Mary Stephens, June Wisdom bag apple butter circa 2011

SUMC apple butter is one of the most sought after items at the annual bazaar.

November brings joy to many people through various events. Whether it be deer season or turkey or ham dinners and all the trimmings, there are countless traditions in our area.

For many, one of those is the first weekend of November craft sales and bazaars. The annual sales mark the beginning of the holiday shopping season for hundreds of shoppers. The churches are just down the road from each other on Scenic Rivers Blvd. (Highway 32), so there is time to stop at both.

Salem Lutheran Church

403 E. Scenic Rivers Blvd.

The Lutheran Ladies Aid group, organize the annual sale at Salem Lutheran Church. The sale is sponsored by the Salem Lutheran Ladies’ Aid, and is held from 9 a.m. until 2 p.m. The group currently has about a dozen members. The whole church family assists in some way with the event, whether donating items to sell, setting up tables or being present the day of the sale. It is a group effort, say organizers.

“We don’t get together and do projects, so we aren’t sure what all may come in until the day of,” said member Mary Behnken.

Some of the items that are available this year include handmade baby blankets, bath salts,

cinnamon rolls, cookies, danishes, Christmas ornaments, kettle corn, canned items like jams and jellies, homemade bread and other baked items, homemade salsa, ready to go soup mixes, crafts, and wreaths.

Proceeds benefit local charities.

Salem United Methodist Church

801 E. Scenic Rivers Blvd.

Salem United Methodist Church Christmas Bazaar is also being held 9 a.m.-2 pm. Saturday.

The Salem United Methodist Church will have many items, including snowmen and Santas, wreaths, plants and more. A booth for pre-owned Christmas decorations is also available.

Other items include hats, scarves, woodworking, a large ornament selection and nativity scenes.

In addition, various canned and baked goods will be available. The annual bazaar is famous for its homemade apple butter, of which about 600 pints are available, including sugar free. Since the 1970s, the Salem United Methodist Church has been making apple butter to help fund church mission projects.

The Cinnamon Café will be available from 9 a.m. until 12 p.m. featuring fresh cinnamon rolls and pastries, coffee and beverages.

Every year there is an amazing turnout and people are lined up early to get in the door, according to Jann Craig, a bazaar volunteer for over 30 years.

Proceeds from the Methodist bazaar go toward many local and mission projects, including the Lifeway Center (Shepherd’s Nook), LovePack Backpack Program, Our Savior Lutheran Church Soup Kitchen, benevolence fund projects at all local schools, Bonebrake Center of Nature and History, Russell House, the Dent County Animal Shelter, Head Start, Epworth Children’s Home, Campus Crusade For Christ and other scholarships and causes.