Chris Stranahan, owner of Wild Birds Unlimited on Howe Avenue in the Staples Plaza, Cuyahoga Falls, talked about his store's first holiday market. It's essentially a store within a store, with local and handmade items by 14 different craftspeople. The Portage Trail Barn Holiday Market used to be held in a real barn on, you guessed it, Portage Trail. It's now been moved to the heated and therefore more comfortable environs of the store, and it's a charming way to buy nature-themed gifts and holiday decorations, among other seasonal items. Hours are 10 to 6 Monday through Saturday and noon to 5 on Sunday. You can find out more by calling the store at 330.922.4990 or by visiting the Wild Birds Unlimited website.
Carli Molinelli, events and marketing coordinator for the Akron Zoo, talked about Wild Lights, the zoo's extravaganza of holiday displays, light shows and live entertainment. The event continues through Dec. 30. After Christmas, the Santa Land section gets transformed into a crafts area with plenty of handmade gift items and, for the kids, photo opportunities with cutout characters. Speaking of characters, there will be a galactic princess, warrior and villain roaming around the zoo. There also will be carolers every night. For admission prices and a schedule of these and other events, visit the zoo's website.
Keith Jones, lead tech for J.R. Shoup Locksmiths, has been in the locksmith business for 51 years. Shoup has been installing and fixing locks and other security devices for nearly 110 years, which is no small feat either. Keith talked about securing your home this holiday season, including putting timers on your lights so that would-be burglars will think you're at home. He also talked about new security devices such as the doorbell cameras that deter nefarious people from taking your packages off your stoop. The cameras are operated with your smart phone, which will alert you to a possible thief and even let you yell at the person through your phone. Pretty cool. To reach Shoup, call 330.434.4026.