By Harley Nefe
Avery County’s Fine Art and Master Crafts Festival will return for its 30th year this weekend, from July 16-18, where approximately 60 hand-selected artisans will showcase their unique work for sale.
The free event will be held from 1 p.m. to 5 p.m. on Friday, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Saturday and 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Sunday.
After a successful festival last year, this is the second year that the event will be located at Sugar Mountain Resort. Everything will be set up in the parking lot of the resort lodge.
A spokesperson from the Avery County Chamber of Commerce said the move has been really beneficial to the festival because Sugar Mountain Resort already draws in many people through its summer activities like the scenic lift rides, mountain biking, golfing and dining. In addition to those opportunities, the festival adds another experience for people to explore.
The festival welcomes between 3,000 to 4,000 people each year, and tourists and locals alike can spend the days browsing through a wide selection of goods available for purchase.
The festival features an eclectic gathering of handcrafted items from fine artists and master crafters including photography, paintings, jewelry, sculpture, pottery, weaving, glass art, wood crafts, wood furniture, specialty candles, body care and soaps and much more.
The artists featured at the festival, including new and returning individuals, are invited to participate through a selective juried process that is done to be able to provide a good variety of items that are high quality. This selection of participants includes local crafters as well as artists from across the country.
In case folks cannot make the festival this weekend, the second part of the festival will be held on the weekend of Aug. 13-15. Most of the same vendors will be in attendance, but there are some that will only make appearances during one of the weekends.
The Avery Fine Art and Master Crafts Festival benefits the Avery County Chamber of Commerce. For more information, visit www.averycounty.com or call 828-898-5605.
Sugar Mountain Resort is located at 1009 Sugar Mountain Drive.