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Fair traded products will be available in the Fair Trade Room of Pleasant Hill Community Church tax-free at the Alternative Christmas Fair, which will be held Saturday, Nov. 16, in Pleasant Hill.

Looking for a gift for that hard-to-buy-for person? Tired of giving toys that are discarded after Christmas? Want to ensure that your money is well spent? 

There is a way to give a meaningful gift during the holidays while supporting worthy organizations. The Alternative Christmas Fair is an opportunity to purchase items, memberships or donate in the name of family and friends from 20 organizations. 

The Justice and Mission Ministry of the Pleasant Hill Community Church, United Church of Christ is again sponsoring the fair Saturday, Nov. 16, from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. in the Pleasant Hill Community House and Fair Trade Room of the Church. 

Donations of non-perishable foods will help stock the local food pantries. Please bring diapers, shampoo and conditioner (non-travel size), cleaning supplies, paper products and laundry detergent for the Avalon Center’s emergency shelter. SERRV and Equal Exchange, as well as other fair trade products, will be for sale tax-free in the Fair Trade Room of the PH Community Church building.

During the fair, people may donate to as many of the 18 non-profit organizations as they wish. You might want to bring address labels to help them keep track of their donors. Shoppers can buy products that are fairly traded helping support self-help industries around the world.

As all of the participating groups are non-profit, donations or memberships are tax-deductible. Although the products in the Fair Trade Room are not tax-deductible, they will be tax-free for this special event. 

Participants at the fair this year are Africa Education Leadership Initiative; Alzheimer’s of Tennessee; the Back Bay Mission of Biloxi, MS; Cumberland County Hospice; Oak Ridge Environmental Peace Alliance (OREPA); the Resource Fund of Statewide Organizing for Community eMpowerment (SOCM); the PHCC Cuba Partnership Fund supporting the B.G. Lavastida Center in Santiago de Cuba; Avalon Center; Pleasant Hill Boy Scout Troop 170; Cumberland County Habitat for Humanity; Cumberland Good Samaritans; The Grab thrift shop; Heifer International; Morgan Scott Project; Parents and Friends of Lesbians and Gays (PFLAG); PH Historical Society of the Cumberlands; Cumberland Adult Reading Council (CARC); and Uplands Lifelong Learning Institute. 

Each group decorates its own area, provides tribute cards, brochures and other materials. 

Coffee shops will be available for people to have coffee, hot tea, cider and goodies while visiting with each other in both the Community House and Boyce Hall of PH Community Church building. 

Attendees will be provided with a clipboard and a sheet listing all the organizations with space for the amount you donate. You make out one check to the church and receive a photocopy of your sheet for your records. As all of the groups are 401c(3), donations are tax-deductible. The Fair Trade products, although made by nonprofit cooperatives around the world, are not deductible.

The Pleasant Hill Community House is at 48 Church Dr. across from the Pleasant Hill Post Office at the corner of Main St. and Church Drive. The Pleasant Hill Community Church is across the street at 67 Church Dr. 

All memberships and donations will go to the participating organizations. The PH Community Church has sponsored a fair for 16 years as an outreach mission. For information, call Don or Jean Clark at (931) 277-5467 or email

This week in Pleasant Hill:

Tuesday, Nov. 12, noon — Pleasant Hill emergency siren test. 

Tuesday, Nov. 12, 6 p.m. — Pleasant Hill Town Council meeting at PH Town Hall, 351 E. Main St. Call 277-3813.

Wednesday, Nov. 13 — Recycling pick-up at curbs of homes for all Pleasant Hill residents.

Wednesdays, 6 p.m. — Bible study and prayer at the Pleasant Hill Baptist Mission at 39 Browntown Rd. near Main St.

Thursday, Nov. 14, 10 a.m. — Memory Care Support Group in Heritage Hall. All welcome.

Thursdays, 2-4 p.m. — Fair Trade Room opens in PH Community Church. Coffee, tea, chocolate, SERRV crafts from around the world. Supports co-ops and crafters with a “fair” price for their goods.

Thursdays, 2-4 p.m.; Saturdays, 10 a.m-noon — Recycling at PH Town Hall, 351 E. Main St. Call 277-3813.

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