The Holiday Market will take place at the Pavilion located at 330 South Meridian Puyallup, WA 98371. The Holiday Market consists of 43 Farmer’s Market vendors from 11 am to 8 pm. Jen Rinehart, Farmers Market manager for the Puyallup Main Street Association, explained: “It’s an opportunity to come shop their local market vendors for the holidays. Part of what we drive and push is to shop local. “So fresh and so green” is our tagline for the Farmer’s Market. It’s all about having local vendors with local products. We get a lot of feedback from people saying ‘we wish we had a community market’ this is us trying to answer that.
Some examples of items that will be for sale include: pet clothing, toys, specialty food products; for example, cupcakes, gifts items, kid’s clothing, soap, jewelry, art glass, pies, pork and beef, bird houses, fudge, and incredible cutting boards and I do mean incredible. Honestly, I’m thinking about giving a cutting board to my parents, toffee, handmade clothing, pot holders, holiday aprons, fountains, Smith Brothers Farms, Tacoma Glass Blowing Studio is our regular market vendor, hot chocolate gift packs, a character artist that wants to do custom made holiday cards, pet portraits from Wildlife Water Colors, if you bring a picture of your pet she will do a custom water color of them.
There are normally over 100 vendors on a typical Saturday Farmer’s Market.”
The Santa Parade is at 5 pm and consists of a lighted Santa Parade. We have over 100 entrants and this is an annual tradition. It takes approximately and hour to hour and 15 minutes. All entrances have to light their vehicles or displays of some sort. The very last float is of Santa. Then the parade is over and is close to the park and then Santa will come on the rotary stage in Pioneer Park. Costco will also be there kindly providing cocoa and cookies that Santa will be handing out.
Immediately after the Santa Parade, is the community tree lighting that is put on by the city at 6:15 pm. A tree is set up in Pioneer Park. “And then hopefully people will go to the Holiday Market until 8 pm. We usually we see 5,000 people for the Santa Parade and this is a big deal for the tree lighting, too.
Two years ago in 2010, we tried the Holiday Market, before my time working here, and last year we didn’t reserve it in time so we did the holiday on ice,” Jen explained.
The Puyallup Main Street Association is a 501c3 non-profit organization that is not associated with the City of Puyallup or the Chamber of Commerce. Michele McGill, executive director for the Puyallup Main Street Association, explained: “The Puyallup Main Street Association’s (PMSA) goal is to create a vital and inviting downtown to promote quality business, cultural, and community growth. It’s about driving business downtown and helping support those businesses.
PMSA is about anything we can do to help local merchants. It is based on the 4 principles of the National Main Street program: design, organization; promotions; and economic development.
Our promotions committee produces events like the Santa Parade, Meeker Days, and the Farmers’ Market. We even clean up our downtown with our Clean Sweep program. We’re always trying out different events.
Last year, we had an artificial ice rink in the pavilion and this year we have the Santa Parade and Holiday Market. We’re always trying to be innovative and we’ve done an art and wine walk in October.
We are not membership driven, like the Chamber. We are mission driven. We offer different opportunities for our current members through discounts on our events or announcements in our e-newsletter, The Buzz, or on our website and Facebook.
PMSA is able to receive B&O Tax contributions from businesses. These contributions help us maintain our events throughout the year. Any business who contributes to PMSA receives a 75% credit on their B&O tax for the next year; and, they can receive 25% on the current year’s Federal Income Tax.
It’s a win-win for everyone.”
Michele commented on the PMSA’s events: “The great thing about our events, such as the Santa Parade is the fact that it allows the community to participate in the event. If it weren’t for the volunteers, PMSA would not be able to produce such successful events. It’s the volunteers who make these events happen.”
Jen feels the best thing about the “Light up the Season” event is, “that the community is supporting local and small businesses.”
Michele commented on what many people may not know about the PMSA in general, “Most people don’t know that Puyallup Main Street Association partners with the Kiwanis Club of Puyallup to produce the Santa Parade. And, PMSA produces the Holiday Market; and provides and hangs the snowflakes on the sides of the buildings downtown. We even wrap the trees in lights for the holidays.
The City of Puyallup performs the Tree Lighting Ceremony at Pioneer Park.”
Jen revealed how the PMSA was unique, “There are only 11 accredited main street associations in the state of Washington.”
Jen recommends families with small children to the Light up the Season events, “They get the most out of these events.”
For more information, please visit: puyallupmainstreet.com, call: 253 840-2631, or email: firstname.lastname@example.org.
By: Carly Calabrese, staff for Tacoma.com