• Fri. Jan 27th, 2023

The Premiere African American Holiday Shopping Event of the Season, Halle-Bration, a Hallelujah Celebration, is Back!

By Marla Hurston Fuller

If you’re looking for holiday events, we’ve got you covered. Halle-Bration, a Hallelujah Celebration, is back for a 10th year and is bigger and better than before. Shoppers can get a head start on their gift list and enjoy the Christmas shopping experience of the season. Creativity abounds as artists, craftsmen and food vendors gather to demonstrate and sell their work and provide plenty of live entertainment. 

The event is Friday, December 9 from 4 p.m. to 8 p.m. and Saturday, December 10 from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. at New Vision United Methodist Church, 4400 Reading Road 45229.

Birthed after a conversation about how the city needed a holiday showcase for businesses owned by African-Americans, two women decided to create one and Halle-Bration was born. What started in 2013 at New Vision United Methodist Church in Bond Hill with 30 vendors and a few hundred people in attendance, has grown exponentially. Today it’s expanded to nearly 65 vendors and an expected 2,000 attendees. 

“When I started the Halle-Bration event, it was with another church member who was also a business owner, Miriam Kinard. We thought that there needed to be a venue where Black owned businesses could sell their items during the holidays in the community. Nothing existed anymore,” stated Lewis. “We created the Citywide holiday marketplace and it was successful. After 3 years, we invited the African American Chamber and the Collective Empowerment Group to join us. We changed the name to HalleBration, a Hallelujah Celebration.” 

Lewis says that Halle-Bration has become a destination place for the holidays. After starting on one floor for one day, it expanded to include two levels and two days. Over 300 businesses have benefited from HalleBration over the years. “We love the excitement it brings for families and the children. There is something for everyone” explained Lewis. 

Shoppers are encouraged to ring in the holidays at Halle-Bration, Black Cincinnati’s premiere kickoff to the holiday shopping season. This diverse showcase that features one-of-a-kind seasonal items, high quality handcrafted goods, and fabulous holiday gift ideas is not to be missed. This free event is the place to get all of your holiday shopping done in one fun-filled weekend. Attendees will be astonished at the various collection of local art, crafts, holiday gifts, and specialty foods that will be found at this event. This unique holiday shopping experience will include live entertainment from Lavieena Campbell and Friends, Rhythmic Sounds of New J, saxophonist, Ellis J. Williams and the Under Cover Band-swing band plus a whole lot of family fun.

Attendees will have an array of workshops and seminars that they can participate in as well. The Center for Closing the Health Gap will present “How We Must Save Us!” and Preschool Promise will conduct a workshop on Friday night. On Saturday, children can enjoy “Art and Fun” with Julia O’Neal; participate in the Teen Summit, “Taking Charge of Your Life” with Pastor Ennis Tait; Path to Homeownership presented by Union and Guardian Savings Bank; and Life Center Organ Donor Network will present “Your Legacy Starts with YES!

An experience your family will look forward to year after year, Halle-Bration is a much-anticipated event for the vendors as it is for attendees. A strategic partnership, Halle-Bration vendors can gain enjoyment, value, and a lasting relationship.

Pat Foster, CEO, Cincy Décor, has been a vendor for the past 9 years. She says, “Halle-Bration is to Cincy Décor & Ardysslife a celebration of faith, family and friends. It has been a great boost to business since the beginning.”

Vendors also get increased brand exposure through the event itself, event advertising, and media coverage; direct contact with an audience full of relatively warm leads and access to data about attendees and in-event interactions, which can be highly informative for product development and market research.

“Halle-Bration is important for my business “Positively No Excuses ” because it is an annual perfect two-day holiday gift event, to display and sell special unique handcrafted items (ethnic dolls, tote bags, knitted hats and jewelry). It is fun and informative for the entire family,” explained Deborah Hilson “IMAGINATION” Doll’s Artist.

Back by popular demand is “A Taste of Halle-Bration,” with mouth-watering sweets and treats, such as: Final Course Gourmet Desserts featuring smooth banana pudding with an added flavor of caramel pecan and turtles, blueberry or strawberry; Bonita’s Southern Style Sweet Potato Pies; Chico’s Cheesecakes; and Sweet Jazz Treats cupcakes and cake pops. Julia’s Home Cooking will also be available for full meals.

Also back again this year is the long-awaited Directory listing all participating vendors to make it easier to do business with them throughout the year. And let’s not forget the free parking and shuttle service from the Mercy Health parking lot. 

Presenters of the event are: New Vision UMC, the Greater Cincinnati African American Chamber of Commerce and the Collective Empowerment Group of Cincinnati. Our Platinum Sponsors are First Financial Bank and Fifth Third Bank, Gold Level Sponsors: Union and Guardian Savings Bank, Life Center Organ Donor Network; Silver Sponsor: The Center for Closing the Health Gap and our Media sponsor is The Cincinnati Herald and our Production Sponsor is Easley Blessed Media. For more information, follow us on Facebook, call 513-961-4817 or visit www.newvision-umc.org.