Country Store offers handmade gifts for Christmas

The Country Store gives rural Nebraskans an outlet to sell handmade items just in time for the Christmas season.

This unique store has been an annual tradition for 52 years. "It was actually set up by the Custer Country Crafts Guild, through the Custer County Extension Office," store manager Gaylean Millsap said. "We are open just two months out of the year, and our store moves to a different location each year."

This year, the Country Store is located in the Arrow mini-mall, just off of the main highway in town, and just west of the Arrow Hotel. "We have knitting, woodworking, bead work, and all kinds of sewing items from baby bibs to doll clothes," Millsap said. "There are many ways here that people express themselves with handcrafted things." The store also has a bake sale on Thursdays and Fridays, and the offerings range from cinnamon rolls to kolaches.

The artists come from all over Custer county, including towns like Anselmo. Some of the artists also come from Dunning, Ravenna, and Elsmere. "There are about 15 members of the group involved with the store this year, and we also have about 15 consignors involved," Millsap said.

Millsap says this store is important to the crafters. "It gives people an outlet, to make some extra money. It also gives buyers a chance to get a unique Christmas gift. People enjoy getting things that are handmade," Millsap said.

The store will be open now until Christmas Eve at the Arrow mini-mall, Monday through Saturday, from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.