cookie or two, and find just the right present for everyone on your list. Here are 10 events worth a visit.
The Holiday Market at Snowport, Seaport District, Boston | Through Dec. 31
This super-sized market features more than 120 makers offering wares from hand-crafted chocolates and locally crafted kombucha to quirk socks and nativity scenes featuring lobsters. Learn more at bostonseaport.xyz/holidaymarket.
Holiday Shoppes at Tuscan Village, Salem, N.H. | Thursdays through Sundays, through Dec. 31
Shop this festive open-air collective of 30 small businesses and artists for gifts including candles, donuts, activewear, jewelry, baked goods, handmade bags, and much more. Then warm up under the heated tent and enjoy a snack or some hot chocolate – with or without a dash of bourbon or tequila for a little extra heat. Complete information at the event website.
Second Glance Thrift Store Holiday Market, Gloucester | Dec. 7-10, 9 a.m.-5 p.m. each day
A local thrift store with style, Second Glance is hosting a four-day holiday market featuring best-of-the-best festive finds from their donations. Purchases benefit the work of The Open Door food pantries. New inventory will be released each day on a different theme: Cape Ann art and new clothing, farmhouse Christmas, gold and silver jewelry, and vintage and boho Christmas. But arrive early: Dedicated Second Glance fans have been known to line-up before doors open.
Beverly Holiday Stroll, Beverly | Dec. 9, 4-9 p.m.
Wander Cabot Street and Rantoul Street for discounts, specials, and plenty of holiday cheer. Special holiday totes and stickers designed by a local artist will be available at some retailers. Make a purchase and earn an entry into the Holiday Passport drawing to win a goodie bag of discounts and gift cards. More information available at the Beverly Main Streets website.
Rockport Holiday Shopping Night, Rockport | Dec. 9, 4-9 p.m.
Stroll Rockport’s quintessentially charming downtown and visit more than 30 participating retailers who will be offering up discounts, treats, and raffle tickets – there will be $1,750 in gift cards raffled off at the end of the night. More details are available at christmasinrockport.com.
Newburyport Invitation Nights, Newburyport | Dec. 9 and 16, 6-9 p.m.
This annual Newburyport tradition invites shoppers to stroll the decked out downtown, enjoy drinks and snacks offered up by local retailers, and find gifts for your parents, siblings, friends … and maybe yourself.
Fennel House Holiday Market, Beverly | Dec. 10, 11 a.m.-3 p.m.
Fennel House Studio, a creative community space in Beverly, will be hosting its annual artisans market featuring wine tastings, a pastry pop-up, and plenty of unique locally made gifts including whimsical jewelry and art, modern home and office accessories, and natural bath goods. More details available on the studio Instagram page.
Appleton Farms Winter Market, Ipswich | Dec. 10, 12-4 p.m.
The Appleton Farms farm store will be joined by other local food growers, bakers, artisans, and makers for a rustically charming holiday fair. Details on at the Trustees website.
Holiday Pop-Up Market, Iron Ox Farm, Hamilton | Dec. 17, 10 a.m.-1 p.m.
Iron Ox Farm hosts a pop-up market stocked with locally grown produce, delicious treats, and arts and gifts from are makers. Stock up on veggies for a holiday feast, indulge in a cookie from Sandpiper Bakery, and stop by the Pigeon Cove Ferments table for some kraut or kombucha. Complete vendor list and details on the farm’s Instagram page.
Last Minute Holiday Market, Gloucester | Dec. 17, 11 a.m.-3 p.m.
When Christmas is a week away and you still have gifts to buy, visit the Cape Ann Makers Market’s Last Minute Holiday Market to shop locally handcrafted items including sea salt, sea glass art, pottery, jewelry, soaps, and more.