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Artists Sunday brings local creators into the spotlight

The newest addition to the post-Thanksgiving shopping weekend is only in its second year.

PERRY, Iowa — You know Black Friday, Small Business Saturday and Cyber Monday—but doesn't that skip a day? That's where Artists Sunday comes in.

Artists Sunday started in 2020 with the goal of encouraging shoppers to support local creators as they look for gifts.

"Every artist that you invest in, whether it's buying something to hang on your wall, or something for your kitchen, or something that you wear, or jewelry, that's going back into the local economy," said Christopher Sherman, the executive director of Artists Sunday.

In just the second year of the event, over 570 communities and 4,500 independent artists across the country participated. 

In Iowa, the Mary Rose Collection in Perry hosted their own Artists Sunday showcase, featuring a workshop on making Christmas ornaments, a chance to meet creators in the area and art for sale from 40 different local artists. Mary Rose Nichols, the collection's owner, says that after struggling through COVID, the celebration was a nice change of pace.

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"It was a little bit of a struggle, to be honest," Nichols said. "What we're seeing now is people are so eager to see handmade, homemade creations that they're they're starting to flock in."

For artists in Iowa and across the country, having the chance to share their work can mean the world, and Artists Sunday provides the perfect opportunity for that.

"It's not going away. And if anything, it's more important now than ever to continue to support the arts and individual independent creators," said Lynsi Pasutti, an artist who participated in the event.

All of the artists Local 5 spoke to said finding and sharing their work online—even if you aren't able to buy anything—is one of the most helpful things you can do to support independent creators. 

If you missed Artists Sunday, you can still check out the local art at the Mary Rose Collection's 15-year anniversary celebration on Saturday, Dec. 4 from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.

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