Mountain Heritage

June 11, 1999

  • When: Friday, June 11, to Sunday, June 13, 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.
  • Where: Sam Michaels Park between Harpers Ferry and Charles Town, W.Va.
  • Admission: $5 for adults and $3 for children ages 6 to 17. Parking is free.
  • Information: No pets or alcoholic beverages will be allowed.
  • more info

By KATE COLEMAN / Staff Writer

Mountain Heritage Arts & Crafts Festival has become a tradition. It began in 1972, designed to promote arts and crafts and to raise funds for projects of the festival sponsor, Jefferson County Chamber of Commerce.

Close to 200 artists and craftspeople will show their creations at the 28th annual event near Harpers Ferry, W.Va., Friday, June 11, to Sunday, June 13, from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.

[cont. from lifestyle]

About 1,000 artists and craftspeople presented their work. Many apply, but few are chosen. Only about 20 percent made the cut.


"We're going after the finest quality," says Mary Via, executive director of Jefferson County Chamber of Commerce.

There are three jurors for each show.

The jurors, who have come from as far away as New York and Georgia, have experience in working in the arts, Via says.

"We've been blessed with really neat judges," she adds.

In order to be judged, the work has to be at the site of the jurying. It can't be mailed, but for a donation and expenses, it can be sent to United Way of Jefferson County. Representatives of the agency will deliver the artwork to the judging and then ship it back to the artist.

A wide range of creations will be offered, including baskets, clothing, decorative painting, folk art, dolls and stuffed animals, dried flowers and herbs, herbal products, furniture, graphic and fine arts, jewelry, leather, sheepskin, metals, musical instruments, photography, pottery, quilts, rugs, stained, beveled, etched and blown glass, toys and wood accessories.

The musical bill of fare is just right for a mountain heritage festival. Master of ceremonies Harold G. "Doc" McMullen describes it as old-time music - traditional music and some bluegrass. The Friday, June 11, program includes Jay Smar and Colin Dunbar & Sleepy Creek. On Saturday, June 11, and Sunday, June 12, Critton Hollow String Band, Patent Pending and The First Generation will perform.

McMullen, 68, a professor of philosophy and ethics at Lord Fairfax Community College, describes his role at the festival as just keeping the trains running on time.

The music, along with the festival, has become a tradition. There haven't been a lot of changes in performers through the years. They are good, they suit the festival's mood, and people enjoy them, McMullen says.

Call Jefferson County Chamber of Commerce at 1-304-725-2055, 1-800-624-0577 or visit on the Internet

If you go: From Hagerstown, take Md. 65 south to Sharpsburg. Take right on Md. 34 to Shepherdstown, W.Va. At four-way stop, take left on German Street. Take a right at Yellow Brick Bank restaurant, then a left onto W.Va. 230. Follow festival signs to Job Corps Road.

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