Need some assistance with checking off that holiday shopping list of yours? Well, the Cape May Artists’ Cooperative Gallery wants to help. So they’ve developed some new handy-dandy holiday promotions that will really jingle your bells.

“We want to encourage more traffic through the gallery (off-season),” says Mary Stewart, board secretary. “Not as much is open, there are not as many people walking around because it (winter) is not as conducive for foot traffic now than during the warmer weather. So we thought we’d give visitors an extra incentive to come see us.”


Don’t be shellfish. Give someone a cute angel ornament made from pyster shells by Lou Riccio.

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That “extra incentive” comes threefold, in the forms of gift cards, wish lists and “friends” promotions.

During the holidays, the Coop, which is composed of 17 Cape May County artists, is offering a gift card promo. Purchase a $50 gift card for that hard-to-shop-for buddy, and get a bonus $10 gift card. The best part? The gift cards don’t expire.

And if you’ve had your eye on that special little something displayed at the Coop, then pop in to fill out a “wish list.”

“You choose the items you want and we’ll help your significant other make your dream come true,” Stewart says. “Some of our regulars can send their spouses in ... and, well, we thought we’d make it easy for them. Fill one out, we’ll keep it and then show the buyer what the giftee is looking for.”

Items for your wish list might include ornaments made from oyster shells by Lou Riccio; seaglass Christmas trees by Catherine Bosna; pendants by Ellen Pfendner that can be personalized with birthstones; and Valerie Waywell’s “pooch portraits” that can be purchased as is or commissioned with your own doggie’s image.

Need more ideas? The Coop also carries a full selection of its members’ work, from original paintings and photography and prints to jewelry and fiber arts, to stained glass, wood carvings and clay to works in paper and mosaics.

If all of this is not enough, the Coop has more. They’ve planned two special “friends” nights of holiday sales: the Holiday Open House and a Guys’ Night Out.

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Ellen Pfendner’s can be purchased as they come or customized with birthstones.

From 6 to 9 p.m. Friday, Dec. 9, join Coop artists for some discounted shopping, free gift wrapping and refreshments.

Men can put the Guys’ Night Out from 6 to 8 p.m., Dec. 16, in their calendars. This night of retail is good for last-minute shoppers and those who just can’t make up their mind what to buy.

“This is where the ‘wish list’ comes in handy. We’ll make the guys look like Mr. Sensitivity,” Stewart laughs. “And we’ll wrap their presents beautifully and they can take full credit.”

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