A local alternative to Black Friday

Jimmy Tickey, one of three founders of Celebrate Shelton, helped facilitate the 'Plaid Friday' handmade market that took place on Black Friday.
Jimmy Tickey, one of three founders of Celebrate Shelton, helped facilitate the ‘Plaid Friday’ handmade market that took place on Black Friday.

‘Plaid Friday’


With more than 40 vendors set up and many people coming in to do some holiday shopping, Celebrate Shelton’s “Plaid Friday” handmade market proved to be a success.

The market was organized by Celebrate Shelton, a citywide initiative that works with local businesses and organizations within the community.

“This was really created by the small business community, not ‘Black Friday or anything related to the larger chains or stores. It’s all about buying local and supporting our local artisans,” said Jimmy Tickey, one of the three founders of Celebrate Shelton.

With items ranging from homemade barbecue sauces and pies to artwork and photographs, all the way to products made from beehive products, the handmade market’s new and returning vendors aim to provide locals with a variety of quality items they no longer have to purchase at a big business.

“There’s just something special about buying something from a local small business, because not only are they part of our local economy and you are supporting them, but also then giving a gift that is unique and personal,” said Tickey.

Celebrate Shelton has several other events planned for the holiday season. On Friday, Dec. 4, at 5:30 p.m the organization will be holding its second annual Community Tree Lighting at Veterans Memorial Park. The event will feature a performance by Center Stage as well as a special appearance by Santa.

Families are encouraged  to bring their own ornament to help decorate the tree. The Boys & Girls Club of Lower Naugatuck Valley will be selling hot cocoa and baked goods. All proceeds will go directly to the club. The event is sponsored by city of Shelton, Valley Community Foundation, Center Stage Theatre, and Jones Family Farms.

On Dec. 5, 12 and 19 from 10 to 3, Celebrate Shelton will also be holding its holiday handmade markets, which will feature more than 75 handmade artisan vendors. Each week will feature different vendors.