AUBURN — Preparations are well underway for the 38th annual Christmas by the Lake fair at St. Philip’s Church, Immaculate Heart of Mary Parish. The popular event will take place on Saturday, Nov. 17, from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Additional shopping hours are available on Sunday morning, Nov. 18, from 9 a.m. to noon, but the best selection, of course, is on Saturday.

Recognized as the premier fair in this area, the event offers quality home-crafted items in a variety of booths, including wreaths, candy, country cupboard, patchwork, knits, arts and crafts, woodworking and bakery. In addition, shoppers are sure to find bargains at the jewelry table and the several “hidden treasure” rooms. This year, a substantial number of holiday ceramic articles have been received for the fair inventory. Shoppers will also want to check out the variety of themed gift baskets that will be for sale. The lunch counter will be open for business, and baked beans will be available for takeout or for eating on site.

Some very nice donations are coming in for the Silent Auction room, among them an antique rocker with upholstered seat; a Tiffany-style table lamp; a 6-inch Pandigital eReader; several collectibles (Byer’s Choice, Dept. 56, Tom Clark, Blue Sky, Sarah’s Attic and Daddy’s Long Legs); and a hand-knit Martha Washington afghan. Bidding will close 10 minutes prior to the end of the fair activities on Saturday. Winning bidders will be contacted by phone to pick up their items on Sunday morning if at all possible.

Several booths will have a special item being offered for raffle, and tickets will be sold as well for the large raffle. First prize is $750, second is a king-sized quilt and third is $250. Tickets are $1 each or six for $5 and are available from IHM parishioners or at the fair. You do not need to be present to win.

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