Tommyknockers Bazaar brings past to life

Barbara Lawlor, Central City.  Everything about the Tommyknocker Holiday Bazaar in the Teller House in Central City evokes the traditions and settings of days gone by. A genteel time. The Gilpin County Lady Elks Club members dress the part with floor length Victorian gowns and shawls, as well as spectacular hats. Fine jewelry, scarves, pottery, gourmet sauces, Christmas decorations, and handmade crafts are piled high in the three rooms of the historic Teller House.

Children sit at a table and work on their coloring contest entry or decorate cookies. Father Christmas takes his place in a throne-like chair and greets guests who have requests. Father Christmas is the traditional British name for a figure associated with Christmas, a forerunner of Santa Claus. He has always been the star of the Teller House Bazaar.

The 18th Annual Tommyknockers took place last weekend, and attracted vendors from all over Colorado, many of them regulars for the annual event. These vendors build up their inventory all year long, preparing for the holiday season of gift buying. It is an excellent way to display their wares, and also take orders when a customer wants more of the items on sale.

One of the women sells out of her Bronco colored hot pads every year, no matter how they are doing in the season. This year Gilpin resident Gary Kragenbrink displayed his fantastical sculptures, a gift the receiver would treasure and talk about forever. The Central City Historical Society had a vast collection of books on the opera and the town’s mining history.

There were ornaments from gourds and lighted glass block decorations.
Volunteers from Charlie’s Place had a wide variety of pet toys and pictures of cats that needed homes. What could be better than a furry feline under the Christmas tree?

Barbara Lawlor

Barbara is a reporter for The Mountain-Ear.