Band hosts annual craft fair

242 vendors filling 364 booths came to OHS the weekend of Dec. 3-4 for the 36th annual craft show sponsored by the Band Parents Association in the school’s band program. The craft show consisted of crafters selling everything from metal wooden statues to carved soap and assorted chocolates.

The booths occupied the whole main floor of the high school building, including both gyms, the commons, the lobby, and the cafeteria. Such a variety of vendors so close to the holidays generates a large crowd and parking traffic.

“Previous years we have had vendors pay for parking or had them park at OES or OMS and paid for a shuttle to bring them over but because we have the 70 new spots on the lower lot now, it made it more convenient,” Mr. Vance Brakefield, band program coordinator and instructor, said.

Each booth starts at $60 for the vendor and it goes up depending on what other needs they need for their display such as water or electricity. For one local crafter, Donna Knapp, owner of 519 on S. Maine, the OHS craft fair is one of two shows she attends a year and she appreciates the opportunity.

“We’ve been coming here for a couple of years; a couple of our friends went to high school here so we did have a connection. And we knew it was a large gathering, we love it,” Knapp said.

She also shows her appreciation for the band program that puts together the event.

“The best about your craft fair is that you have so many helpers that it’s like nothing else. Some places you have to unload everything,” Knapp said.

Knapp was not the only vendor to have a previous connection with OHS and the craft fair. Lisa Kelly, the author of a Notre Dame football book series, has a daughter who attends OHS, Caitlin Kelly (11), as well as many of the shoppers who knew about the event by living in the area.

“We have been coming for years. We live in the neighborhood in have known about this event for a while,” one customer said.

She also mentions that she saw a lot of helpers walking around to the booths. The band program organizes the fundraiser thanks to parents and students in the band program. The event is the biggest fundraiser for the program the whole year. After all expenses are paid, the band program brings in $20,000 from the event.

Jakob Geldmacher (10), second year band participant, is impressed by the turnout even though he says it can get a little cluttered.

“Each band member that works here gets $25 put into their bank account which goes towards the spring trips or whatever other trips we have to do, new instruments, new pieces for our instruments and it’s always a lot of fun to work,” Geldmacher said.

This OHS hosted event not only brings notice to many local crafters, but also brings the community together to help the band program and their goals.