After the Tour I polled our artists on how the Tour went for them. The replies were outstandingly positive - “a wow” with “tons of visitors,” “an incredible experience,” “explosive energy,” “gratifying to see so many people, young and old, artists and non-artists, old friends and new,” “fantabulous!”
Stories poured in. Blacksmith Eric Johnson was recovering from cataract surgery the previous day ”so I took it easy and talked with new customers and reunited with many many people. Lots of hugs and a boatload of thankfulness. On Sunday, a new visitor asked me if I knew anything about the Lewis and Clark expedition and the guns that were made for them at Harpers Ferry. Long story short, I told him I not only knew about them and studied them in my Park Ranger past, but that I had just built one last winter while recovering from leg surgery. I showed it to him and he asked me to make him one!!! I was one of the lead historians when we celebrated their anniversary and built the exhibition in the Park. I hand forged most of the iron pieces for the exhibit including 2 60’ iron framed canoes. What a way to finish the weekend!”
Woodcarver Nancy Streeter remet a woman that helped her get her first rescue German Shepherd in the mid 90’s. “We’re now on rescue’s number 10 and 11” she says. Professional Cartoonist and Graphic Novelist Danielle Corsetto says “One of my favorite parts of this year’s tour in my home was showing off fellow local artists’ work. My housemate Mark, who used to run Flower Haus, made six exquisite floral arrangements (see photo) for us!! And he put all of the bouquets in vases made by Joy Bridy, so a bit of Joy was here despite her not being physically present. I put up the hand painted sign that my friend Shane Harris made of my name while he was practicing gold leaf techniques. I may have shown off everyone else’s work more than my own, to be honest!”
Danielle also reports that “it was such a pleasure to see a flow of Potter Esther Murphy’s friends and fans pour into the house early on Saturday! And I was surprised to be visited by a favorite yoga teacher I’d lost touch with after Jala closed, and delighted to see her pop out of Weaver Denise Ray’s room snuggling one of her handwoven rugs - she was over the moon.“
At Wool Artist Bridget Brown’s “it was Farm fun, hot dogs on the fire pit, hot cider in the cozy wool shop, mill tours met with awe, amazement, wonder and general appreciation of what we do. Casual strollers about the farm seeing everything we have to see. One of my favorite things to see is my beacon of a Porta-John in front of our barn surrounded by a gazillion visitors cars! “
Let’s have a round of enthusiastic applause for the artists, the volunteers and especially for our fans, supporters, influencers. It truly takes a village..