Downtown Venice: “Christmas in July”
By Maria Baskin
Don’t panic! Don’t wrack you brains out because you don’t know what to get for the kids or your husband or the friend who has everything for Christmas. Come to Downtown Venice on Friday and Saturday,
July 21-22 from 10:00am-5:00pm where you can experience stress-free shopping in the true spirit of Christmas. It will be a fun event with gifts, a raffle, decorations, and new stores, on all the avenues and some of the alleys in between!
We all remember the Christmas decorations, the lights, the ornaments and the Christmas villages. Many of Venice’s finest stores will help to get you in to the spirit with all the Christmas trappings including delectable goodies. When we think of each Christmas past, most of us remember the last minute shopping, stores running out of items, the long lines at the registers, and the mountains of gift wrapping. Where does all the Christmas “spirit” go? The downtown Venice two-day Christmas in July event will put the “Merry-ment” back into your Christmas shopping adventure. The local vendors of the avenues will offer special discounts storewide or on selected items, and some will remain open later on the Friday, the 21st. At 10am on Saturday, the 22nd, Santa will join the Venice Fire Department for a ride on Venice’s newest fire truck around the Avenues, starting at the West end of the Venice Farmer’s Market.
There will be festivities to enjoy all over Venice. Paris Hair Design Salon in the KMI Building on Tampa Avenue will host a party, complete with door prizes, from 2pm to 7pm on Friday the 21st, with music, appetizers, alcoholic and non-alcoholic beverages. Be sure to make Mother’s Cupboard Spice Shoppe on Miami a must-stop on your journey. This unique nook offers all kinds of tips to spice-up a meal or pick up a new kitchen utensil that you didn’t even know you needed. Plus, you have to pop in for a free chocolate chip cookie. Stop by Elephants Trunk at 595 South Tamiami Trail for more great deals, kids’ activities, a bake sale, popcorn, hotdogs, and more! And don’t forget to give the Gift of Life at the available Blood Mobile.
There will be a raffle give-a-way of 4 gift baskets, full of donated items from the downtown businesses worth a total of $1,000 – shoes, Champagne, jewelry, clothing, gift certificates and much more. Bring the children to meet Santa & Mrs. Claus from 11:00am-4:00pm and then ride the trolley that will drop you off at any stop along any of the Avenues – West Venice, Tampa and Miami.
Get a jump on your holiday gift giving and make a day of shopping and dining in Downtown Venice. Browse the shops and collect those really cool ideas for those on your nice list. Items will pop out at you as you think out loud, “That would be great for Dad.” Or, “Wow, that is perfect for my sister.” And you can’t help but add a little something for yourself to your shopping bags.
Forget your stresses and get in the spirit at the Downtown Venice “Christmas in July” event. You can catch Santa and Mrs. Claus on Friday, July 21 at Café Venice on West Venice Avenue at noontime or on Saturday, July 22 at Abby’s restaurant on Miami Avenue at noontime.
Pick up your “free” raffle tickets at many of the downtown businesses. The raffle will be done on Tuesday, July 25th, and winners will be contacted. Ride the Trolley on both days from 11am to 4pm. Thank you to the merchants of Miami Avenue and the Venice Gondolier Sun for sponsoring the trolley!
Visit the many participating businesses to find great shopping and get in the holiday spirit: Aura Organic Spa + Wellness, B&B Bootery, Café Venice, Captain’s Landing, Celebration Corner, Ciao Gelato, Cleopatra’s Bath & Body, Coldwell Banker, Collector’s Gallery & Framery, Croissant & Company, DanaTyler, Dick’s Shoes, Down Island Way Boutique, DP Fitness & Wellness, Earth Treasures, Elephant’s Trunk, ERA Preferred Properties of Venice Lauren Meadows, Eyes On You, Florida Olive Oil Company, Fraser’s Island Gift Nook, Island Life Hammock Company, La Bella Interiors, Lisa’s Classic Rose, Lueanne Wood, P.A., Made in Italy, Mother’s Cupboard Spice Shoppe, Mrs. Candlewick’s Shoppe, Nana’s A Children’s Shop, Puttin’ on the Ritz, Sandy’s Designer Clothing, Scarlet Macaw Resort Wear, Seaside Chic Boutique, Sunbug, Tangi & Jess, Tarpon Bay Trading Company, The Tabletop, Treasures in Time, Venice in Vogue, Venice Olive Oil Company, Venice Stationers, Venice Trading Company, Venice Wine & Coffee, Wish On the Island