Opportunities abound at fairs this weekend for holiday shopping. You're likely to find special presents for those friends and relatives who already seem to have everything. Plus a few gifts for yourself.
In most cases your purchases also will be benefiting a nonprofit organization.
But before you buy food items, heed these words of caution from Bert Bartleson, technical expert for food programs at the State Department of Health: Home-canned products such as pickled asparagus or salsa can be unsafe, as well as vacuum-packed products not stored at proper temperatures.
"There are too many bazaars for our investigators to check, so consumers need to be alert and ask questions about where and how the items were prepared," he says. "If a food should be kept hot or cold, and it's room temperature, don't take a chance. Home-canned jams and jellies, fruits and barbecue sauces probably are safe."
Holiday fairs are in their prime during the first two weeks of November. Here are some taking place this weekend:
-- Alki Congregational Church's Country Fair Bazaar, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. today, 6115 S.W. Hinds St. Crafts, bakery, tea room, used books, clothing, lunch from 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m.
-- Auxiliary to the Veterans of Foreign Wars Blackburn-Aurora Post 3348's Flea Market, 8:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. today, VFW Hall, 12327 15th Ave. N.E. Antiques, furniture, tableware, jewelry, clothing, sandwiches.
-- Bead Bazaar, 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. today and 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. tomorrow, Ingraham High School Gym, 1819 N. 135th St. Lambda Rho Alumni and Northwest Bead Society present 150 vendor tables ($2).
-- Children's Hospital Guild Association's Holiday Bazaars, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. today in two locations, Lake Forest Park Towne Centre, 17171 Bothell Way N.E. and Des Moines Methodist Church, 22225 Ninth Ave. S., Des Moines. Handmade products by guild members and independent vendors. Proceeds benefit the uncompensated care program at Children's Hospital & Medical Center.
-- Danish Christmas Bazaar, 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. tomorrow, Danish Center, Meridian Office Building, 1833 N. 105th St., Suite 205. Danish delicacies, including sandwiches and pastries, crafts, imported gifts. Sponsored by the Combined Danish Circles, the Danish Brotherhood and the Danish Sisterhood as a fundraiser for the elderly and for scholarships.
-- Des Moines Yacht Club Arts and Crafts Bazaar, 9:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. today, 22737 Marine View Drive S., Des Moines. All items are handcrafted. Event benefits hunger programs.
-- Federal Way United Methodist Women's Holiday Fair, 9:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. today, 29645 51st Ave. S., Federal Way. Refurbished rocking chairs, needlework, baskets, stuffed animals, pastries.
-- Garden Gate Boutique Arts and Crafts Fair, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. today, Haller Lake Improvement Club, 12579 Densmore Ave. N. Country Creations organized this sale of the work of 70 artists and craftsmen.
-- Green Lake United Methodist Church's Holiday Bazaar, 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. today, First Avenue Northeast and Northeast 65th Street. Arts, crafts and cookbook commemorating the church's 90th aniversary.
-- Hanukkah Arts Gift Sale, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. tomorrow, Herzl-Ner Tamid Conservative Congregation, 3700 E. Mercer Way, Mercer Island. Northwest artists created Judaic and general gift items, including fabric art, jewelry, glass and pottery. A benefit for Jewish programs at the Center for the Prevention of Sexual and Domestic Violence.
-- Highlands Elementary School PTA's Holiday Bazaar, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. today, 2727 N.E. Ninth St., Renton.
-- Holiday Affair Craft Bazaar, sponsored by the Martin Sortun Elementary School PTA, 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. today, 12711 S.E. 248th St., Kent. More than 80 booths of handmade items.
-- Holidays Are Homemade - A Bazaar, 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. today, sponsored by the Women's Ministries at Poulsbo Church of the Nazarene, 22097 Viking Ave. N.W., Poulsbo. Handcrafts, espresso, baked goods.
-- The Holiday Bazaar at the House on the Hill, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. today and 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. tomorrow, 9327 N.E. 142nd St., Bothell. Items handcrafted by 14 women.
-- Holiday Magic, produced by Northwest Shows, 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. today and 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. tomorrow, Meydenbauer Center, 11100 N.E. Sixth St., Bellevue. More than 180 arts, crafts and food booths ($5 adults, $4 seniors, free for children under 10).
-- Holiday Snohomish Saturday Market, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. today, Snohomish High School, Avenue D at Sixth Street, Snohomish. Everything for sale is handmade, home grown or hand gathered. More than 120 artisans will sell jewelry, baskets, furniture, baked goods.
-- Lake Forest Park PTA's Arts & Crafts Bazaar, 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. today, Shoreline Center, 18560 First Ave. N.E. Arts, crafts, food, bake sale, movie for children.
-- Lakewood/Seward Park Community Club's Holiday Fair '94, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. today, 4916 S. Angeline St. Northwest watercolors, jewelry, toys, scarves, personalized books, sweatshirts, note cards, ornmaments and candles. Baked goods and deli lunch. Benefits community-oriented programs.
-- Little Folks Christian School's Holiday Craft Sale, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. today, Redmond Assembly of God, 16601 N.E. 95th St., Redmond. Activities planned to keep preschool children entertained while adults shop the arts and crafts tables.
-- Madrona Holiday Arts and Crafts Festival, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. today and tomorrow, Madrona Elementary School, 33rd Avenue East and East Union Street. Handpainted windsocks, clothing, pottery, handmade cards, jewelry and ornaments. Food and espresso. Free admission, but visitors are asked to bring nonperishable foods to help local needy families. Event sponsored by the Madrona Community Council and Madrona Elementary PTA.
-- Newport Holiday Boutique, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. today, St. Madeleine Sophie Church, 4400 130th Place S.E., Bellevue. Works of 40 artists will be featured in this benefit for the Overlake Service League's assistance program for needy Eastside families.
-- North Kitsap Holiday Festival, 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. today and 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. tomorrow, North Kitsap High School, 1780 N.E. Hostmark St., Poulsbo. The arts and crafts of more than 130 participants from Washington and Oregon will be sold. Proceeds benefit improvement projects at the high school ($3 adults, $2 seniors, free for children 12 and under).
-- Northwest Senior Activity Center's Holiday Bazaar, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. today and 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. tomorrow, 32nd Avenue Northwest and Northwest Market Street. Handmade items, food gifts, pastries.
-- Pythian Sisters and Green Lake Camp of the Royal Neighbors of America's Bazaar, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. today, Ballard Independent Order of Oddfellows Hall, 1706 N.W. Market St.
-- Renton Park PTA's Holiday Craft Fair & Bake Sale, 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. today, 16828 128th Ave. S.E., Renton. Handmade gift items, food and espresso.
-- Russian Community Center's Pre-Christmas Bazaar, noon to 5 p.m. today and tomorrow, 704 19th Ave. E. Piroshki, borscht and Russian pastries, Christmas decorations.
-- Sacred Heart Fellowship Club's Rummage Sale and Bazaar, 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. today and tomorrow, Parish Hall, 160 John St.
-- Salvation Army Home League of Renton's Holiday Food and Craft Fair, 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. today, 720 Tobin St., Renton.
-- Seaview United Methodist Church's Holiday Bazaar, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. today, 4620 S.W. Graham St. Crafts, decorations, foods, gifts.
-- Shoreline Historical Museum's Holiday Bazaar, "Today's Treasures - Tomorrow's Memories," 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. today, 749 N. 175th St. Handcrafts and cafe.
-- Shoreline Senior Activity Center's Holiday Bazaar, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. today, 18560 First Ave. N.E., No. 1. Baked goods, crafts.
-- St. Barnabas Ladies' Guild Annual Holiday Bazaar, 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. today, St. Barnabas Anglican Church, 2340 N. 155th St. Arts, crafts, baked goods, advent wreaths.
-- Third World Craft Fair, 10:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. today and 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. tomorrow, St. Patrick's Catholic Church, 2702 Broadway E. Handcrafts from Asia, Africa, Central America and South America, including baskets, clothing, jewelry, holiday ornaments and UNICEF cards. The fair supports the artists directly or helps fund self-help projects in their countries. Food and baked goods also will be sold.
-- The Women's Group of Emmanuel Presbyterian Church's Holiday Treasures Bazaar, 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. today, 19540 104th Ave. N.E., Bothell. Dried flowers, jewelry, wooden toys, baked goods, decorations.