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Shoppers flock to River Arts District on hunt for unique gifts

DEC. 24, 2021 - Artists in the River Arts District were working on what was a holiday for most and doing what they love, while shoppers visited the galleries. (Photo credit: WLOS staff)

Asheville is known for its art scene, and no one was taking the day off in the River Arts District on Friday.

North Carolina Glass Center manager Kim Hundertmark welcomed curious customers in for a unique experience.

“We wanted to be open and give folks an opportunity to get that last-minute shopping done in a place where they can pick up items made locally and by artists in our community,” Hundertmark said.

Lori Schmidt, who was visiting from San Antonio Texas, was one of many RAD visitors.

“We’re here to visit Asheville and enjoy all there is to do here, and now we’re doing our Christmas shopping,” Schmidt said

Artists were working on what is a holiday for most and doing what they love.

Nabile El Jasukari, who was working out of the Mark Bettis Gallery, encouraged visitors to with a curious mind.

“Come to the district and be openminded and just, like, really be curious about knowing the artists’ process and the artists’ concept," Jasukari said. "Everyone here would love to help and offer advice.”

Shoppers were spending their day off looking for unique gifts that could only be found in the RAD.

Debbie Cebula and her family were at the Glass Center to enjoy an early Christmas gift.

“This is a Christmas present for my daughter. We’re making Christmas ornaments and blowing glass,” Cebula said.

It’s safe to say Cebula enjoyed her experience and is already looking forward to another visit.

“I loved it. I already sent a text to my sister and told her she needs to come down and do it," Cebula said.