Pa. crafts fair attracts big crowd

July 11, 2004|by JULIE E. GREENE


Two years ago, when Chambersburg, Pa., resident Jeanne Amick and her husband were dating, he brought her to the Friends of Caledonia Arts and Crafts Fair.

Amick, 54, liked the one-day event so much she returned this year and found some bargains.

"This is an incredible buy," said Amick, holding up a large grapevine wreath with silk flowers that she bought for $15.95. That wreath would have cost twice as much at the craft fair she was at two weeks ago in Berryville, Va., she said.

"The prices I've encountered here are excellent compared to the ones further south," she said Saturday.

Amick was among more than 11,000 people estimated to have visited the 23rd annual arts and crafts fair sponsored by the volunteer, nonprofit group, organizers said.


The Friends group uses proceeds from vendor fees and T-shirt and cap sales to support the park. In the past, the group has used the money to provide benches and playground equipment, President Ed Bolt said.

The fair usually raises $4,000, said Bolt's wife, Leah, who is the group's treasurer and secretary.

More than 200 craft vendors had booths at the fair selling items such as colored buckets with personalized designs, hot mitts and toaster covers, birdhouses on poles, braided rugs, homemade rag dolls and dolls that had bag holders under their dresses.

R. Craig Fowler, 56, of Chambersburg, was selling wind chimes, Christmas ornaments, key chains and bud vases made from antique silver-plated utensils.

Fowler said some people send him their family's old silverware to turn into ornaments and the like for family members.

Betty Newport, 82, of York, Pa., and her daughter, Dianne Newport, 55, have a cabin in the area and visit Kathy Boyland's booth every year to buy Christmas gifts.

Boyland, 46, of Ijamsville, Md., uses feathers and plants to press images in clay. In addition to selling the clay impressions as wall hangings, she takes pictures of the impressions to sell as prints and notecards.

B&J Cook Crafts specializes in NASCAR and National Football League crafts, such as needlepoint fly swatters that smack the fly with a NASCAR driver's number.

Bill and Joyce Cook of Chambersburg also sell fabric footballs for $4.50, which suited 16-month-old Noah Keener of Spring Grove, Pa., just fine.

Noah gurgled and giggled with satisfied joy after his Pappy, Larry Keener of Chambersburg, bought him a fabric football with a Dallas Cowboys pattern.

When asked if Noah was a Cowboys fan, his Grammy, Cathy Keener, said, "He's going to be whether he likes it or not." That's because Noah's dad, Brent Keener, 33, is a Cowboys fan.

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