Many friends of the studio know that I, Susan, as always am looking for new ways to promote artists, artisans and craftspeople in our Washington County area. There are SO many very talented and dedicated people practicing the craft that makes their heart full but not necessarily their pockets.
About a month ago another artist and I began plans to have our studios open at the same time this July to drive more people into the area. That other artist, Kris Gregson Moss, working toward having the Grand Opening for her new gorgeous studio in the hills just a few miles from our studio.
I should have given Kris fair warning that once I start planning something it usually snowballs into some HUGE event. We had discussed seeing what other artist/artisan might like to join us the weekend of July 13-15 of this year. So I got on the ball and that ball has just kept rolling...... To date we have eight artisans (everything from art, forging, and sculptures) two breweries, one glamping venue and the Washington County NY Tourism VERY excited about what we're setting up. Thus, Artisan Trails of Washington County has been born.
Because it's a grass roots effort ,in it's beginning stage and not charging anything for the participants to be involved, there is only a Facebook page set up. Maybe in the future we can find a way to afford a website but that isn't going to happen unless we find that this first year is a success. This is the Facebook page address if anyone is interested in seeing what we've set up so far.
The Facebook page has a Document Group that provides information for artisans interested in joining in and a registration for that can be completed and emailed back to me.
There is also a group for Lodging opportunities which I hope will soon be loaded with venues hoping to attract more people into the area.
It's no surprise that the promotion starved artisan will grab onto any opportunity that comes their way. They are working hard to hone their craft and time to do that i usually precious. So here I am, retired, painting when I feel like it and pouring a lot of effort into this proposed event. I hope for the best and if all that happens is a few new people make their way to ours and Kris's studio for the Artisan Trials in Washington County then that's ok. I do want the other artisans who have become involved to receive their share of walk-ins but hey, it's never guaranteed. No matter how much advertising you pour into an event, you can't kidnap them to force them in
to be there.
I really hope that people will want to come, stay at the Gristmill Camping (Glamping) location where they are hoping to have a caterer and entertainment in the evening after the visitors have seen as many artisans in one day as they can and they go out the next day to discover more artisans. Or, maybe there will be other lodging venues interested in supporting the group. The two breweries will be great places to stop at the end of the day as well for a quick bit and a bit of craft beer.
Well, I'm getting carried away here. I'd better switch back to contacting more artisans and let this ball keep rolling alone.
Robert and Susan Whiting will open their timberframe studio by appointment