Marketplace cancelled due to COVID-19 crisis

Published: Wednesday, September 22, 2021

Due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, the Northeast Georgia Health System (NGHS) Auxiliary has made the decision to not hold an in-person Marketplace event this year in an effort to keep everyone safe and support NGHS’ mission of “improving the health of our community.”

Marketplace is an annual holiday shopping event that raises funds for Safe Kids Northeast Georgia – an organization that keeps children and teenagers in our community safe by providing education, such as suicide prevention programs, and providing safety equipment like helmets, car seats, life jackets and more.

“While we were all eager to celebrate the 30th anniversary of Marketplace, we know canceling the event was the right decision to make for the health of our community and our frontline workers,” said Natalie Challen, Marketplace tri-chair. “We are immensely grateful to all the local merchants and those from across the Southeast who committed to participating, and we hope to see them next year.”

This marks the second year the event has been canceled due to COVID-19. Marketplace was scheduled for November 4-6, 2021 at the Ramsey Conference Center at Lanier Technical College.

“Marketplace is a treasured holiday tradition that we all look forward to each year,” said Katie Crumley, incoming NGHS Auxiliary president. “While we are disappointed to cancel Marketplace again, we look forward to returning to more normalcy in the future and appreciate all our community is doing to support NGHS and our healthcare heroes. The safety of our children is especially important during times like these, and we are grateful to all sponsors for their support of Safe Kids Northeast Georgia. We’d like to give a special thanks to presenting sponsor Willis Investment Council for supporting Marketplace for the 13th consecutive year.”

“Generous support from individuals and corporations gives NGHS the edge of excellence it is known for, and we are called upon to continue this financial support that benefits every family in our community,” said Bob Willis, chief investment officer and CEO for Willis Investment Counsel. “It is simply the right thing to do.”

For more information about the impact of Safe Kids and how you can donate, please visit or contact the Auxiliary at 770-219-1830.

About Safe Kids Northeast Georgia

Created in 1992, Safe Kids Northeast Georgia is one of 30 coalitions in Georgia dedicated to the prevention of accidental injuries, a leading killer of children 14 and younger. Through a local coalition made up of 130 members representing more than 30 community agencies, Safe Kids provides safety equipment and education in injury areas such as child passenger safety, water safety, fire safety, wheeled sports safety and more, reaching more than 50,000 children, family members, teachers and caregivers annually. For more information, please call 770-219-8095 or follow us on Facebook.