Area residents got a jump-start on their Christmas shopping Saturday as they flocked to the 37th Annual Fort Hood Spouses’ Club Holiday Bazaar, held at the Killeen Civic and Conference Center.
More than 125 vendors filled the banquet hall with a variety of gift items, such as wreaths, ornaments, hand-made home décor, clothing, knives, art pieces, jewelry, quilts and beauty products.
Food trucks like Sporty Dogs, Lil’ Orbits Mini Fried Donuts, Island Grill, Cheesy Buns and Potato Wagon were amongst the present food trucks providing fare for attendees.
Many bazaar vendors are military veterans.
“What’s nice is that a lot of our vendors have been with us for years, also. So you get to see them again and it’s a nice start — I see a lot of people that I know come in as customers — and it’s just a nice kick off to the holiday season,” said Stacy Clady, bazaar chair. “So you get to go do your shopping and have wonderful gifts and everything, while at the same time, your money is going back to the support the military community.”
Every year, the Fort Hood Spouses’ Club uses the bazaar to hold a holiday event for the community and to raise money. This year proceeds from the Holiday Bazaar will be used for the club’s community outreach grant program.
The past several years about $50,000 in grant awards were awarded annually, Clady said.
As an added bonus, Immanuel Lutheran Church of Killeen provided free gift wrapping for bazaar attendees. A food donation collection for local food banks, face painting, cookie decorating, Santa pictures, and a raffle were also held.
The club has provided assistance to the Fort Hood Area Military Family Member Scholarship Fund, Santa’s Workshop, Cove House, the Special Olympics, Families In Crisis, the Fort Hood Volunteer Child Care Fund, United Services Organization (USO), Fort Hood Layette programs, and more. Food and item donations are collected for special projects.
The bazaar will continue from noon to 5 p.m. today. Admission is $6 at the door and free for kids 12 and under.
For tickets, volunteer and vendor opportunities please contact Clady, through email at FHSC.Bazaar.Chair@gmail.com or visit www.forthoodspousesclub.org. Membership is open to everyone — not just active duty military spouses.
Interested vendors should get in touch early, as spots are reserved as early as March.
Organizations interested in receiving grants can apply on the club’s website.