Despite a snowy morning Nov. 25, people gathered in the Enchanted Hills plaza area to support small businesses during the Small Business Saturday Holiday Market event.
The event was put on by the Rio Rancho Regional Chamber of Commerce and included music from KDSK Radio 92.9, free pictures from Magic Mirror Photobooth NM, multiple local vendors selling unique holiday products and free hot cocoa.
“We came in at like 9:30ish, and we are here serving hot chocolate and it’s free. You cannot be at a holiday market without hot chocolate,” said Lilllie Parrott, a Girl Scout from Troop 242.
Parrott and other members from the Girl Scouts of New Mexico volunteered to serve hot chocolate, and all hot chocolate items were donated.
Santa Claus was also in attendance.
“I came all the way from the North Pole just to support my friends and families here in Rio Rancho, and I brought the snow with me!” said Santa Claus.
Claus was in attendance to take pictures with families and show his support for small businesses and all of their unique goods.
“I have gnome-nanents (gnomes as ornaments), gnome-tivities. I also sell everyday gnomes; I have all different kinds of things, you just have to come and see me,” said Becky Green, owner of Chubbyclosets. “I was out of a job, needed Christmas presents, started making them, a friend started buying them from me and somebody said you need to go to shows … and here I am five years later!”
Many vendors, like Chubbyclosets, enjoy these events because it gives them a chance to meet other vendors and become more entwined with the community.
“We have very talented artists and crafts people here, and the lady next door to me makes soap … we have all kinds of things here,” said Diane Reuler, owner of YarnArt by Diane.
Reuler has been a vendor at the Holiday Market for more than six years. All proceeds made by Reuler go directly to performing arts organizations.
“Come on out, find us, and see what we do because I can guarantee you will not find it elsewhere,” Reuler said.