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St. Mary’s, St. Joseph’s parish ready for annual bazaar

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MASSENA — A decades-old fundraiser for St. Mary’s and St. Joseph’s parish in Massena returns next month.

The parish’s annual bazaar, which celebrated 80 years in 2012, will be held from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Nov. 9 in the St. Mary’s social hall.

Sister Maureen Sweeney, the parish’s pastoral associate, said the event is always held the second Saturday in November. A committee of 20 to 30 members has been planning for it since early this year.

“A lot of people give their all to this. We have people with new ideas. I especially appreciate everybody’s help,” she said.

Volunteers include confirmation candidates and members of the Catholic Youth Organization, who decorate the hall.

Sister Maureen said this year’s activities provide something for all ages, from children’s games to a big-money ticket drawing with a $2,500 grand prize.

The activities include Skilo, a cakewalk with all kinds of delicious cakes and a country store with homemade baked goods, fudge, Kaneb’s cider, donuts, candy, breads, canned items and bar cookie recipes in a jar.

Fancy goods will be available that can be used as gifts for all occasions, including Christmas, she said.

In addition, there will be pull tabs, a turkey raffle and “Ticket Central” with a variety of household goods to meet everyone’s needs, a basket of cheer, a money tree and more.

“We have Skilo downstairs for seniors or anyone and kid’s games upstairs. There’s a lot of stuff going on there. It provides something for all ages,” Sister Maureen said.

There will be plenty of food to satisfy an appetite, she said, including soups, fried bread dough, hamburgers, hot dogs, candy, ice cream and a selection of beverages that can be enjoyed with friends.

The money-ticket drawing will be held at 6 p.m. with a grand prize of $2,500 and second, third and fourth prizes of $100 each. Organizers have had 2,500 tickets for sale leading up to the event, and she said there are still more available.

As the years have gone by, some things have changed with the bazaar, Sister Maureen said.

“We’ve updated things over the years,” she said.

But among the constants over the 80-plus years is an opportunity for folks to get together for some fun and camaraderie, she said.

“The bazaar benefits St. Mary’s and St. Joseph’s parish and provides the people of Massena and neighboring communities the opportunity to relish time together during the beautiful autumn day,” Sister Maureen said. “I think it is also an opportunity for young people to come. There’s something for everybody, and they get a sense of involvement.”

The other constant is the money it raises for St. Mary’s and St. Joseph’s parish. It’s the biggest fundraiser for the parish.

“It provides for the spiritual welfare of the young people that attend our religious education school and helps to educate the youth academically,” she said.

Money raised also helps with the needs of the parish, as well as the upkeep of the facilities, which include St. Mary’s and St. Joseph’s churches, she said.

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