Are you ready to kick the holiday shopping season into high gear? If so, you definitely need Gatlinburg’s Craftsman Fair in your life. Back again from October 13th through the 30th, this popular event offers seemingly endless handcrafted goods, live music performances, and so much more. You just have to swing by the Gatlinburg Convention Center any time between 10 am and 5 pm to get in on the fun. Ready to see just what awaits your arrival in 2022? Here’s a look at all you need to know.
Get a Multi-Day Pass to Avoid Missing Out on All the Fun
Now in its 47th year, Gatlinburg’s Craftsman Fair is bigger and better than ever before. More than 200 talented artisans and craftsmen plan to set up shop at the convention center this year. They’re arriving from all over the United States, too, so you never truly know what you’ll find on your shopping adventures. One thing you can count on, however, is every last item will be as good as the last.
To ensure you have enough time to fully explore every booth, you’ll want to sign up for the multi-day pass. Oftentimes, it takes the entire day just to explore the vendor booths, much less enjoy all the other activities onsite. By planning to attend several days in a row, you’ll have even more time for the craftsman demos, live music performances, and tasty concessions.
If you want to get the multi-day pass, you have to first pay for admission on your first visit. Remember to bring cash because they do not take credit or debit card payments for tickets. Then, show your photo ID at the office on Aisle 500 to get the upgrade before leaving for the day. As you do that, keep in mind that kids aged 17 and under always get free admission when arriving with a paying adult.
Shop for One-of-a-Kind Handmade Goods from Local Artisans
Since the organizers want only one-of-a-kind, handmade works, not just anyone can set up shop at the fair. All vendors must pass a rigorous vetting process well ahead of time to qualify. During that process, they must prove their items are all made by hand and 100% unique without any duplicates on the market. Beyond that, they must only offer the highest quality products to all the attendees.
So, as you shop around, you can rest assured that you are seeing the best of the best from all over the US. Every category of artisan goods remains well represented year after year, too, including:
- Wood carvings
- Molded leather
- Copper art
You can even find handcrafted candy and other goodies for sale on the regular. You just need to keep your head up and your eyes peeled for the best finds to check everything off your holiday shopping list.
Unlike at the ticket booth, the vendors often take credit and debit cards as payment. Just to be safe, plan to take out a little extra cash just in case an artisan is not set up for cards. There is an ATM onsite, but it would be sad to see your beloved item gone once you got back from grabbing your money.
Watch Awe-Inspiring Demonstrations by Talented Craftsmen
Have you ever wondered just how your favorite handcrafted products were made? The craftsman fair offers a chance to satisfy your curiosity once and for all. Many artisans set up their booths with live demonstration areas, and then put on a show several times a day. As they sit down and start working on their project, you can watch in awe at their creation process and even ask questions.
If you’re really lucky, they’ll finish the piece while you’re there, and then promptly put it up for sale. You can then walk away with a riveting tale to go with the beautiful item you bought, adding even more value to the gift-giving experience.
Catch Performances by Bluegrass, Country, and Gospel Musicians
Included in your admission are daily music performances from the top bluegrass, country, and gospel musicians. These performers come from all over the Gatlinburg region and beyond to delight the crowds with their tunes.
You’ll need to find the stage by noon each day to catch the entire show. After that, stick around until 3 pm to hear all the songs they plan to play. There will be room to kick back and relax if you wish. Or you can find an open spot to dance your heart out until you’re too tired to go on. Then, come back the next day to do it all over again.
Fuel Up for the Fun and Excitement at the Concession Stands
In between all the shopping, dancing, and other fun activities, set your sights on the nearby concession stands. Restaurant vendors from all over the region come to the convention center to sell their most popular food and drinks.
If you don’t want to end up missing out on something truly scrumptious, make a lap around all the concession stands before deciding just what to get. Once you have a plan, you’ll be able to satisfy all your cravings each day.
Plan to Visit the Gatlinburg’s Craftsman Fair Again in July
Gatlinburg’s Craftsman Fair arrives in town twice a year, so put their July event on your calendar as well. With that move, you can shop your heart out for the holidays. Then, repeat the experience just as soon as summer hits full swing. You’re bound to find something new at every visit, too, making it well worth coming down whenever the convention center festivities start in earnest.