WANT TO GO?
Mountain State Art and Craft Fair
WHEN: 9 a.m. to 7 p.m. Thursday through Saturday
WHERE: Cedar Lakes, Ripley
TICKETS: Adults $6, seniors $5, children (6-12) $2, children under 6 free
INFO: 304-372-3247 or www.msacf.comCHARLESTON, W.Va. -- Stained glass artist David Houser of Preston County first showed his work at the Mountain State Art and Craft Fair in 1982. Since then, he's been there every year except 1995.
The annual showcase of Appalachian artists, craftspeople, traditions and foods runs Thursday through Saturday at Cedar Lakes in Ripley.
Houser has seen a lot of changes in artisans, trends in the types of arts and crafts shown and ups and downs in attendance. He dubs the interactive booths added to the program about five years ago one of the most significant changes.
In the booths, artisans provide the materials and instruction for people to make a broom or a stained glass cube, make a basket or rag potholder, imprint paper with a fern, rubberstamp a bookmark or quilt a pincushion, among other things.
"I'll take four people on the hour," Houser said. "We'll make three-inch stained glass cubes."
Houser's wife mans the booth where they exhibit and sell his glass ornaments, panels and kaleidoscopes, but his festival days are filled with instruction time. He enjoys his teaching role and encourages other artisans to give it a try.
"I enjoy seeing people make something new. It's an introduction for them," he said. "And who knows if we might get some new recruits along the way.