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As much as you may want to deny it, the holiday shopping season is here, but don’t stress! Shopping for friends and family can be fun, and the Twin Cities provide great opportunities to make the whole family happy on even the longest shopping excursion. The selection below includes a mix of family-friendly outings, adults-only attractions, and products ranging from high-end to budget conscious. Clear your calendar for these holiday events that will get you in the spirit of the season.
Textile Center Holiday Gallery Shop: For this annual holiday event, the Textile Center Shop expands to include new merchandise and brings in professional artists and makers to demonstrate and showcase their works. With a focus on fiber arts, the shop carries apparel, home décor, gifts, art supplies, and more. Demonstrations and trunk shows include textile designing, felting, jewelry beading, and block printing. The Shop is open Mon.-Sat. (Now-Dec. 26, Textile Center, 3000 University Ave. S.E., Minneapolis, textilecentermn.org)
Holidazzle Village: After last year’s mixed-to-hostile reception, the second annual holiday market is switching things up: Along with relocating to Loring Park, it has nixed its unpopular entrance fee, making the event free and open to the public. In addition to a wide selection of food and arts vendors, the village is adding family-friendly activities like holiday movie screenings, an ice skating rink, and daily live entertainment. The market kicks off on Friday, November 27 with a fireworks display, tree lighting, and music from the Minnesota Chorale. (Every Thurs.-Sun., Nov. 27-Dec.20, Loring Park, 1382 Willow St., Minneapolis holidazzle.com)
Grand Meander: St. Paul shopping district along Grand Avenue kicks welcomes the holiday season with this annual holiday festival. The family-friendly festivities kick off with a visit from Santa, and events throughout the day include free soup tastings, fire truck and trolley rides, caroling, the Red Flannel 5K, and art shows. The Grand Meander spans the entire 20-block length of Grand Ave. Participating shops and restaurants include Golden Fig, Tavern on Grand, Red Balloon Bookstore, and many more. (8:30 a.m.-5 p.m., Dec. 5, Grand Ave., St. Paul, grandave.com)
Liquor & Lace – A Winter Evening Fashion Show: Hosted by up-and-coming local Norseman Distillery in their newly renovated tasting room, this show will feature looks from local designers and boutiques, with hair and makeup artistry concepts from the artistic directors at WarPaint International Beauty Agency. Including an open bar and complimentary hors d’oeuvres, all tips go to support a designated charitable organization. The show will include fashion from Atmosfere, Showroom, Flirt Boutique, and The Celtic Croft. An after party with an in-house DJ follows the show. Guests must be 21+ to attend. (7 p.m., December 12, Norseman Distillery, 451 Taft St. N.E., Minneapolis, tickets at eventbrite.com)
Casket Arts Holiday Marketplace: More than 40 northeast Minneapolis artists and makers will showcase their works at this first annual event, sponsored by Casket Arts. The indoor craft fair will feature plenty of locally made holiday gifts, including paintings, jewelry, prints, sculptures, and more. Live music and treats from Groveland Confections, Cookie Cart, and Mojo Coffee will accompany the market. The marketplace is free and open to the public. (10 a.m.-6 p.m., Dec. 12, Casket Arts Building, 681 17th Ave. N.E., Minneapolis, facebook.com)
Minneapolis Artist & Flea Market: Featuring local, handmade goods alongside vintage and antique items, this unconventional flea market takes over Bryant-Lake Bowl for a day of shopping and supporting local artists (and a game of bowling if you’re up for the challenge). Featured items at the market include lotions, soaps, jewelry, vintage apparel, prints, and more. The market promises to be a stress-free shopping experience, even a few days before Christmas. (9 a.m.-3 p.m., Dec. 20, Bryant-Lake Bowl, 810 W. Lake St., Minneapolis, mnartists.org)