Locally owned retail shops and restaurants in Canal Winchester have come together for a special holiday shopping event they hope will make the city a shopping destination.
Moonlight Market takes place from 5-9 p.m., Thursday, Nov. 29, at all of Canal Winchester Local Merchants Guild member businesses. Currently, those businesses include: C'est Si Bon, Civetta, Corner Smiths, Dragonfly Gift & Candle, Fantasy Cupcake, Georgie Emerson Vintage, Handworks on High, Hannahgrace's Doll House, Paradise FroYo, Shaw and Son's Jewelers, Studio 7.5 and The Wigwam.
"The guild is a loose organization of mostly retail merchants in town," Dragonfly owner Josh Schooley said. "Canal Winchester has undergone a revitalization of sorts with a whole lot of new retail businesses, so we decided to form this group and our first act is to host the Moonlight Market."
Market shoppers will receive a punch card and as they visit the stores that evening, they will get their cards punched, which can then be entered into a raffle. The winner will receive a gift basket with items from each of the participating businesses.
"There will be specials on certain items as well and several of the businesses will have local artists demonstrating their craft, along with a limited number of their own items on sale," Schooley said. "The whole point is to bring people into town and to build Canal Winchester up as a shopping destination, the kind of place where people will come and spend a whole Saturday here."
Schooley compared this first event to other communities that have similar First Friday-type events. According to him, the guild is still a very casual organization but he hopes it will get to the point of hosting regular monthly meetings and events.
"We've gotten a lot of support from Destination: Canal Winchester and we're trying to fill in a space that isn't specifically in their mission or in the chamber's mission," Schooley said.
He said he believes the groups are a valuable complement to one another.
The Canal Winchester Local Merchants Guild is looking for more participants as it continues to organize.
More information about the Guild or about the Moonlight Market is available at facebook. com/CanalWinchesterLocalMerchantsGuild.