Atlanta pop-up shops and holiday markets are the perfect way to check off all the boxes on your shopping list this season. You can:
- Buy artsy, unique gifts and goods
- Support local artisans and businesses
- Avoid mall parking lots
- Meet the people who actually create these handmade products
- Get everyone oohing and ahhing at the next Secret Santa gift exchange
Plus, there’s a slight adrenaline boost getting the scoop on a momentary pop-up shop that will soon turn back into a pumpkin, parking lot or whatever its former self was before the holidays. Here’s the lowdown on some of our favorite upcoming Atlanta pop-up shops.
Through December 23: ICE Atlanta Holiday Pop-up Shop
What’s cooler than cool?! ICE, ICE, baby! Okay, we admit that was lame, but you knew we were working in a Vanilla Ice joke somewhere. Indie Craft Experience knows the perfect way to get Atlantans ready for the holidays and impressed with the artistic talent of this local community. The ICE Pop-up Shop, which kicked off earlier this month and is located at the ICE studio in Candler Park, offers handmade items made by more than 70 artists. This wild and weird Atlanta pop-up shop has some awesome items to get as gifts or just keep for yourself.
Make sure you stop by the pop-up on December 1 from 6 p.m. to 9 p.m. for the special Get Serious About Your Holiday Shopping event as well! This free evening features complimentary goodies like beer from Red Brick Brewing Company, cotton candy from Cult Carts and other fun treats!
Hours: November (closed Thanksgiving): Thursday, 11 a.m. to 7 p.m.; Friday & Saturday, 11 a.m. to 8 p.m.; Sunday, noon to 6 p.m. December (closed Mondays): Tuesday through Thursday, 11 a.m. to 7 p.m.; Friday & Saturday, 11 a.m. to 8 p.m.; Sunday, noon to 6 p.m. Learn more at ice-atlanta.com/popup-shop/.
November 19-20, 2016: ICE Holiday Shopping Spectacular
Get ready for the 12th Annual Holiday Shopping Spectacular, where you can shop directly from more than 165 craft and vintage vendors. Besides all the amazing holiday shopping you can scratch off your list, the event will include lots of local food vendors, deejays performing on both days, swag bags for the first 250 attendees each day and, get this, a special scavenger hunt sponsored by Clue Town Books and a tiny tree lot hosted by Tiny Doors ATL!
Make your way to the Georgia Freight Depot for all the fun (suggested parking at Underground Atlanta’s parking decks). Entrance costs $5 at the door (kids 12 and younger are free).
Hours: 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. each day. Learn more at ice-atlanta.com.
December 2-3, 2016: Decatur Holiday Marketplace and Cafe
Decatur is a playground for Atlanta’s creative folk, so it only makes sense that the neighborhood would have such a great pop-up holiday market! The Decatur Holiday Marketplace and Cafe, located at Clairemont Elementary School, welcomes shoppers to peruse the work of nearly 100 local and regional artists and artisans.
You’ll have the chance to buy some great gifts for the holiday season, but you’ll also be contributing to the fundraising efforts of Clairemont Elementary. This is the school’s biggest fundraiser of the year, and the money brought in helps pay for infrastructure improvements, supplies and social events. Stop by the school’s transformed cafeteria, buy a bowl of soup, enjoy the live music and then shop ’til you drop among the aisles of vendors.
Hours: Friday, 5:30 to 9:30 p.m.; Saturday, 10 a.m. to 6:30 p.m. Learn more at decaturholidaymarketplace.com.
December 3, 2016: Back to Nature Holiday Market and Festival
Roswell’s Chattahoochee Nature Center (CNC) is an awesome draw on its own — guests can follow the Wildlife Walk and see animals in their natural habitats, participate in interactive exhibits, take a tour through the many themed gardens and just take a few moments to embrace the beauty of the Chattahoochee. But once a year, the nature center offers a gift to the community — free public admission to CNC for its holiday market event. This year, more than 40 local artisans and vendors will display their eco-friendly, fair-trade goods for the masses.
Besides the great holiday gifts, attendees can also visit CNC’s Nature Store for other earth-friendly products and presents. Because this event includes free admission to CNC, make sure to get there early because of the limited parking — better yet, carpool and leave a green footprint on your way to the holiday market.
Hours: 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Learn more at chattnaturecenter.org.
December 9-11, 2016: Shoppe Artisan
Welcome to the motherlode of holiday markets! Shoppe Artisan is what can only be described as a pop-up mall in Cobb Galleria Centre. Any type of gift you need can be found in this labyrinth of home and garden goods, fashion accessories, children’s gifts, tech products, gourmet ingredients, etc.
Admission to Shoppe Artisan is $8 online and $10 at the door (children under 12 are free). The best part? Tickets are good for all three days! Make sure you bring extra cash to actually pay for any of the cool items you find in this inaugural holiday marketplace.
Hours: Friday, noon to 8 p.m.; Saturday, 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.; Sunday, 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Learn more at shoppeartisan.com
December 10, 2016: Root City Market Holiday Pop-up
We in Atlanta are so lucky to have some really cool, outgoing proponents of the shop local movement. Root City Market is one such group shining a light on the wonderful goods and products that can be found from the people who work and live here. Root City’s December holiday pop-up is the mother of all markets. Take a drive to Armour Yards, and besides all the great shopping you can do from more than 45 artisans, you’ll also have access to great live music, food and activities. Admission is $5, and if you come early (as in, be one of the first 50 entrants), you may score a free swag bag!
Hours: 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Visit rootcitymarket.com to learn more.
Just remember, these are some of our favorite Atlanta pop-up shops and markets, but there are many more happening in the city throughout the holiday season. Churches, schools, neighborhood coalitions and other small, community-based groups are also planning some great temporary shops, so make sure to keep your eyes peeled for these great ways to shop local!
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