The Berea Craft Festival is still going strong.
The annual event begins Friday and runs through Sunday at Indian Fort Theatre. More than 110 artists from 16 states will be part of this year’s event.
Success of the festival comes from including the artists that have attended for a number of years and have a following and the artists that are new to Berea. Newcomers include artists in watercolors, fiber and 2D mixed mediums. Festival organizers agree that this mixture has something for everyone.
Three days of food and entertainment, all while discovering the artistry of craftspeople, a mix of new and old techniques, traditional and modern items, make the event a representation of very unique, functional works. The festival prides itself on the quality offerings it brings to central Kentucky.
“The initial feeling is set by the amazing forest that houses the artists and entertainers. The beauty of the setting is the perfect companion to the amazing work that artists bring to the grounds”, said Melissa Gross, longtime festival enthusiast.
The Berea Craft Festival is a hub for woodcarvers, potters and leatherworkers. Festival-goers are offered the opportunity to witness and participate in educational craft demonstrations.
This year’s demonstrations will be in the areas of blacksmithing, weaving, silver-smithing, ceramics and vegetable yarn dye-ing.
Connections to the art and going home is found when the experience includes seeing who actually made the designed piece.
Gifts of all kinds abound in the form of jewelry, leather, ceramics and kitchen accessories. Handmade furniture that can be a family heirloom for generations to come will be displayed at the festival in the traditional and primitive styles. Children’s clothing, scarves and felt creatures will be beautifully crafted new wares.
Chidren’s crafts are housed under their own tent for many messy and imaginative opportunities. Marbling paper, repurposing paper for collages, and hand decorations are offered at no cost for the young people to show off their creative genius.
Entertainment and Food
Entertainment and food have been a huge part of the festival’s draw, and there will be a variety of both again this summer. Operating in-and-around several different performance areas, musicians representing a number of musical styles will stroll about the guests and break into song or dance.
There will be Bluegrass music, the Berea Festival Dancers, Carla Gover with Zoe Speaks, Grits and Soul, and Donna and Lewis Lamb.
Musician and storyteller Mitch Barrett, a Telluride Festival winner, will return for his 38th year.
Food favorites will include artisanal coffee, lemonade, Carolina BBQ, veggie burgers, grilled beef and or vegetable baguettes and flavored ice drinks.