Shop while supporting a good cause this season at the Junior League of Austin’s A Christmas Affair.
By Lauren Jones, Photos courtesy of Elizabeth Christian PR
The Junior League of Austin’s A Christmas Affair is one of the largest fundraising events in the city, raising and donating nearly $1 million annually to community-impact programs and local nonprofits.
“A Christmas Affair is the kickoff to Austin’s holiday season, and it’s for a great cause,” says Lia Truitt, account supervisor at Elizabeth Christian PR, which handles public relations for the event..“The money goes to 35 nonprofits, ranging from the Girls Empowerment Network to Mothers’ Milk Bank of Austin to Coats for Kids and the Food in Tummies program, a Junior League initiative which provides nutritious meals for underprivileged students.”
This year, A Christmas Affair will begin with its beloved holiday market. Thousands will gather at the Palmer Events Center to shop from more than 200 vendors from throughout the county.
“There will be jewelry, speciality goods, paintings, clothing and there is even a car for sale,” Truitt says. “[It’s] anything and everything you could want at a holiday market.”
There will also be a Girls Night Out event and pictures with Santa, an event that’s perfect for the entire family.
For the Junior League of Austin’s president, Julie Hall, A Christmas Affair is more than just a time to come together; it’s a time give back to the community.
“Last year, we donated 34,000 coats for children in need through Coats for Kids,” Hall beams. “This year, we are proud to be starting a mobile site, in addition to our home at the Palmer Events Center, [on]Rundberg [Lane].
In addition to the inspirational work the Junior League of Austin does through Coats for Kids, members are excited for what lies ahead for the Food in Tummies program. Since the Junior League recently partnered with the Austin Independent School District, representatives of the organization hope to serve even more children in need.
“FIT is a 34-week program where we are able to provide meals so no student goes hungry,” Hall explains. “Ninety percent of the students in our program live below the poverty line and are eligible for free school lunches, but their access to food isn’t guaranteed over the weekend.”
That is where the Junior League steps in, bridging the hunger gap and provided much-needed nutrition to the children of Austin.
“Many of these kids come to school hungry on Monday,” Hall explains. “It then takes them until Wednesday to recover. If you think about it, that is two days of them not being able to concentrate and a loss of opportunity to learn.”
This year, A Christmas Affair will celebrate its 42nd year bringing Austinites together for a great cause. It’s a time to celebrate the start of the holiday season and a time to empower the community as a whole.
To buy tickets to this year’s A Christmas Affair and to learn more about the Junior League of Austin, visit jlaustin.org.