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Part of South Washington to close today and tomorrow for Merry Market

Blood drive for local teen set for holiday craft fair by Tia Lyons | December 3, 2021 at 12:00 a.m.
A blood drive will be held at the Merry Market this weekend to benefit Marie Reynolds, 15, of Norphlet, who has a rare blood disorder. (Contributed)

South Washington Avenue between Main and Elm streets will be closed to traffic today and Saturday for the Merry Market, Main Street El Dorado announced.

The event is set for 10 a.m. until 5 p.m. Saturday and will offer a wide variety of jewelry, clothing, seasonal items, children's books, holiday treats, handmade crafts and more for sale by temporary vendors, pop-up shops and downtown merchants.

Beth Brumley, executive director of MSE, said the section of Washington Avenue between Main and Elm will be blocked today as vendors begin setting up for the event.

Admission for the Merry Market is $5.

The price of admission comes with a canvas tote bag; entry into the hospitality tent, which will include food and will be heated; a ticket for door-prize drawings that will be held throughout the day; and a "passport" to be stamped by downtown businesses and Merry Market vendors upon making purchases.

Passports will be entered into a Grand Prize drawing in which one lucky attendee will win a $200 shopping spree at participating downtown businesses and four tickets to MAD on Ice.

Ticket-holders must be present to win prizes.

For an additional $10, attendees can have the North Pole Experience from 1 until 4 p.m. on the west (Washington Avenue) side of the Union County Courthouse.

The North Pole Experience includes photos with Santa -- and, possibly the Grinch -- and a "reindeer food" bag, a bag with oats, bird seed, glitter and a note with instructions on how to prepare for the arrival of Santa on Christmas Eve.

Proceeds from the Merry Market will go to the Arkansas Women's Business Center, which assists entrepreneurs, particularly women and minorities, in starting a business.

The AWBC has canceled its annual Mistletoe Market, a fundraiser, because of the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.

In addition to doing their holiday shopping and assisting the AWBC, people who attend the Merry Market can also help a Union County resident.

A blood drive will be held in support of 15-year-old Marie Reynolds, of Norphlet.

Reynolds has aplastic anemia, a rare condition in which the body is unable to produce new blood cells, making the patient more vulnerable to infections and internal bleeding.

"She has had to spend weeks out of school getting treatments at Arkansas Children's Hospital and getting infusions of platelets to stabilize her blood supply," Dr. Ken Bridges, professor of history and geography at South Arkansas Community College and resident historian for the South Arkansas Historical Preservation Society, wrote in a column that appeared in the News-Times earlier this week.

During the Merry Market, a LifeShare Blood Centers donation bus will be parked at 116 N. Washington. Blood donations will be used, in part, as a replenishment for Reynolds.

LifeShare donor T-shirts will be given away to participants while supplies last.

For more information, visit www.mainstreeteldorado.org or the MSE Facebook page. Also, call the MSE office at 870-862-4747. Leave a message if there is no answer.

To reach LifeShare in El Dorado, call 870-444-4750.

Print Headline: Part of South Washington to close today and tomorrow for Merry Market

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