Shoppers Visit Essentia Health For Annual Holiday Bazaar
The hospital isn’t a place people usually associate shopping with, but in Brainerd, many community members were checking gifts off their list at Essentia Health’s Holiday Bazaar.
“It’s changed over the years, but right now, different crafters come in and sell their wares,” Deb Anderson, a volunteer supervisor, said. “They pay for a booth, and then they get to sell their wares, and everybody else gets to know what’s going on.”
The Holiday Bazaar has been going on for roughly 50 years, and when it first started, members of Essentia Health’s Auxiliary would make their own crafts and sell them, but now, vendors buy space to sell their items.
“I’ve seen this quite a few times, and I came into the hospital and saw the poster, and I thought I would really like to be a part of that,” Carrie Espeseth, a vendor with Color Street Nails, said. “I was very blessed that they let me come in.”
Men and women of the auxiliary were also busy making cookies for the event’s annual cookie walk.
“We have a huge cookie walk – our volunteers provide all of our cookies,” Donna Wheeler, Essentia Health’s Auxiliary President, said. “We had at least 3,500 cookies, and we were swamped at first, but it’s quieting down a little.”
The event is one of the biggest fundraisers of the year for Essentia Health, with all the proceeds supporting the auxiliary which purchases equipment for the hospital. Last year, the Holiday Bazaar raised approximately $10,000 for Essentia Health.