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Santa Cruz holiday shopping opportunities this weekend with gourmet food gifts

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There are several Santa Cruz holiday shopping opportunities this weekend; here are two events that include gourmet food gifts.

Handmade Gifts $25 & Under Saturday

Saturday, December 7 is the 6th annual Handmade Gift Sale of $25-and-under items, from 10 am-4pm at Center Street Grill. There are gifts including artwork, handcrafted pens, aprons, wallets, and purses. The culinary items include local jams and preserves, gourmet honey, and confections. Read more at event web site.

The Details: Saturday, December 7, free admission

Location: Center Street Grill, 1001 Center St, Santa Cruz

Jingle Shells at Seymour Center Sunday

Sunday, December 8, 2013 is the annual Jingle Shells Arts & Crafts Festival at Long Marine Lab’s Seymour Marine Discovery Center from noon to 5:30 pm, followed by the “festive whale lighting” at 5:45pm. Participants can explore the Seymour Center’s exhibits and aquarium, visit Ms. Blue (giant blue whale skeleton), look for migrating gray whales from the shipwreck deck, and meet local artisans while shopping for unique holiday gifts including jewelry, ceramics, handmade soaps, and seaglass. Vendors include three related to food: Desperately Seeking Chocolate will be offering dessert sauces including Single Malt Whiskey Fudge, Ginger Habanero Fudge, and – new this year – Balsamic Fudge. Twins Kitchen creates innovative jams and mustards using seasonal and organic fruits from local farms. Flavors include Strawberry Balsamic Jam with rosemary, Black Pepper Raspberry Vanilla Jam with lavender, and Apricot Bourbon Mustard. Farmer Freed makes culinary salt blends using local organic ingredients. Seymour Center will be serving free hot cider. While you shop, you can enjoy live music. Also note that the Center’s Ocean Discovery Shop (this is separate from the special vendors appearing that day) is offering 10% off all purchases on Sunday.

The Details

Sunday, December 8: Admission is $6 for adults, $4 for seniors and students, and free for Friends of Long Marine Lab members, UCSC undergrad students, and kids 3 and under

Location: Seymour Marine Discovery Center at Long Marine Lab, 100 Shaffer Road (past Natural Bridges State Beach, at the end of Delaware Avenue).

For anyone unfamiliar with the Center, it’s dedicated to educating people about the role scientific research plays in the understanding and conservation of the world's oceans. Read more at Seymour Center’s web site or call (831) 459-3800.

Follow me on Twitter @santacruzfoodie.

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