It’s the biggest and longest-running “brocante”, or bazaar, in Paris organized by the city’s American community. The annual AAWE Bazaar is a mind-blowing one-day rummage sale spread out over three floors of the American Church, which is located along the Seine River in the 7th arrondissement.
If you have never attended this community event organized by American women, you’re in for a surprise. It’s impossible to walk out empty-handed.
This year, the 40th annual AAWE Bazaar is scheduled for Saturday, December 3, 2016, from 9:30am to 7:00pm. The day before the big event, an army of 200 plus volunteers will receive a truckload filled with bags and boxes stuffed with generous donations collected at a storage depot outside of Paris. The call to clean-out-your-closets-and-give dates back to a time when brocantes or braderies did not exist in Paris.
Bargains books, clothes, toys and more…
There are rows of racks and tables filled with gently used designer clothing and accessories. Almost an entire room is filled with second hand English books to choose from. Bookworms can take home several classics or bestsellers for the price of a new book. And children will love picking up a bag full of toys and games that other kids have loved and outgrown for the price of one new toy.
Handicrafts and Home Baked Goodies
It’s hard to resist the original handicrafts on display, especially when you learn who made them. There’s a dedicated group of women who meet almost every week throughout the year to lovingly hand make the Christmas cards, decorations, tea cozies and placemats.
There’s also a scrumptious selection of home baked goods made in American kitchens in Paris for sale at the bazaar. If you are craving carrot cake, brownies, pecan pies or peanut butter cookies, head straight to the American bake stand!
A Community Affair
It’s a community gathering open to the public. The event has earned the backing of solid sponsors who provide attractive prizes for the Tombola. Proceeds from the Tombola help fund the Charitable Donations coffer which is used to make donations to local, national and international charities with specific emphasis on women’s and children’s causes. And when the long day is over, all of the remaining clothing, products and food is redistributed that evening to local and overseas charitable associations.
So, when you buy something at the bazaar you’re contributing to a greater good. Now isn’t that a wonderful way to start getting into the holiday spirit?