Island holiday shopping at church
The Episcopal Church of the Annunciation will hold its Holly Berry Christmas Bazaar and fresh market on Saturday, Dec. 3, from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. at 4408 Gulf Drive, Holmes Beach.
This year members will sell their famous homemade pickles and original chicken pot pies after finding out last year that turkey pot pies weren’t as popular. This year, they will be selling frozen prepared meals, homemade dinners to go. There will be a cake walk and holiday pies for sale in two sizes.
This annual sale offers holiday gifts and decorations, gently used items and food for the dinner table, late night snacks and holiday entertaining.
For those who don’t want unwanted gifts to go to waste, they will have a Santa Returns area for regifting and cosmetics bags, pot holders, plants and floral arrangements. Enjoy lunch with offerings from the church kitchen.
Admission is free, and there are two parking lots, or you can take the trolley.
Bay Wise tours are back
The Sarasota Bay Estuary Program presents a bay wise kayak tour of Neal Preserve, 12301 Manatee Ave. W., Saturday, Dec. 3, from 9 a.m. to noon to kick off the 2016-17 season.
Professional Guide Brad Tanner leads these educational tours. Participants must bring their own kayaks, paddles and tours. To register for the tour, contact Darcy Young at 941-955-8085.
Parade deadline nears
Those wantng to be in the Anna Maria Island Privateers Annual Christmas parade need to get registered. The parade is on Saturday, Dec. 10, starting at 10 a.m. at Bayfront Park and ending at Coquina Beach where Santa will listen to kids’ requests and hand out presents
Get an application online at www.amiprivateers.org. For more information, call Big John “Capt. Red Beard” Swager at 941-900-4141
Santa comes to the mainland
The Manatee County Parks and Natural Resources Department presents a Night Before Christmas event at GT Bray Park on Saturday, Dec. 3, from 4 to7:30 p.m. Santa will fly in by helicopter to meet with all the children, whether naughty or nice. The event includes face painting, bounce house, snow, hayrides, and much more.
Families that complete Santa’s passport will be entered to win a gift certificate, too. Wristbands for this event are $5 for children and that includes unlimited participation in all activities. Parental participation is free. Food will be available at an additional cost.
Libraries hold writing contest
The Manatee County Library System is looking for a writer who wants to listen to a noted author speak.
To enter, a prospective writer must be 16 years old and submit a flash fiction story, 500 words or less, based on a relationship of any kind. The winner will receive a ticket to “An Evening with Nicholas Sparks” at the Manatee Library Foundations annual author event on Tuesday, Feb. 7, at 7 p.m. at SFC’s Neel Performing Arts Center. The winning entry will also be published in the upcoming edition of “805 Lit + Art Journal.”
A panel of library professionals and 805 Journal editors will judge the entries. The deadline for entries is Friday, Dec. 2. For complete rules, go to 805lit.org. Entries may be submitted in person to any of the six Manatee Public Libraries, by e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org or mail to Flash Fiction Contest Committee, Manatee Public Library Library System, 1301 Barcarrota Blvd., Bradenton, FL 34205.
Selections will be announced on Friday, Dec, 16. For more information, contact Kelly Foster at 941-748-5555, ext. 6307.
Christmas music in Bradenton
The Bay Chorale performs a concert of Christmas and holiday favorites on Sunday, Dec, 4, at 4 p.m. at Need Performing Arts Center, 5840 26th St. W., Bradenton. Tickets are $15 and will be available at the door. For information on advance purchase tickets, call 941-753-5634.
Music on the beach
Enjoy Jam in the Sand on Thursdays at the Anna Maria Island Beach Café, 4000 Gulf Dr, Holmes Beach, from 5 to 8 p.m. It’s free, and it’s fun. Enjoy dinner while you listen.