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Extravaganza weekend of arts and crafts

Aggie Zaremba
Bret HartmanApril Nottingham creates jewelry, complimented with handmade beads.
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The events take place in three homes and studios of local artists in Red Cliff (the Red Cliff Holiday Art Market) as well as at the Eagle-Vail Pavilion (Eagle Valley Arts and Crafts Fair). Participating artists’ homes will be open for visitors Saturday from 11 a.m until 9 p.m. The display hours for the arts fair in Eagle-Vail are 5-9 p.m. today and 10 a.m. to 5 p.m Saturday.

Both festivals offer a different experience, yet they both serve a similar purpose.

“Our main goal is to expose local art to the public as well as provide locals with a fine holiday shopping experience,” said April Nottingham, founder and co-organizer of the Eagle Valley Arts and Crafts Fair.

The fair will host 25 artists showcasing their hand-made creations, including oil lamp candles, wreaths, pottery, soap and bath products, jewellery, dolls, and more.

“Vendors were chosen through an application process,” said Nottingham. “We always ask them to send us pictures of their art work. Based on the originality of their creations, we choose future vendors for the fair.”

The festival features both artists who have been participating in the event since its beginning four years ago and first-time craftsmen.

An interesting thing about the fair is that it showcases different kinds of art work.

“Most of the fairs feature only one kind of crafts,” said Kate Tenant, one of the original fair artists. “They try to diversify. That’s why each of the vendors displays a different type of art. Additionally, all items are original, hand-made applications.”

Roxy Buniger of The Flower Cart is a first-time participant. She will be selling wreathes and flower arrangements, as well as taking special orders. Her favorite Christmas flowers to work with are red and white carnations. She began her business a year ago, and is attracted to the creativity of arranging.

Craftsmen participating in the event will donate artwork as well as money to Salvation Army and the charter school in Eagle.

As for the Red Cliff Art Market, it features art in a more intimate environment, which is homes and studios of local artists.

Visitors can meet them in three houses in Red Cliff, at 236 Eagle Street, 159 Monument Street and 524 Water Street.

“We held a similar event two weeks ago,” said Sydney Summers, co-organizer of the tour. “Since we had a good turnout, we decided to repeat it this weekend. We thought it would be a great opportunity for people to get original, handmade Christmas gifts.”

Thus, five local artists – Summers, Lin Janson-Will, Barb Bomier, Jennie Lewis and Pat Erlanger -will showcase their oil paintings, jewellery, wreaths, crystal sun catchers and small gift items in old Victorian houses, which are characteristic of Red Cliff.

“At this time of the year, my watercolors present winter scenes, since that’s what surrounds us right now,” said Summers.

Bomier will present richly textured oil paintings, featuring winter as well as New Mexico’s landscape.

The tour will be complimented with hot cider and cookies made in Bomier’s antique wood-burning stove.

The Red Cliff Art Market kicks off Saturday, from 11 a.m until 9 p.m. The display hours for the Eagle Valley Arts and Crafts Fair are 5-9 p.m today and again 10 a.m until 5 p.m Saturday. Both events are free.


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