(Nov. 20, 2020) Looking to illuminate the holidays, while also providing funding for infants in need, the Kiwanis Club of Greater Ocean Pines-Ocean City is selling handmade lanterns at the Ocean Pines Farmers and Artisans Market.
Available in two sizes, the woodcrafts will be on sale through the end of December at the Farmers Market on Saturdays from 9 a.m. until noon in White Horse Park.
The lantern fundraiser is the brainchild of Kiwanis member Jim Spicknall.
“I just started it up during the pandemic,” he said. “Originally, it was for gifts for friends and family.”
Large lanterns, which are battery-operated with a remote power control and alternating light patterns, are available for $40, while a slightly smaller solar model cost $30.
“The larger ones I designed to either have a battery candle in them or … what they call sprinkle lights or fairy lights,” he said. “They go in the big lanterns and give different light patterns.”
The design, in addition to remote on-and-off capabilities, also includes four-sided lenses that can display decorative patterns.
“We also did some holiday cutouts to put on and spice them up a little bit,” he said.
Spicknall said inserts could be swapped out to mark seasonal moments or holidays.
“Usually, I have about six or eight cutouts for one to two dollars,” he said. “You can buy some cutouts along with the lantern.”
Spicknall has two designs for the battery-powered lanterns: “Peace on Earth,” with a red bow and fir tree, and “Fall,” with a brown bow and leaves.
Searching for a way to spur community support for the club’s charitable endeavors, Spicknall thought the DIY craft item might prove popular as a holiday gift.
“I looked into doing retail sales to donate back to our fundraisers for Kiwanis,” he said. “We’ve really been cut out off from fundraising by the pandemic.”
Lantern sale proceeds are being dedicated for the Kiwanis “Priority One” program, which supports Worcester G.O.L.D. [Giving Other Lives Dignity] in distributing items for parents of infants and young children.
“It’s for infant children that are in need in Snow Hill,” he said. “It’s something that Kiwanis has been doing with Worcester G.O.L.D. and we donate directly to the county.”
Spicknall said whipping out the custom made lanterns was relatively easy after obtaining project schematics online.
“I would call myself a handyman,” he said. “I’ve been making some small woodworking projects for my grandkids over the years.”
The creative undertaking also provided an excuse for Spicknall to buy additional woodworking tools.
“I have a chop saw, which you can cut cross-cuts with, and then I bought a little table saw, which I can cut angles with and all kinds of different cuts,” he said.
Spicknall said the expanded tool shed roster might inspire distinctive handicrafts in the future.
“I may be doing more now since I have bought some equipment,” he said. “It’s trial and error, but you have to be a little bit of a handyman so that you don’t cut your fingers off.”
Lanterns can be purchased at the Ocean Pines Farmers and Artisans Market on Saturdays from 9 a.m. to noon or by calling Spicknall at 301-580-0377.