Shared from the 11/16/2019 New Bern Sun Journal eEdition

Spend your holiday money in New Bern

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The New Bern Farmers Market is a treasure-trove for exciting and unique gift ideas! [CONTRIBUTED PHOTO]

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Judi Lloyd

Iwant to encourage you (yet again) to do as much local shopping as possible. Remember, many of these businesses are just getting back on their feet after last year’s hurricane and the loss of the Convention Center & Hilton. So they can definitely use our support more than ever! Think of businesses that are owned by residents of New Bern, not large box stores and chain restaurants! We have a plethora of wonderful shops both downtown and in strip shopping centers. New Bern is jam-packed with shops where you can purchase unique gifts for friends and family.

Shopping locally increases the odds of giving a gift that won’t be duplicated. Also, when you buy something from a small local business owned by a self-employed person like a craftsperson who makes jewelry or pottery (there are many excellent ones at the Farmers Market), plants or flowers from a nursery, local bakers with homemade cakes or chocolates, you will ensure that more local folks will have a better Christmas too. In fact, the Farmers Market is marketing their Tuesday and Saturday openings in December as “Handmade Holidays”. It’s an awesome way to show community support.

So, hit the downtown streets and check them out for yourself. Plus, think how much cheerier it is running into friends and neighbors as we shop, not to mention the stops for sustenance (food and wine) along the way!

And, Christmas gifts do not always have to be “things”. They can be tickets to one of our terrific plays at New Bern Civic Theatre or Rivertowne Players or gift cards to one of our many scrumptious restaurants. People truly appreciate “gifts” that make their lives easier: credit for a car wash, lawn service or pet sitter while they are away.

Don’t forget that the Craven County Extension Master Gardener Volunteers (Cravenmastergardener.org) are having their fall bulb sale, so purchasing bulbs will bring a smile to the recipient’s face next spring or forcing an amaryllis to bloom during the dead of winter.

Donate to one of our many local charities (Habitat for Humanity, RCS, Colonial Capitol Humane Society, Twin Rivers YMCA) in someone’s name. They don’t even have to know the amount you donated if you don’t want them to – it can simply say “a generous donation was made in your name”.

Re-gifting is not a bad thing! Save the gifts that are not quite your taste and give them to someone will think they are just perfect for them!

The best gifts come from the heart and hands, particularly for the folks on your list where shopping ideas are a bit difficult. So, try to make any presents that we do purchase from entrepreneurs in our community!

I hope to see many of you while shopping or dining between now and year’s end!

Judi Lloyd lives in River Bend and can be contacted at judilloyd@yahoo.com

See this article in the e-Edition Here