With the glistening snow, cinnamon-scented candles, and pumpkin spice lattes, Westford residents know that the Holiday Bazaar is near.
Last year, due to the COVID-19 pandemic, STUCO was unable to hold its annual Holiday Bazaar. However, this year, WA’s halls will be filled with cheer during the Bazaar on Saturday, Dec. 4 from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m..
“We’re [STUCO] really excited for the bazaar because it’s probably our main event and we do it every year […]. We usually stay really late at night the night before and it’s a great team bonding experience too,” STUCO President Lizzy Durgin said.
Due to social distancing restrictions, the holiday bazaar will be held differently than in years past. This year, vendors will be spread through the entirety of the first floor of the school ranging from the bell lobby all the way to the foreign language wing. Co-Chairs of STUCO’s Holiday Bazaar Committee Alex Ryan and Hannah Macey anticipate that there will be around 1,000 shoppers and approximately 175 vendors at the bazaar this year.
“Besides the layout of the event, mostly everything will be the same about the event. There will be around the same amount of vendors, hopefully, the same amount of visitors and the atmosphere of it all will be the same. We have around 170 vendors and expect to have around 1,000 shoppers.” Ryan said.
Furthermore, there will only be one-way hallways and only half of the gym will be used to hold additional vendors.
Visitors will be allowed to park in the front of the school, the teacher lot, and the student parking lot, and will enter through the bell lobby and exit the school through the senior lobby. There will also be a $2 general admission fee for all visitors (students, families, and any guests) after entering the building.
“I’m stoked that we’re going to be able to have a big event […] and we really haven’t had too many town-wide events this year due to COVID,” Macey said.
In addition to the new layout, the Holiday Bazaar Committee is also being overseen by new adviser Danielle Mendonca, a 2017 WA alum and current WA Athletic Administrative Assistant. During her junior year at WA, Mendonca was also Co-Chair of STUCO’s Holiday Bazaar committee.
“This is my first year helping out STUCO as the Holiday Bazaar advisor and I’m really happy to be back,” Mendonca said. “Unfortunately, we [STUCO] didn’t absolutely know that we were going to be holding the bazaar, so things were a bit rushed when it was confirmed. It was like a whole year worth of work planned in a couple of months but all the members are doing a great job.”
Despite regulations due to the pandemic, vendors and community members are excited about the event. Vendors this year will primarily stay the same as prior years, consisting of local small businesses and WA clubs and organizations such as student governments representing their class.
“The bazaar is such a huge event with so many different vendors and I’m really excited that the Class of ‘24 will finally get the chance to go to one of the major high school events WA has to offer […]. This event not only brings the classes together but is a great town-wide event,” Class of 2024 President Josh Lawrence said.
Additionally, the holiday bazaar is a place where smaller vendors thrive. With the opportunity for the Westford community to come all together in one place, local businesses are excited to be back in WA to show off and sell homemade goods like socks, sweaters, jewelry, and desserts.
Overall, STUCO members can’t wait until the main entrance doors open.
“I’m so grateful that we are able to hold the Holiday Bazaar this year just because it’s one of my favorite parts of the holiday season at school and showcases a variety of town-wide talents and residents are able to support local businesses and student clubs. I hope everyone is able to come and find something they can enjoy because there really is something for everyone,” Ryan said.