By Jared Davidson –
In a holiday season already stuffed full of shopping events, Showstoppers promises something a little different: unique gifts, food, and an opportunity to come together as a community.
The event, which takes place at Q West (88 Richmond Rd.) on November 25 and 26 from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m., features a diverse lineup of vendors from across the city. Pascale’s Ice Cream, Undercarriage, Top of the World, Peachey Farms, Joe Momma, and Mama Shell Bakery will all be in attendance. Mama Shell will be debuting their Tipsy Cupcakes, a wine-filled cupcake that comes in three varieties: white, red and rose. The event will also mark the physical debut of the new Ottawa-based Mexican embroidery venture, Frida’s Attic, whose clothing and accessories are made by indigenous Mexican artists working for fair wages.
And while the event is primarily about finding the right gift, it’s also about giving back to the community. A $3 entry fee goes to the Westboro Region Food Bank. Donations of new or gently used winter clothing are also welcome. If you’re feeling generous (or hungry), enormous pies will be available for purchase, with all proceeds going to Kindred Farms’ horse rescue. Each pie is said to weigh three pounds, which, if you think about it, is plenty for a pie.
Like the pies, Showstoppers is meant to be spectacular, to evoke a kind of awe at the sheer grandeur of it all, but it’s also meant to give residents a place to gather, to experience some of what the city has to offer, meet neighbours and hang out. To facilitate that, there will be plenty of activities to keep younger family members occupied, such as a Snow Queen photo op (Saturday from noon to 3 p.m.), a chocolate-making tutorial, and a holiday cardmaking workshop.
“I’d really like it to be a hub where people can come and meet each other,” says Catherine. “Put your phone down and come say ‘hi’ to everybody!”
This is the third iteration of Showstoppers, though it is the event’s first time in Westboro. All Saints Church in Sandy Hill served as its previous venue, but this year Catherine decided to take the event on the road. Part of the reason for that came from her desire to give more people in the city the Showstoppers experience, to break through the lines that divide Ottawa’s neighbourhoods and unite the city.
“Plus, I really like the neighbourhood,” says Catherine.
Showstoppers will certainly be something to behold. There’s word of special Massai warrior-blessed dog collars and crystals courtesy of Business Fractal. It’s an event that will have to be attended to be comprehended.
For more information about Showstoppers, see the Showstoppers 2017 event page on Facebook