PHOTO: Courtesy DowntownDC | Courtesy DowntownDC
Tired of great merchants’ great but predictable deals for Black Friday or the December holidays? The answer to the usual gifts may be in downtown DC! Artisan markets are wonderful places to find one-of-a-kind products to give away during the holiday season. Each year in November and December a market is held in the center of the District of Columbia where local establishments have the opportunity to meet in the same space to offer their products.
The Downtown Holiday Market, presented by the DowntownDC Business Improvement District (BID), Diverse Markets Management, and Washington’s official sports and convention authority, Events DC, returns to the nation’s capital bigger than ever and with new security protocols and Health. Downtown DC’s spacious outdoor market recently opened, and will remain open through Wednesday, December 23, filling two entire blocks of F Street NW, from 7th to 9th streets NW.
Admission to the Downtown Holiday Market is free and open to the public from 12:00 pm to 8:00 pm. Downtown Holiday Market is closed Monday, November 30, December 7, and 14.
As always, visitors can expect a variety of family-friendly offerings including emerging artisan wares, returning favorite vendor stores, festive lights and decor, authentic European treats and local snacks; plus virtual programming for five weeks. Visitors can purchase gift certificates online in advance, redeemable at the marketplace.
“Despite the challenges this year, we are determined to continue our Christmas tradition by introducing local small business buyers in need of support. Artists and artisans from our region add vitality to the DC community and, especially this year, I am delighted to welcome visitors to the market, ”said Neil Albert, president and CEO of DowntownDC BID.
“Visitors can expect a safe and socially distanced market this year. We cultivate a strong community of entrepreneurs and small business owners who play an important role in helping our city recover and we are very grateful to close the year with this positive event. “
This year, additions to the market include an exciting mix of interactive digital experiences, including a projection show by artist Zak Forrest titled “Chroma” screened at the National Portrait Gallery. ARTECHOUSE presents a one-of-a-kind mixed reality (XR) adventure across the market, using smartphone technology and the museum’s XR app to reveal “instagrammable” surprises around the market. Additionally, buyers will be greeted with a jumbotron screen that will broadcast curated performances and entertainment in real time.
“We are very excited to bring the Downtown Holiday Market back this year.
As we approach the holidays, visitors can travel through our reinvented market space, filled with the holiday spirit and a variety of virtual experiences that make it exciting for all ages, ”said Michael Berman, President of Diverse Markets Management. “Thanks to our partners and help from the city, we can still spread the joy, all while practicing social distancing and security measures for our buyers.”
While the market has expanded its presence to allow for more spaced out stores, visitors can still enjoy various local gifts from more than 70 vendors in a welcoming environment, show support, and make unique purchases. Get ready to enjoy delicious traditional cinnamon-dusted churros and hot donuts, along with new food and beverage vendors like Taste of Germany, Alexa’s Empanadas, Old Blue BBQ, The Capital Candy Jar, Bindaas, and Migue’s Magnificent Mini Donuts.
TO TAKE INTO ACCOUNT
More space: The market has rethought the layout of the stalls to allow spacious aisles around the tents of street retailers.
Traffic management: To offer independent entry and exit points, streamlining one-way pedestrian traffic flow and limited capacity in the market area.
Required face masks and improved cleansing: Proper use of face masks or other personal protective equipment (PPE) is required while shopping on market grounds and high-touch surfaces are disinfected throughout the day.
“Made in DC” Pop-Up: Visitors can explore a variety of collectibles from the best artisans in the city. You will be able to purchase “Made in DC” certified items that include art, toys and more.
The Fashion District: Downtown DC BID’s premier fashion program is launching an outdoor boutique for the first time. Visitors can find garments from Shari Henri, Abram’s Wearable, Andrew Nowell, Shafei Han, and eclectic selections from Ida’s Idea.