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In-Person Houston Ballet Nutcracker Market 2020 Canceled

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The 2020 Virtual Nutcracker Market will launch on November 11.

In-Person Houston Ballet Nutcracker Market 2020 Canceled

The Houston Ballet Nutcracker Market has pivoted to an online shopping event for the 2020 holiday season in response to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. The previously scheduled in-person event, set for November 11-15 at NRG Center, has been canceled.

The 2020 Virtual Nutcracker Market will launch on November 11, offering Nutcracker Market shoppers a new way to kick off the holiday season, support their favorite merchants, and contribute to Houston Ballet.

"Despite our best efforts, there simply was not a feasible way to host a safe event at the level that our merchants and shoppers expect and deserve," said Patsy Chapman, CEO of Houston Ballet Nutcracker Market. "While we remained hopeful for our event to continue as planned, this is the best decision for the health and safety of everyone involved. With that said, we are very excited about reimagining Nutcracker Market as an online shopping event and we hope our shoppers and community will join us virtually to experience this beloved holiday tradition. Continued support during this especially difficult time is greatly appreciated by everyone involved with Nutcracker Market, including our wonderful merchants and Houston Ballet Foundation."

The 2020 Virtual Nutcracker Market will run on a dedicated platform November 11, 2020 through December 11, 2020. To date, nearly 200 merchants have signed on to participate in the 2020 Virtual Nutcracker Market, including fan favorites such as Two Tequila Sisters, Sassy Cups, and Copper Kettle Popcorn, as well as several merchants making their Nutcracker Market debut, including Boone Branch, The Incredible Christmas Place, and Parker & Hyde.

Opening day of the Virtual Market, November 11, will be Wells Fargo Early Bird Day. Early Bird access is $30, and shoppers will get first dibs on all the incredible merchandise, plus exclusive Early Bird Day-only offerings including discounts, promotions, and giveaways. Early Bird shoppers will also receive continued access into the Virtual Market every day through December 11.

Starting on November 12, all shoppers will have access to the Virtual Market at no cost and will have continued access to shop the Market through December 11. Eleven percent of all merchandise sales, plus the proceeds from Early Bird Day, supports the various programs of Houston Ballet, its Academy and scholarship programs.

Online shoppers will be able to shop merchants from across the country, showcasing unique holiday items, home décor, gourmet food, apparel, jewelry, toys, accessories, pet items, candles and more. The virtual event will take place on a dedicated shopping platform, providing both shoppers and merchants a seamless shopping experience. This is a change from the Virtual 2020 Spring Nutcracker Marketplace, which was accessible via Facebook.

"Even without the in-person event this year, it's exciting to see all The Miracles the Nutcracker Market team have come up with to reimagine the Nutcracker experience," said Stanton Welch, Houston Ballet Artistic Director. "It goes without saying how important the Nutcracker Market is to Houston Ballet and for all the opportunities they give us through this extraordinary philanthropic event. Thank you to all the volunteers and staff who are working to create a virtual winter wonderland."

Houston Ballet Nutcracker Market is the largest single fundraising event for Houston Ballet. Given the challenges of 2020, including the cancellation of Nutcracker Market SPRING earlier this year, Houston Ballet and Nutcracker Market need the support of the community now more than ever to keep the arts alive, retain its staff, and help getting its dancers back on stage.

"We thank everyone who has been rallying behind Nutcracker Market," said Chapman. "This is not what we envisioned for our 40th year, but we look forward to celebrating in person and in style with our fans and supporters again next year. Until then, we hope we can count on our shoppers to join us virtually."

Since 1981, Nutcracker Market has raised $74.2 million dollars for the Houston Ballet Foundation and has secured its position as the unofficial kick off to the holidays in Houston. Nutcracker Market recognizes and thanks the loyal shoppers, merchants, volunteers, committee members, staff, vendors, and supporters.

With the funds raised in 2019, 74,000 Houston-area students were exposed to ballet through the Academy's Education and Community Engagement programs, $942,870 was awarded to approximately 246 students this past season to continue their dream of studying dance at Houston Ballet Academy, and students from nearly 368 Houston-area schools and community centers got their first opportunity to see ballet and hear from dancers through free programming, performances and classes at Houston Ballet's prestigious Center for Dance.

For more information, call 713-535-3231 or visit

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