Santa & Friends: Las Tiendas

Writer Leslie Bay

The minute you enter the Town of Cave Creek, you know you have been transported back in time. You see every touch of the Old West, from the cowboys riding down the pathways to the array of incredible shops, restaurants and art centers that evoke the feeling of the American frontier, alive and well in Arizona!

Las Tiendas offers an eclectic mix of what brings you back to a sense of an Old West community. You know that good ol’ feeling that comes over you when you pull on that favorite comfy pair of boots — it’s the same feeling when you visit Las Tiendas. The minute you walk up, you’ll feel yourself relax. It’s like coming home to friends … you just can’t wait to catch up.

The center is situated in the heart of town. It brings a touch of the Old West with its authentic desert setting and above all, the New West artists who have captured the spirit of Arizona with all of their talents. The shops offer a one-of-a-kind experience, from the award-winning barbecue of Chef Bryan Dooley at Bryan’s Black Mountain Barbecue to the original art offered in every shop. Each shop owner is there to greet you with his or her stories of the West.

You are invited to celebrate with Santa and friends at Las Tiendas in Cave Creek on December 3 from 6 to 8 p.m. Santa Claus is coming to town early, and he isn’t expecting the usual cookie. He’ll be checking out the It’s a Divine Bakery pop-up shop, which is available until the building is completed. Come visit and each child gets a free gingerbread man cookie!

Santa’s helpers, mini ponies, will join him to entertain kids of all ages. These tiny pony helpers will be wearing their finest holiday attire. The ponies love all the brushing and hugs they can get. Plus, what would a holiday soiree be without Charles Dickens Carolers dressed in period costumes, singing the favorites of the season as they stroll the walkways.

As you move down the meandering walkway, Peggy Fredrickson can get you caught up on the history of the Southwest at Western Delights, representing many fine artists of local origin. Your next stop may be Saddle Up Gallery, where Marless Fellows shares her vision of the American West in her paintings. Marless was raised in Arizona and has been a cowgirl her whole life, dating back to the time her grandfather was in the cavalry. Keep on strolling, and you will find jeweler Lisa Baker, owner of Etania Gems and Jewelry. Lisa is part Choctaw, and her grandmother’s heritage has been an inspiring influence since the time Lisa was a small girl. It has been intertwined into Lisa’s life and work, giving her a love of turquoise and gems, and telling a story in her jewelry-making talents. No shopping experience would be complete without that craving for something sweet. Coming soon to Las Tiendas (early 2017) is baker Susan Fiebig and her It’s a Divine Bakery. Although Susan is a cowgirl through and through with her many horses and ranch animals, she trained in Germany and owned cafes in Europe before returning home to her ranch in Cave Creek. Now she brings her baking talents to us, and we look forward to sharing them with you.

If you are a lover of sweets, breads, cookies, pastries and all confections, you will want to visit Susan at her temporary pop-up shop. She will have coffee daily, hot cocoa and cider for the season. As a welcome gift, Susan will be giving out free gingerbread cookies to the kids. Susan is proud to carry gluten-free items, as well.

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