Aiken's Makin' to return to downtown for 46th year

·2 min read

Sep. 3—Aiken's Makin' is returning to downtown Aiken for the 46th year.

This free annual arts and crafts festival, held by the Aiken Chamber of Commerce, will take place along Park Avenue on Friday, Sept. 9 from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. and on Saturday, Sept. 10 from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.

This year, the festival will have over 170 craft vendors and 18 food vendors, said Dianne Phillips, the event director and chamber's vice president of administration. The vendors will have a variety of items for sale, including wood work, metal work, ceramics, handmade clothing, children's clothing, adult clothing, baked goods, canned or jarred goods, and more.

"The event has something for everyone, including children," Phillips said. "We have a sand art vendor so the kids can make (something) to take home with them. Of course, we have a face painter at the event ... you can buy something at our show for $15 or spend $5,000 or $6,000. You can find just that right piece to finish off that room, find the right gift. A lot of folks come out and do their Christmas shopping. Some have fall wreaths out."

When it comes to the vendors, Phillips said there is a juried score for the vendors, which means they have to be selected for the show. Because of this, approximately one-third of the vendors are people who either haven't been in the show before or weren't in it last year.

One of the new vendors is Kristy Taylor with The Pointing Dog Collars. She started her business, which is handmade dog collars with bowties and accessories, during COVID. As for why she wanted to participate in Aiken's Makin', it's because she grew up in Aiken and has always attended the event.

"I'm a 5th generation Aikenite. I've always gone, and I know its a unique event," Taylor said. "I know a good crowd will come up. It can be like a family reunion."

With all the food vendors, there will be seating for attendees to sit and enjoy their funnel cakes, gyros and more, Phillips said.

Phillips said visitors are encouraged to park at the Aiken Visitors Center and Train Museum, located at 406 Park Ave. S.E., so downtown doesn't get clogged.

For more information on Aiken's Makin', visit aikenchamber.net.