Author Archive for Don Mertz

Artistry in Wood 2016 — Show Report

Home Again!

By Don Mertz

Pho­tos by Carl Saathoff

The 2017 edi­tion of the Day­ton Artistry in Wood show was host­ed at the Roberts Cen­tre, Wilm­ing­ton, OH the sec­ond week­end of Octo­ber. 

Even though Artistry in Wood Show has a new home, in the sec­ond year at the Roberts Cen­tre, exhibitors and vis­i­tors alike expe­ri­enced the feel­ing of being “Home Again.”  Artistry in Wood “just feels right” once again as it con­tin­ues its lega­cy of being one of the pre­mier wood­carv­ing and wood­work­ing show in the Unit­ed States. The Home Again feel­ing was expe­ri­enced in the friend­ly atmos­phere of friend meet­ing friend as if for the first time or as long­time friends reunit­ed.  There was a “fam­i­ly” feel­ing while shar­ing one another’s joys, shar­ing a com­mon con­cern for health needs and com­fort for those sor­row­ing.  Home Again was expe­ri­enced in the Sat­ur­day night ban­quet with deli­cious food, refresh­ing con­ver­sa­tion and relax­ing atmos­phere in the ban­quet set up in the well-appoint­ed lob­by of the Hol­i­day Inn.

Read More→

Artistry in Wood 2016 — Show Report


By Don Mertz

Pho­tos by Marc Featherly

Since the first event in 1981, Artistry in Wood has been com­mit­ted to pro­vid­ing the best wood­carv­ing and wood­work­ing show for the ben­e­fit of exhibitors, ven­dors and vis­i­tors who come to see some of the best expres­sion of wood­en art as well as being able to pur­chase works of art from the wood­carv­ing and wood­work­ing crafts­man and artist.

Every year the Artistry in Wood stays true to this orig­i­nal com­mit­ment by sharp­en­ing and fine tun­ing the show so that it con­tin­ues to be THE show exhibitors and vis­i­tors will want to attend time after time.  Each year the qual­i­ty of com­pe­ti­tion entries improve as does the growth of ven­dors and eclec­tic mix of artis­tic expres­sions relat­ed to wood along with a steady growth in the size of the show.

The orga­niz­ers of the event were placed between a rock and hard place when the show loca­tion for the pri­or four­teen years was sud­den­ly closed, and had find a com­pa­ra­ble sized show venue in a dif­fer­ent loca­tion and show date (due to sched­ul­ing lim­its at the new loca­tion).  Despite that, Artistry in Wood dou­bled its efforts to stay true to its orig­i­nal commitment.

So com­mit­ted are the event orga­niz­ers to pro­vid­ing the BEST Show pos­si­ble for all con­cerned that ihe adver­tis­ing bud­get was increased from $19,427.00 for 2015 to $30,225 for 2016 to assure all con­cerned that “The Show Goes On.”  The show goes on to main­tain the high qual­i­ty of exhibitors, com­peti­tors, judges, demon­stra­tions, children’s activ­i­ties and vis­i­tors’ inter­ests for the show­ing and sell­ing of cher­ished works of art in the medi­um of wood.  And just as impor­tant, the show goes on so that Artistry in Wood can con­tin­ue the long tra­di­tion and com­mit­ment of giv­ing at least $5,000 to Unit­ed Reha­bil­i­ta­tion Ser­vices of Day­ton and $500 to Part­ners Against Crime charities.

The only venue that was large enough to accom­mo­date a show the size that Artistry in Wood has grown to be with a con­ve­nient loca­tion with­in the radius of Day­ton, Cincin­nati and Colum­bus, Ohio was the Roberts Cen­tre near Wilm­ing­ton, OH.  The only date avail­able for 2016 was for Labor Day week­end.  The Artistry in Wood com­mit­tee real­ized that a change of loca­tion as well as date change from tra­di­tion­al date of pre­vi­ous shows and espe­cial­ly com­pet­ing with major hol­i­day activ­i­ties, a Renais­sance Fes­ti­val and coun­ty fair would have an impact on reg­u­lar exhibitors’ par­tic­i­pa­tion as well as vis­i­tors to the show.  But “The Show Goes On” in order to make the tran­si­tion to a new site and a new date for the 2017 and fol­low­ing years’ show dates.  In 2017 the Artistry in Wood show will be Octo­ber 14 and 15 and the sec­ond week­end in Octo­ber in sub­se­quent years in order to get back to a reg­u­lar sched­ule for loca­tion and date for the show.

Even though there was the expect­ed decrease in atten­dance and exhibitors, yet in the final analy­sis the eval­u­a­tion by vis­i­tors, exhibitors, com­peti­tors and ven­dors was very pos­i­tive. The Roberts Cen­tre show room is beau­ti­ful­ly appoint­ed with superb light­ing with more than ade­quate and con­ve­nient free park­ing and with easy access right off Inter­state 71 at Exit 50.  Roberts Cen­tre is locat­ed with­in a fifty-mile radius from Colum­bus, Cincin­nati and Day­ton. Vis­i­tors were very com­pli­men­ta­ry of the venue, qual­i­ty of wood­carv­ing and wood­work­ing art on dis­play and the added fea­tures of demon­stra­tions, orna­ment carv­ing con­test, raf­fle of qual­i­ty prizes, silent auc­tion of donat­ed wood­en art.  Although some­what small­er than usu­al, the qual­i­ty of the show lived up to its rep­u­ta­tion.  Many first time vis­i­tors joined their voic­es of appre­ci­a­tion with the long time attenders. 

The 2016 show was a bridge from what the show has become to what it will con­tin­ue to become in 2017 and beyond at Roberts Cen­tre the sec­ond week­end of October.

High­lights of the show begin with the com­pe­ti­tion. 278 wood­carv­ing entries were judged by Janet Cordell, Wayne Bar­ton and Al Ful­ford judged 278 wood­carv­ing entries.  Wood­carv­ing Best of Show hon­ors were award­ed as follows:

  • Steve Bak­er — Best of Show
  • Ter­ry Brash­er — Sec­ond Best
  • Har­ry Lim­ings — Third Best

Six­ty wood work­ing entries were judged by Roger Hor­nung, Jim McCann and Lar­ry Sanders who award­ed Wood Work­ing Best of Show to:

  • Bar­ry Todd — Best of Show
  • Scott Hamil­ton — Sec­ond Best 
  • Richard Avram — Third Best. 

Read More→

Artistry in Wood 2015 — Show Report

AN ORIGINAL ~ Dayton Artistry in Wood

By Don Mertz

Artistry In Wood is the orig­i­nal show by that name, first used in 1981 with its found­ing show. Day­ton Carvers Guild estab­lished a com­mit­tee to plan their first wood­carv­ing show.  Car­ol Kunz sug­gest­ed the name Artistry in Wood for the show’s name as an over­all descrip­tion of the kind of show the com­mit­tee would devel­op.  The pur­pose of Artistry in Wood is to plan and pro­vide the “best” carv­ing show expe­ri­ence for exhibitors, ven­dors and vis­i­tors alike by main­tain­ing the high qual­i­ties reflect­ing an “art show” ded­i­cat­ed to wood. From the begin­ning the “plan” also includ­ed that a char­i­ty should also ben­e­fit from the pro­ceeds of the show.

Artistry in Wood is very unique in the world of carv­ing shows in that its pro­ceeds pri­mar­i­ly ben­e­fit Unit­ed Reha­bil­i­ta­tion Ser­vices, which is a local char­i­ty in the Day­ton area, along with Part­ners Against Crime.  Since that first show, Artistry in Wood has con­tributed over $145,000.00 to charities.

Oth­er shows may use this catchy title for their carv­ing show but there is none that equals the ORIGINAL Artistry in Wood.  The 2015 show dis­play area was expand­ed to accom­mo­date 18 addi­tion­al exhibitors who would have oth­er­wise remained on a wait­ing list.  Always plan­ning and work­ing to con­tin­ue this show of excel­lence, the AIW com­mit­tee is open to mak­ing inno­v­a­tive improve­ments for the ben­e­fit of exhibitors as well as vis­i­tors to the show.  We want to make each show a “once in a life time expe­ri­ence” that can be repeat­ed each year with an ongo­ing parade of mem­o­ries. Over 5,000 vis­i­tors expe­ri­enced the once in a life time expe­ri­ence of the 2015 show.

New Loca­tion and Date For 2016

As “An Orig­i­nal” Artistry in Wood con­tin­ues its tra­di­tion of excel­lence as it moves to a new loca­tion for the 2016 show.  The new loca­tion is the Roberts Cen­tre at exit 50 off Inter­state 71, half way between Colum­bus and Cincin­nati and approx­i­mat­ed 45 miles south east of the pre­vi­ous show loca­tion.  The rea­son for the move is because the Day­ton Inter­na­tion­al Air­port decid­ed to use the Expo Cen­ter for only air­port pur­pos­es.  The Roberts Cen­tre is large enough to accom­mo­date the size in which Artistry in Wood has grown to accom­mo­date the num­ber of par­tic­i­pants and visitors.

The Roberts Cen­tre includes a Hol­i­day Inn with 115 rooms, a Max and Erma restau­rant, con­ces­sion ser­vices and ade­quate onsite park­ing. The con­ve­nience of loca­tion in an attrac­tive and spa­cious Roberts Grand Ball­room will be an invit­ing new loca­tion for the Day­ton Artistry in Wood Show.

The date for the 2016 show is Sep­tem­ber 3 and 4 (Labor Day week­end), the only avail­able open­ing for the com­ing year. The change of date and loca­tion may present some incon­ve­nience for par­tic­i­pants and vis­i­tors dur­ing this tran­si­tion time, but be assured that Artistry in Wood is still ded­i­cat­ed to main­tain­ing its orig­i­nal pur­pose of plan­ning and pro­vid­ing for the best and orig­i­nal wood­carv­ing and wood­work­ing show of its kind and ben­e­fit­ing its char­i­ty of choice.

Vic Hood was the Guest Artist of the 2015 show Spe­cial Exhib­it.  You’ll find a pho­to gallery of Vic and his work else­where in this issue of WOM.

The 2015 edi­tion of AIW had exhibitors from 24 dif­fer­ent states plus Cana­da along with over 5,000 vis­i­tors who came from all over the Unit­ed States as well as Cana­da to view the dis­play tables of 221 exhibitors and 26 ven­dors in 313 spaces.

AIW spon­sors a com­pe­ti­tion in the divi­sions of Wood­work­ing and Wood­carv­ing. There were 377 entries in the Wood­carv­ing divi­sion in 22 cat­e­gories con­tain­ing 65 class­es. The divi­sion of Wood­work­ing had 87 entries in 9 cat­e­gories con­tain­ing 23 classes.

The Best of Show win­ners in Wood­carv­ing were:

  • Ter­ry Brash­er from Peters­burg, TN., first
  • Steve Bureli­son from Brad­ford, OH, second
  • Kathy Mitchell from Wind­sor Ontario, Cana­da, third

Wood­work­ing Best of Show win­ners were:

  • Mark Waninger from Jamestown, IN, first
  • West­on Hirschfeld from New Bre­men, OH, second
  • Mike Allen from Belle­vue, OH, third

Judges of Wood­work­ing divi­sion were: Roger Hor­nung, Jim McCann and Lary Sanders and judges of Wood­carv­ing divi­sion were Al Ful­ford, Janet Cordell and Rick Harney.

Vis­i­tors had the oppor­tu­ni­ty to attend edu­ca­tion­al and infor­ma­tive wood­work­ing and wood­carv­ing Demon­stra­tions on both days with Mark Waninger, Charley Phillips and Deb­bie Ander­son demon­strat­ing on Sat­ur­day and Jim Willis, Don Wor­ley and Scott Phillips demon­strat­ing on Sunday.

Oth­er attrac­tions included:

  • The Wood­carv­ing Illus­trat­ed host­ed series of mini Spit and Whit­tle Seminars
  • West­ern Ohio Wood­work­ers facil­i­tat­ed a Youth Pro­gram of hands-on wood­work­ing projects
  • A silent auc­tion of a vari­ety of carved and wood worked art pieces
  • An orna­ment carv­ing con­test where vis­i­tors could watch a new piece being created
  • A mag­a­zine recy­cle table of wood relat­ed mag­a­zines avail­able for a donation
  • The main raf­fle of 124 carved orna­ments, 3 donat­ed carv­ings of past win­ners, a Ger­st­ner Tool box and a box of 500 $1.00 gold coins

One of the spe­cial high­lights of Artistry in Wood shows is always the ban­quet for exhibitors at which time the win­ner of the Ron Ryan Award is announced. Mulie Sheets was the 2015 recip­i­ent as one who exem­pli­fies the pas­sion and advance­ment of wood carv­ing in the exam­ple of Ron Ryan.  Also dur­ing the ban­quet a fund rais­ing raf­fle is con­duct­ed for a vari­ety of donat­ed prizes with the pro­ceeds help­ing with the $5000 gift to Unit­ed Reha­bil­i­ta­tion Ser­vices as the show’s des­ig­nat­ed charity.

The Car­i­ca­ture Carvers of Amer­i­ca will hold their annu­al meet­ing in con­junc­tion with the Day­ton Artistry in Wood Show on Sep­tem­ber 3–4, 2016 and carvers and vis­i­tors alike will have the oppor­tu­ni­ty to meet and greet these car­i­ca­ture carvers.

The best of the 2015 show along with the best of pre­vi­ous years will con­tin­ue in a new loca­tion and a new date for 2016 because Artistry in Wood is com­mit­ted to con­tin­ue all that Day­ton Artistry in Wood has come to mean as “An Orig­i­nal.”  

2014 Artistry in Wood Show Report

Artistry In Wood — A Show of Shows

By Don Mertz

Since 1981 the Day­ton, Ohio Artistry in Wood show has gained the acclaim of being “A Show of Shows” in that each year it con­tin­ues to be the show to vis­it and expe­ri­ence for the first time over and over again.  The 2014 edi­tion host­ed approx­i­mate­ly 5,400 vis­i­tors who viewed over 225 exhibitors’ dis­plays and vis­it­ed numer­ous ven­dors of tools, sup­plies, wood and books for all who appre­ci­ate the cre­ative works of art in the medi­um of wood.

First time vis­i­tors were in awe at the size of the expo­si­tion hall, aes­thet­i­cal­ly laid out with car­pet­ed walk­ways and cur­tained aisles that led to rows of exhibitors, with each one offer­ing unique and beau­ti­ful wood­en art that cap­tured the appre­ci­a­tion of admir­ing eyes and hope­ful shop­pers.  Many vis­i­tors dis­cov­ered that one day was not long enough to take in all the won­ders of cre­ative inspi­ra­tion.  Return­ing for the sec­ond day became an adven­ture of dis­cov­ery of a new eye catch­er that was over­looked the first day.

One first time vis­i­tor who rep­re­sents the sen­ti­ments of many first timers com­ment­ed on the show through Face­book say­ing: The wife and I attend­ed the show for the first time. It was Amaz­ing!! The vari­ety of work was over­whelm­ing to a “new­bie” like me. Every­thing from carved Pop­si­cle sticks to a life sized fish­er­man reel­ing in a bass! All the exhibitors we talked to were more than will­ing to share their exper­tise, great bunch of folks, and with all the ven­dors in one spot it was like Christ­mas. (I spent too much!!)

Anoth­er good show, was a com­ment often repeat­ed along with sen­ti­ments that the show gets bet­ter and bet­ter.  So whether it was first time vis­i­tors or long time return vis­i­tors the sen­ti­ments were all complimentary.

Why Artistry in Wood is con­sid­ered the Show of Shows can be answered in a vari­ety of ways. First is the rep­u­ta­tion of pro­vid­ing the best venue for exhibitors to dis­play and sell their art as well as enter­ing wood­carv­ings and wood­work­ing projects in com­pe­ti­tion that has a full range of cat­e­gories and class­es judged by knowl­edge­able and respect­ed judges.

Wood­carv­ing judges included:

  • Josh Guge, Gilberts, IL
  • Rick Har­ney, Nor­mal, IL
  • John Engler, Bat­tle­field, MO.

All togeth­er, they judged 327 carv­ing entries.

The top carv­ing win­ners were:

  • Best of Show — Charley Phillips, Newark, TX
  • 2nd Best of Show, Sandy Cza­j­ka, Troy, OH
  • 3rd Best of Show — Dylan Good­son, AL.

Wood­work­ing judges were:

  • Roger Hor­nung, Ger­man­town, OH,
  • Lary Sanders, Spring­field, OH
  • Jim McCann, Brookville, OH

They judged 86 wood­work­ing entries, and the top wood­work­ing projects were:

  • Best of Show — Jay Kinsinger, Cedarvil­lle, OH
  • 2nd Best, Deb­o­rah Ander­son, Car­bon, IN
  • 3rd Best, Mark Waninger Jamestown, IN.

Read More→

Artistry in Wood 2012

The ART in Artistry in Wood

By Don Mertz

The Artistry in Wood Show in Day­ton, Ohio con­tin­ues to be one of the pre­mier carv­ing and wood­work­ing shows in North Amer­i­ca.  With over two hun­dred exhibitors from twen­ty eight states and Cana­da par­tic­i­pat­ing, and 4,645 vis­i­tors attend­ing the two day show, yet it is not size alone that makes this event so dis­tinc­tive. All wood­carv­ing shows seek to pro­vide a set­ting for wood­carvers to show cre­ative work, par­tic­i­pate in com­pe­ti­tion and expe­ri­ence the com­radery of carv­ing enthu­si­asts.  But beyond that noble pur­pose, the greater inter­est is to pro­vide a for­mat for the encour­age­ment and advance­ment of wood­carv­ing and wood­work­ing as an art form and to grow that art in oth­er wood artists in what­ev­er lev­el of abil­i­ty each pos­sess­es.   All wood­carv­ing shows have their place and pur­pose.  All wood artists owe it to them­selves and to the pub­lic to sup­port, par­tic­i­pate and do any­thing pos­si­ble to con­tin­ue hav­ing wood­carv­ing shows.

What makes Artistry in Wood so unique is the many forms of art present in the expe­ri­ence of the show itself.  The art in the medi­um of wood is evi­dent in each and every carv­ing and wood­work­ing project.  That is obvi­ous­ly what any­one expects in a show that presents cre­ative works of art for show, for com­pe­ti­tion and for sale to col­lec­tors and gift givers.  But what makes Day­ton a pre­mier show is the less obvi­ous ART in the Artistry in Wood.

First is the Art of Gen­eros­i­ty.  Wood­carvers and wood­work­ers by the atti­tude that com­pels them to cre­ate beau­ty in the medi­um of wood are also very help­ful and giv­ing of encour­age­ment, how-to tips, wood, tools, pat­terns and projects to oth­ers who show any inter­est in the craft and art of shap­ing wood.  That is one of the guid­ing pur­pos­es of spon­sor­ing and work­ing so hard to orga­nize and put on shows and com­pe­ti­tion.  Lots of “labors of love” through the work before, dur­ing and after a show by an army of vol­un­teers is gen­er­ous­ly giv­en.  But more than that form of labor­ing in love is the greater Art of Gen­eros­i­ty engrained in Dayton’s Artistry in Wood.  In 1993 the AIW com­mit­tee was in search of a char­i­ty to enhance and expand the impact of why such a show exist­ed. They vis­it­ed a local Unit­ed Cere­bral Pal­sy agency (now Unit­ed Reha­bil­i­ta­tion Ser­vices) and were very impressed with the impact of their labors of love in help­ing so many chil­dren and adults with spe­cial needs.  The AIW com­mit­tee decid­ed to make Artistry in Wood the best woodcarving/woodworking show in Amer­i­ca and to have the biggest impact on the orga­ni­za­tion by donat­ing $5,000 each year to URSURS now serves four hun­dred chil­dren and adults with spe­cial needs each day. For twen­ty-five years AIW has giv­en $5,000 to char­i­ty each year and will con­tin­ue to so do for years to come.  This Art of Gen­eros­i­ty has enabled AIW to grow each year into one of the best shows of its type.  The more one gives, the more one receives in order to con­tin­ue to give. Thus the rea­son for the Silent Auc­tion, Show Raf­fle, Ban­quet Raf­fle and after expens­es rev­enue is to extend the spir­it of the show into year-round ser­vice through Unit­ed Reha­bil­i­ta­tion Ser­vices. That puts ART into Artistry in Wood.

Still with the spir­it of gen­eros­i­ty the Art of Cre­at­ing a Mem­o­ry is the next ART in Artistry in Wood.  The West­ern Ohio Wood­work­ers hosts a children’s hands-on work­shop with wood­work­ing projects they can build with the help of WOW mem­bers.   180 chil­dren cre­at­ed a mem­o­ry by putting togeth­er 280 wood­work­ing project kits.  Their mem­o­ries were as large as the smile on their face as they car­ried home their own “hand­made” project.  WOW also assem­bled 750 toys for local hos­pi­tal­ized chil­dren to go with pre­vi­ous­ly assem­bled toys in the Smile-A-Minute program.

Mem­o­ries were also cre­at­ed through the demon­stra­tors’ pre­sen­ta­tions on sub­jects of inter­est to show vis­i­tors.  The pre­sen­ters includ­ed Dave Stet­son, Wayne Bar­ton, Diane Sop­er, Jim Dupler, Tom Drum­mer, and Scott Phillips.  Wood Carv­ing Illus­trat­ed host­ed at their booth one hour demon­stra­tion work­shops on var­i­ous wood­carv­ing sub­jects with expert wood­carvers shar­ing their talent.

The ART of Com­pe­ti­tion is enhanced because AIW draws togeth­er carvers and wood­work­ers from across the nation who enters some of the best qual­i­ty carv­ings and wood­work­ing projects to be eval­u­at­ed by respect­ed and knowl­edge­able judges.  Each year there is a sense of awe and amaze­ment with the qual­i­ty, vari­ety and excel­lence of these cre­ative works of art in the medi­um of wood.  This year was no excep­tion as can be seen in the pho­tographs pre­sent­ed with this arti­cle.  Wood­carv­ing Com­pe­ti­tion con­sid­ered 331 entries while in Wood­work­ing there were 53 entries.  Besides rib­bons, 70 cash prizes totaled $5,125 were award­ed.   Judges in wood­carv­ing were Stu Mar­tin, Gary Den­zler and Wayne Bar­ton and wood­work­ing judges were Roger Horung, Jim McCann and Lar­ry Sanders.  Best of Show in Wood­carv­ing was Josh Guge, Sec­ond Best of Show, Josh Guge and Third Best of Show, Susan Dorsch.  Best of Show in Wood­work­ing was Bruce Burk­hold­er, Sec­ond Best of Show, Jay Kinsinger and Third Best of Show, Mark Waninger.

The ART of Serendip­i­ty becomes evi­dent in the unex­pect­ed dis­cov­er­ies of the AIW expe­ri­ence.  First time vis­i­tors and first time exhibitors are like chil­dren in a can­dy store, hav­ing any expec­ta­tions sur­passed by all the won­der­ful things dis­cov­ered down each row and at each table.  The vari­ety and qual­i­ty of carv­ings and wood­work­ing cre­ations are awe inspir­ing while at the same time spark­ing imag­i­na­tion and dreams of being able to cre­ate sim­i­lar cre­ations by one’s own adven­ture into the art.  Col­lec­tors and gift givers have plen­ty from which to choose as well as per­son­al­ly get­ting to know the artists. Exhibitors and vis­i­tors alike enjoy the impromp­tu con­ver­sa­tions that devel­op as well as the mutu­al help with ques­tions like “How did it you do this?”  or “How can I get start­ed in doing what your do?” There are thir­ty ven­dors offer­ing knives, tools, books, wood, rough outs and sup­plies for the art and craft of work­ing in wood.  Ven­dors not only have well stocked items but are eager to offer help­ful answers and sug­ges­tions to each patron’s needs.

The ART in Unex­pect­ed Places is many and var­ied.   Almost every hour of the show a free door prize of donat­ed carv­ings is offered to vis­i­tors.   The Silent Auc­tion of carv­ing and wood­worked projects on any sub­ject depict­ing a Win­ter Hol­i­day between Novem­ber and March was a bonus of sur­pris­es.   Two Raf­fles offered donat­ed items by sev­er­al artists in wood which also includ­ed a tree loaded down with carv­ing orna­ments.  Then there was the Orna­ment Carv­ing Con­test on Sat­ur­day after­noon in which the par­tic­i­pants were observed putting the fin­ish­es touch­es on each orna­ment. Judg­ing of the orna­ments result­ed with top three win­ners of rib­bons being Vic Hood, Wayne Shin­lever and Tim Jack­son.  All par­tic­i­pants were eli­gi­ble for the draw­ing of $35 cash prize, which went to Steve Fowler, Tim Jack­son and Bob Minton.  The Show’s Spe­cial Dis­play of Decoys showed exam­ples of the his­to­ry and devel­op­ment of Duck Decoys.  The Ban­quet Cel­e­bra­tion for par­tic­i­pat­ing exhibitors was a relax­ing respite from a busy first day. Fol­low­ing a deli­cious catered meal and delight­ful table con­ver­sa­tions the fun part began with pur­chas­ing “stretch of the arms” strips of raf­fle tick­ets as the main fund rais­er to bal­last the URS dona­tion.  High-end prizes were offered to sweet­en the pot of pos­si­bil­i­ty for each win­ner while each los­er still was a win­ner in hav­ing giv­en to a good cause.  The high­light of the ban­quet always comes with the sur­prise announce­ment of the annu­al Ron Ryan Award to the per­son who most exem­pli­fies the encour­age­ment and advance­ment of wood­carv­ing.  2012 recip­i­ent is Stu Mar­tin who has instruct­ed thou­sands in his sem­i­nars over the years as well as cre­at­ing a spe­cial style of art in his rough out blanks.  All ban­quet par­tic­i­pants received a donat­ed door prize at the con­clu­sion of the evening.

It has often been said, “Beau­ty is in the eye of the behold­er,” and it can also be said that “art is in the eye of the behold­er” of all kinds of art, the seen, the expect­ed, the unex­pect­ed and the serendip­i­tous.  Artistry in Wood is promis­es to be rich in all kinds of Art for vis­i­tors and exhibitors on Novem­ber 9 and 10, 2013.  Vis­it to refresh the mem­o­ry of the last show or to be intro­duced to what to expect for the next show.