Jingle Bells

The 2022 Nutcracker Market Will Introduce 50 New Shops to NRG

The annual event taking place at the NRG Center boasts 270 vendors this year.

By Shelby Stewart

The countdown to the Nutcracker Market has begun. 

Honestly, how many places in Houston can you find handcrafted holiday trinkets, high fashion winter garb, and hundreds of nostalgia-inducing wooden nutcrackers?  

As far as we know, there’s only one: the Nutcracker Market, which will return to NRG Park on November 10 for its 42nd annual event. “We are already counting down the days until we get to cut the ribbon on this year’s Market,” said Patsy Chapman, CEO of Houston Ballet Nutcracker Market, in a statement.  

The three-day bazaar will take over NRG Center with 270 booths filled with holiday cheer. Among the  50 new booths, you’ll find customizable “hat bar” Topped Hats, picnic basket specialists Primeware Inc., self-care aficionados  Musee Bath, and customized wooden charcuterie and cutting boards crafted by Drapela Works. Seasoned market-goers can anticipate the usual suspects like Anything Bling Boutique, Marye-Kelley, Tootsies, and The Round Top Collection.  

Kitchen goods will be on sale at the Nutcracker Market. 

 

The Nutcracker Market famously encourages Houstonians to give back to the Houston Ballet Foundation, the Academy, and all of its scholarship programs. Eleven percent of both the merchandise sold and admission tickets go towards the ballet. Beyond the can’t-miss shopping, the market includes a long list of notable events like the early access Wells Fargo Preview Party, plus the Saks Fifth Avenue and Macy’s fashion shows and luncheons. 

Last year was the market’s grand in-person return following its virtual market during the pandemic. The 2021 market welcomed roughly 78,000 shoppers who spent $19 million in four days. Organizers expect this year's market to make an even bigger impact. 

As the CEO, Chapman has led the quintessential holiday event for 34 years, helping to contribute more than $80 million to the Houston Ballet Foundation. This year will mark her last year at the helm of Houston’s holiday shopping extravaganza. In honor of her exit, Chapman will be recognized as the Market Honoree, allowing staff, volunteers, merchants, and guests to celebrate her career and commitment to Houston. Casey Rowe, the longtime Houston Ballet’s Guild and the market committee member, will serve as the market chairman. 

“We know this event is circled on calendars across Houston all year long, and we are just as excited as anyone to get back into NRG Center each November to take in everything new and revisit the booths we already know and love. Our merchants, shoppers, and supporters turn out in such a big way and we can’t wait to see them all,” Chapman said.

Market organizers pro-tip to prepare for the market? Buy the discount general admission tickets on Ticketmaster for $18 (not including fees), or purchase a $20 ticket from participating H-E-B locations. Early bird tickets are also available for $60, which are available by calling 713-535-3231 by November 4. Early Bird tickets allow for 8:30 a.m. admission on Thursday, November 10, and Friday, November 11, as well as repeat admission on all four days of the Market.

 

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