The PTO will host its this weekend.
The fair runs Saturday, Nov. 5 from 9 a.m. - 3 p.m. inside the school gym.
According to PTO Chair and Fundraising Coordinator Kendra DeYoung, there will be 70-75 tables (one crafter per table) featuring: jewelry, manufactured and homemade crafts, hair and skincare products (such as feathers and hair bands), holiday decor, stained glass, quilts and independent home business consultants from Avon, Tupperware and Tastefully Simple.
She said many vendors own small businesses in Peabody.
"Higgins is the largest middle school in New England with 1,400 students," said DeYoung, who has an eighth-grader herself at the school. "This event is important to us, because it helps support those students in so many ways -- cultural events, the eighth grade moving on ceremony, agenda books, etc."
Last year, the fair brought in $7,000-$8,000 for the PTO, she said. DeYoung and co-chair Julie Despres start planning the event in June each year.
DeYoung said there's ample parking for the fair, free admission, ample space inside the gym and there's a wide variety of items for men and women of all ages, including raffles.
"There will be 14 raffle baskets, valued at $100-$150 each," she said. "It's a tough economy, and it's difficult to fundraise. Local businesses were generous and donated gift cards. We have a South of the Border basket, with gift cards from businesses in South Peabody; Mommy's Day Off basket with dry cleaners, facial and acupunture gift cards; Dad's Toolbox with a Home Depot gift card. They are $2 each, or three for $5. The principal also provided three parking tickets for graduation, close to the main entrance. Those are $5 each."
DeYoung says the majority of shoppers at the fair tend to not even have a connection to the school, it's usually because they know it takes place around the same time of year within a two-week window. Yet, parents with their children, Higgins students (known as Higgins Helpers), grandparents and employees of local businesses also drop by.
DeYoung said the fair was actually pushed back this year due to competition with traffic for Haunted Happenings in Salem.
Besides hot dogs, refreshments, snacks and nachos for sale, the cookie walk is also back.
"We asked parents to bake or buy cookies," DeYoung told Peabody Patch, "For $3 (a small container) or $5 (a large container), people can pick and choose cookie flavors, and fill up the box."
She added this fair stresses community involvement -- some crafters have been participating for 10 years.