Meet the vendors from the 2022 Sparwood Christmas market

Janice Schwindt was selling her paintings, many of which capture the natural beauty of the Elk Valley, at the 43rd annual Christmas market in Sparwood on Nov. 18, 2022. (Joshua Fischlin/The Free Press)Janice Schwindt was selling her paintings, many of which capture the natural beauty of the Elk Valley, at the 43rd annual Christmas market in Sparwood on Nov. 18, 2022. (Joshua Fischlin/The Free Press)
Jessica Johnson Francis and Tamara Williamson, along with their young kids, were selling traditional Jamaican fruit cakes at the 43rd annual Christmas market in Sparwood on Nov. 18, 2022. (Joshua Fischlin/The Free Press)Jessica Johnson Francis and Tamara Williamson, along with their young kids, were selling traditional Jamaican fruit cakes at the 43rd annual Christmas market in Sparwood on Nov. 18, 2022. (Joshua Fischlin/The Free Press)
Siegfried Sajitz was selling skin, hair care and home cleanser products manufactured in Germany at the 43rd annual Christmas market in Sparwood on Nov. 18, 2022. (Joshua Fischlin/The Free Press)Siegfried Sajitz was selling skin, hair care and home cleanser products manufactured in Germany at the 43rd annual Christmas market in Sparwood on Nov. 18, 2022. (Joshua Fischlin/The Free Press)
Tracy Samphire was selling original art products, including Christmas cards, at the 43rd annual Christmas market in Sparwood on Nov. 18, 2022. (Joshua Fischlin/The Free Press)Tracy Samphire was selling original art products, including Christmas cards, at the 43rd annual Christmas market in Sparwood on Nov. 18, 2022. (Joshua Fischlin/The Free Press)

Over 40 vendors were present at the annual Christmas market held in Sparwood on Friday (Nov. 18), selling wares with roots as far as Germany and Jamaica.

The market was the 43rd Craft and Small Business Fair put on by the Sparwood and District Arts and Heritage Council, and took place at the Henry Volkmann Memorial Leisure Complex from 1 to 8 p.m.

Here are some of the artisans and business-people who filled the tables.

Janice Schwindt

Schwindt, who lives in Sparwood, was selling original paintings alongside her sister, Charlotte Roberts, who was selling hot chocolate bombs, baked goods and wreaths.

Schwindt’s work captures scenes of natural beauty from around the area, as well as portraits, paintings of pets and more.

She’s inspired mostly by local scenery “because it’s so beautiful here,” she said.

Schwindt began painting about four years ago after a nudge from her sister to give it a try.

“I’ve always wished that I could paint, and I just never tried,” she said.

Roberts said they went to a ‘Paint and Sit’ one night, and Schwindt loved it, thinking she would give it a go on her own.

“And she did, and you saw the result. It’s amazing.”

She has a private Facebook group which people can request to join called ‘Paintings by Janice’.

Jessica Johnson Francis and Tamara Williamson

Johnson Francis and Williamson, who both moved to Sparwood over seven years ago, were selling Jamaican fruit cakes surrounded by their young children.

Johnson Francis said the cakes are a Christmas tradition, and are made with dried fruits, spices, wine and rum.

“We normally have it as a dessert after Christmas dinner, with a glass of wine.”

The wine and rum is used instead of milk.

“That’s what is the base of it, the wine. The fruits are soaked for over a year.”

Williamson was offering samples to shoppers to give the treat a try.

“A lot of people really love the cake, they say that it’s moist and it’s delicious, something that they have never had before,” she said.

To order a cake, call 250-433-7904 or 250-433-1643.

Siegfried Sajitz

Sajitz, who immigrated to Canada from Germany 22 years ago and lives in the Crowsnest Pass, was selling skin and hair care products from his home country.

The products are from a small manufacturer in the Black Forest, called Hakawerk, and began by selling a multi-purpose cleanser right after the Second World War.

“Right after the war, in 1946, they started with this… and then at that time, they went from door to door to sell it,” Sajitz said.

“We are… the only company selling it in Canada,” he said.

Selling alongside his wife, their company is called Haka-Can Cosmetics, and Sajitz said they’ve been selling it since they moved to Canada in 2000.

“We really like to come here for the Sparwood Christmas (market). They always invite us, they’re always friendly, and so it’s really a pleasure to come here.”

Tracy Samphire

Samphire is a self-taught artist who was selling, among lots of other original works, homemade Christmas cards.

“We’ve all had such a rough couple of years,” she said.

“I wanted to bring in some laughter with some of them, and that’s what I did to create them. I brought in some silly pictures and some silly sayings, and that just to brighten everybody’s day.”

The Free Press asked for a card quote that would brighten a day.

“Everyone seems to love this,” she said.

“It’s Penguin-ing to look a lot like Christmas.”

She is based out of Okotoks but said she comes to the area a lot and does commission work.

Samphire can be found on Facebook at ‘Samphire Canvas Creations’.

READ MORE: ‘Sense of community’ at 43rd annual Christmas market in Sparwood


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josh.fischlin@thefreepress.ca

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