Commentary: This holiday season, shop Cordova first

Soft ginger snaps and chocolate cookies served at Heidi Weise’s table. (Dec. 20, 2019) Photo by Zachary Snowdon Smith
Soft ginger snaps and chocolate cookies served by Heidi Weise. (Dec. 20, 2019) Photo by Zachary Snowdon Smith

By Christi Banks
For The Cordova Times

It’s Small Business Season with Small Business Saturday around the corner on Nov. 27. You may have heard about shipping delays and supply shortages, as well as recommendations to get your Christmas shopping done early. It is a great time to Shop Cordova First!

While we know not everything is available locally here in Cordova, it’s important to check in with our local businesses if you are looking for something special. Did you know that freight coming to businesses can sometimes be faster than shipping online orders? Why not order your items directly from local stores, save on shipping, and possibly even get your items faster? Cordova’s businesses are already stocking up on inventory in preparation for local holiday shopping.

Here are 5 more opportunities for you to Shop Cordova First for the perfect holiday gifts while supporting local businesses & artisans and keeping Cordovan money in Cordova:

Moonlight Madness

On Fridays Dec. 3, 10 and 17from 6-9 p.m. many businesses will remain open after hours for late night shopping. Some will be hosting fun events like Copper River Fleece’s “pop a balloon discount,” Seaside Salon’s Moonlight Madness Christmas party with refreshments, shopping, gift bags & prizes, and Kayak Cafe’s Santa Night with hot cocoa bar. For more information about Moonlight Madness go to:

Chamber Holiday Bazaar

Head to the Cordova Center and shop from local artisans & businesses at the Holiday Bazaar. Find unique hand-crafted gifts suited to any style and grab a bite to eat from local food vendors. Some of our vendors include Alaska Glacial Essentials, Knot Crazy, Sue’s Knives & More, Nana’s Nuggets, and St. Michael’s Russian Orthodox Church. The Bazaar takes place on Friday, Dec. 10 from 6-9 p.m., Saturday, Dec. 11 from noon-4 p.m., and Friday, Dec. 17 from 6-9 p.m. For more information about the Bazaar, go to:

Saturday Artisan Market

On Saturday, Dec. 18 from noon-4 p.m. stop by the Masonic to shop from local artisans at the Saturday Artisan Market. The Saturday Market takes place on the 3rd Saturday of each month. For more information contact Jessicca Morningstar at 907-429-7997 or head to:

Seawoman’s Wish Book and Men’s Night Out

Head into Seawoman’s Gifts. Walk through the store and leave your wish list in her Wish Book for those who may be shopping for you. On Dec. 15 from 5-8 p.m. there will be a Men’s Night Out at Seawoman’s. This event is exclusive for men only as they come shop elegant and classy gifts for their treasured someone. For more information call Seaman’s Hardware at 907-424-3647.

Kristmas at the Kayak

The Kayak Cafe will be creating and distributing their first ever Kayak Cafe Holiday Catalog. This will be a physical and electronic catalog featuring vendor products, bios, specialized holiday shopping guides, their menu, recipes, and more! The purpose of this catalog is to help Cordova shoppers see what’s available for gifts during this different Christmas season, and promote sales to our Alaska made artisans across the state. You can call the Kayak Cafe at 1-907-424-3534 or head to:

Remember, Shopping Cordova First strengthens our community by stimulating our economy, providing jobs, creating resources for community support, and so much more! Every local purchase makes a difference.

For more information about upcoming events head over to

If you have an event you would like to add to the Chamber Events Calendar, call me at 907-424-7260 or email me at

Christi Banks is communications and events coordinator at the Cordova Chamber of Commerce.