Tricentennial Bazaar at Parish Church of St. Helena returns to its early traditions

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Handmade Christmas decorations, gifts and foods will be spotlighted at this year’s Fall Bazaar presented by the Women of the Parish Church of St. Helena in Beaufort.

“We want to return to our roots with this Bazaar, to honor our church’s 300 years of history,” says Martha Scott, who is co-chairing the event with Betty Ann Allison and Teresa Roundy.

This year’s Fall Bazaar co-chairs at the Parish Church of St. Helena are, from left, Betty Ann Allison, Martha Scott and Teresa Roundy. They’re pictured in the Parish House crafts closet at the downtown church complex.

The bazaar, which benefits the church’s outreach efforts in Beaufort and around the world, will continue its now-famous silent auction of more than 300 unique items ranging from excursions and restaurant dinners to fine art and furs, sailboats and furniture.

Even St. Helena’s famous handmade chorister “church mice” will revisit their past.  “We are bringing back all the ‘special’ mice we’ve created over the years,” Scott said.  If anyone missed the conductor, the bishop, the crucifer or any of the others, they can complete their collection this year.  Also returning are mice tucked into sardine-can “beds” — “not a creature was stirring, not even a mouse,” Scott reminded with a smile.

The 2012 mouse will be unveiled at the bazaar preview, but it’s extra-special this year to honor the church’s history.

This bazaar will be open on Saturday, Nov. 3, from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. in the Parish House at 507 Newcastle St. in Beaufort.  A Bazaar Preview will be held Friday, Nov. 2, from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m.  Nothing is sold on Friday (although Silent Auction bids are accepted). The preview is for fellowship and an early look at bazaar offerings.

Women of St. Helena’s will gather at the church and in their homes to plan projects and create crafts, aiming for a sizable inventory of Christmas wreaths and ornaments as well as gift items including rice “pillows” for sore muscles, mug rugs, hanger covers and utility bags.  “Casserole days” will produce homemade dinners to be packaged and frozen for purchase at the Bazaar, including some recipes from local caterer and St. Helena parishioner Debbi Covington’s recently released cookbook, “Celebrate! Everything.”

“Creating these items with love, together, provides a wonderful opportunity for fellowship with other women as well as producing beautiful things to sell,” Scott said.

Bazaar shoppers will find the Parish House courtyard filled with plants and shrubs.  Other features will include baked goods, candy, linens, books, jewelry, a pet boutique and the Bargain Box for gently used items.

Contact the church office at 843-522-1712 for more information. Or visit www.sthelenas1712.org.