The Show Promoters Blog
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Small Beginnings :
The Mountain Artisans Art &
Craft Shows started in Macon County in 1987.
Only 8 artisans exhibited at the first Christmas craft
show in Franklin. We never imagined that, down the
road, we were headed to the wonderful Ramsey
Center on the Western Carolina University campus in
Cullowhee, North Carolina!
It is just a dream come
true. As the years have flown by, more and more artisans
wanted a good place to sell their hand work and
So many of our small
businesses have been sent overseas but there are no
imports here. The southern craftsman is alive and
well in this area. Many of the heritage crafts are
handed down from the older generation. The quilting,
pine needle baskets, blacksmithing, clay art, folk
dolls, corn shuck flowers, broom corn brooms, carved
spirit sticks, and primitive furniture were inspired
from past generations.
You will find it all here.
Art and Crafts Shows provide a
marketplace for customers and artisan to meet. It is an amazing
collection under one roof. You would have to visit dozens
of shows to
find what I have gathered at one place.
Cullowhee, North Carolina is home
to the Western Carolina University. On the campus is the Ramsey
Center arena that boasts 18,000 square feet of climate controlled
comfort for everyone. It is home to the Catamount's
basketball games but two times each year , they move over for
our craft shows. A great set up crew makes it all look easy for
Quaint Cullowhee Valley nestles off Highway 107
that runs up to Cashiers, North Carolina from Sylva. It is a
stop off the Southern
Highroads Trail highway.
All around are big, soft mountains. A foot bridge crosses the Cullowhee Creek to get
to the show from the parking lot. It is peaceful to your soul to be here.
For Summertime 2014
The sidewalk leading up to the big Catamount door entrance
has a sample
of the quality artisans inside. Look for:
- Doreyl Ammons, catchthespirit , will be demonstrating pastel paintings.
She is preparing
some new creations for this year's summer. Look for
small limited edition fine art prints under non-reflective
glass on a stand. The art includes details from her new
mural: trillium, larkspur, butterflies, birds, horses and
groundhogs. There will be townscapes and landscapes
- Wesley Angel's
blacksmith creations will be back on the corner. His
hand forged candlestick holders, mirrors
- and custom
accessories feature nature designs. This year, he
will be adding yard art creations .He will be
- showing some of his skills as he
demonstrates this vanishing heritage craft.
- His daughter, Colleen Angel is
very talented too. She will be showing off her painted furniture, next door to
- Right beside them will be Ken Di Rico's Smoky Mountain
delicious kettle popcorn. (I sample popcorn from
many places and his is "tops").
- For the summer, John Bauknecht,
chain saw bear carver, will be at the Whistle Stop
Franklin. He will be
- back for the November show.
- Meanwhile, enjoy Jimmy and Marlene
Hopkins colorful yard art. Remember the big
- birds that dress up your place?
- .No one can turn a gasoline can into a
piece of folk art like Bobby
Bearden ! He will be back with his pigs and
- cat recycled inventions.
- Woodcrafter Jason Becker makes
swinging chairs and tables .You are going to enjoy them for
the warm weather relaxing areas.
- Joshua Grant's banjos and frettes
are going to be here if you are hankering to strum a tune.
Wait, his banjos are gourds !
- Jan Kleinrath
allthingscanvas will be back with canvas bags and hats
.If you are heading to the beach, be sure to stop by her
- Daniel BrownDB'sGlassShack is an
artist with stained glass and mirror holders that are
- Henry and Alice Hoover are coming
back with the fun canjoes and the Tennessee music box .
They can teach
- you how to play pretty good music from a spam
- Update : Mr. Charles Wells, glass blowing
demonstration , will be delayed until the 'Hard Candy
Christmas' show .
- Sculpture, artist Jim Gunter will
be back again with his
rock carvings .
- Kathy Cirka BackwoodsBakery
will be baking up organic bread and cookies. How about
- brownies and carmel popcorn ?
- Kerry Marsh is an amazing
flint knapper and lithic artist .He will be demonstrating carvings
of arrowheads and
- rock artifacts .
- Tony Barrett WorshipWear is bringing Christian
design t-shirts .Your youth group is going to love these!
- A.W. Ruff will be bringing his
cutting boards and this year. He will have bird houses..
The entrance tunnel has some exciting
First artisan inside the door is favored potter, Sue Malsnee. She has many area collectors of her work. They will be glad to find
her newest designs and original glazes.
Another return artisan team is Alan and
Nancy Stegall .They will be bringing back their functional
clay creations .
- Dogwood Crafters from
Dillsboro will be selling samples from their unique shop.
They feature handcrafts from the mountain area, also.
- Steven Rich and David Walker
recycle planks from yesterday's barns into creative
birdhouses and feeders.
- Arena :
- Good live music lifts
- There will be live guitar
music floating from the fingers of Macon County's
- He will be playing the old
tunes we grew up with and selling his cd's.
The pottery section includes :Tim Moran and Janet
Gaddy Celtic Designs with their wheel thrown pottery featuring
Celtic motifs and crystalline glazes.
'Milton's Mugs " is a clay
partnership endeavor of Robby Railey and Michelle
Walker . They have face mugs as well as
We have a good selection of
Specialty foods and sweets :New this year:
Old Salem packaged Moravian cookies ,baked
goods and Moravian stars and angels.
Good News : Betty Lambert's Chocolate
Jelly is coming back ! You who fell in love with all the unique
are going to be happy to get more !
- Kathy Nash Serendipity will be back with her
heirloom nut brittle goodies. It is a fast seller.
- Terri Cook's Delightful Dips
was a hit last show and will be back with her homemade dips, mixes and
- meat rubs. (I noticed lime chiffon pie mix on
her web site).
- Heritage Soap:
- Bill Reed Freedom Farms
is coming back with his
milk soap. And his personal grooming
- Tim Trescott
beelitecandles will have a line of bees wax and soy
candles, and homemade soaps .Maybe some
- honey, too.
- Elizabeth Lilley Spreadthelove
LipBalm is the queen of the all natural lip balms.
Get ready for some scrumptious
- Rivers Marchesoni handcrafts
soaps ,salves, and crochets gifts .
- Laura Craig Shade Tree
Farm soap maker will have some new
delicious new flavors .
- Doll Makers:
- Corn shuck flowers date back to the
early settlers. Betty Cabe is preserving this
heritage craft .She will demonstrating and selling her colorful
bouquets. She has some of the best shuck dolls I have
- Elly Davey's a bird in hand folk
figure is our featured
art piece this year ! Her tiny dancing lady has a hickory nut head .She tenderly
dresses each one with attention to detail . She has many
collectors who look for new creations
crafts : Molly McCurdy makes and plays
dulcimers . She will be here to teach you how easy it is to
- Animals from recycled railroad spikes ? Yes, a
whole farm from Rich and Rhonda Peters.Coppins
Critters You will
love these little creatures!
- I hear there are going
to be a new addition for summer : bumblebees !
- Just got the news that Susan Mick
will be coming back with her bark frames. Her natural
materials are used both for pictures and mirrors.
- John Adams is a heritage broomsquire from Alabama. He will be selling and demonstrating
his brooms and
- wood turned pens.
- Brenda Jones woodenitbelovely is returning with her
children's name puzzles.
- Leslie Samuels
is a schooled artist .She will be
bringing lovely painted scarves, mosaics and sea glass
- Laura Schnelker turns into wool
into art . She will have rugs, pins and pincushions .
- Jean Markley MissEmDesigns
is a floral designer with silks and preserved flowers. She
will delight your houseguests with lovely designs.
- Valerie Holden will be
back with her bow wreaths to dress up your porch and kitchen.
- Danny Robinson is a member of the Southern Highlands Guild
who shapes knives from throwaway files and saws. Look for
- outstanding workmanship.
We have attracted some wonderful
fine artists and painters for this show such as:
Folk artist Suzan Buckner is an Alabama
who will be bringing her amazing art.
Peyton Foster is an artist who captures the
mountains in acrylic.
Nancy Moore is a popular folk painter in
our area. She decorates her handmade baskets , gourds and windows . She
is only here
for the summer show ,so don't miss her wonderful
Award winning artist Joe Meigs will be
here with his photography and paintings .
All Jessie K. Collins
customers will be thrilled that she is coming over to Cullowhee.
She is a Georgia watercolorist , will be who will have a good
selection of new rabbit prints, wildlife paintings, and
topographic maps .
- Elizabeth McAfee's delightful
animal watercolors are coming back ! Her studio cat, Sandy,
- in each painting . Her creations are
doing all sorts of capers like golfing , cooking and
dancing to our delight .
- Alan R Young ,will be back with
his award winning wildlife
- Macon County's own watercolorist, Michael
M. Rogers http://www.sharethebeauty.tv will be bringing his
summer collection of art to this show .(He was one of the first artist
who started this show with me in 1987. ) He is an avid hiker of
the trails of our beautiful area. Come with him as he
captures waterfalls, flowers and views on canvas and video. You will be able to take a piece of
mountains back home with you
- Jeanne Mack , a popular
southern southern artist, with originals and giclees.
She is a cat lover/rescuer also.
artist, Michele Alcock,Micheles Garden Girls
is coming back to this show !
With dried flower petals and things found in nature, she
dainty garden ladies. See her on facebook.com/micheles
- Have you been looking for some hand
painted cake carriers ? Melva Huffstetler The Painted
Lady will have a good selection of wood and glass
accessories for gifts and yourself !
- The fabric art category is looking is
looking good :Ann Warren has been quilting a
long time . She will be demonstrating lap quilting and rug
- Animal lover and artist Ri Noel
Tarpoll has won my heart with her lovely work . She
will present them on 100% organic cotton
sweaters and tees with her paintings on them.
- Susan Kennedy: quilted designer
purses and Mark's photography.
- Gretchen Branning:
purses; each one created from a man's neck tie.
- Norma Jean Corhn:
18' inch doll dresses and more ..
- Linda Levy is busy right now
quilting up a storm to have a wonderful display for June
.Look for wall hangings, baby quilts and accessories.
- Another fine quilter coming is
Gretchen Kapity. She will have quilts and kitchen towels
- Bill and Linda Van Order only come
to the summer show with their Beary Hill Bears for their
collectors .Linda sews some practical accessories that are
hard to find .
- Linda Owens is new this year with
unique tie dyed clothing for young and old. Also house wares
just made for you.
- Dora Reynolds is a hit each show
with her bright colorful fabric plates and bowls.
- Remember the old fashioned rag rugs ?
Rena Wilkins will be demonstrating this vanishing craft.
She will have a good selection for you .
- Rae Hancock is a rock candle
artist. Her creations burn on smokeless oil that you
can buy .
- The wood craftsmen at
this show are some of the best around:
- Howard Baxla is a wood craftsman
who has come out of retirement to make us some functional
chairs and other crafts.
- Joyce Thisse is an intarsia and fretwork
artist. She is new this year with Christmas ornaments ,too.
- I found the best wood crafted
children's toys ever a few years back .I never gave up
until they came to our
- show . Val and Al Oliveira
make a wide variety of trains, wagons, and cars . If you are
tired of plastic stuff. you are going to love their quality
- Jerry's Custom Woodcrafts is coming from
Tennessee to bring their handcrafted log furniture.
- Gerald and Ruth Bleniek owners
.See pictures above .
- Dennis and Judy Wilkey are
favorites each show with fine wood turnings ,gifts and jewelry.
- Ron Thompson/ is a master wood
turner from regional wood . (I was given a set of apple wood bowls
that I cherish).
- Ken Rudd's customers buys his potato boxes and waste cans like
crazy . They are hard to find .
- Steve Simonelli is a fine, fine
wood crafter who is famous for his beautiful rocker chairs
and boxes .
- Jim and Susan Edwards Keepsakes
make scroll saw baskets, trivets, ornaments and toys .
- The knitters are in vogue right now:
Tolotti: Laura's Butterflies scarves and hats
- William T. & Nancy Smith: shawls, yarn, pins and accessories.
- Connie Anderson's colorful hairpin lace scarves
are a hit .She will be back with
shawls, and necklaces, too.
- Rivers Marchesori will be showing off her
hand crocheted gifts and hand made soaps and salves.
- The Glass artists are unique: Breaking
News: Tadashi Torri , master glass blower, is taking an
assignment in Germany and moving there soon. He is offering
his work ,even gallery pieces at this show .Look for
his booth in the back for unsurpassed bargains !
- Janet AndersonWildFiredGlass
is coming back with
her original glass art both fused and slumped .
- Mike Smithwick is coming back with
his wine bottle lanterns and etched glassware and more
- We have some of the most skilled jewelers
from our area and far away:
- New this year is Janet L.
Simons Dean . She is a hat maker and vintage jewelry
- Peggy and Grady Nolan come every
year with their vintage silver spoon craft jewelry and
chimes. They are always a hit with one of a kind pieces.
- Ellen Speed makes
amazing accessories from soda cans. What fun!
- Donna Rainey Artworkzstudio
a fine wire wrapper. She is coming a long way to bring her
skillful designs! And some neat photography .
- Lauren Yates mixes metal
work with her designs.
Dodge is new this year . She has some lovely ,original
designs ,you will be proud to wear.
Neal Hearn boxesbyneal
and Nanci Hearn sylvia &vivian will be back with Neal's glass boxes . Each one is an original
with gem stones or specially crafted glass . Wife, Nanci
has a line of handcrafted gemstone jewelry you are sure to enjoy
Esta Miller and John Mike will be
new this year with Kumihimo -Japaneese braided jewelry and
Viking wire weaving..
Lane and Shelvia Whitley will be back
with their poured pewter jewelry and ornaments .
Favorite Joy WhitneyBeadsWireNature will
have original necklaces and earrings for her fans.
The show is filled . I am proud of every vendor
Come shop from our American artists. They need
your support . They are
the best around!