On Monday July 14, the League of NH Craftsman moved its office staff to Sunapee. The 81st Craftsman’s Fair begins Friday August 2 and runs until Sunday August 10. We are also preparing. The schedule of raffle ticket sellers and demonstrators is near completion. Friday the 1st will see us setting up tables and covering them with raffle items, sub-group displays and a special tribute to Fred Chellis who left us much too soon.

The Fair is annually the Guild’s second biggest fund raiser. But it is so much more. As I’ve said in years past, Mount Sunapee Resort is a great place to be in early August. Added to the beautiful setting, are tents and rooms filled with the work of some of the finest craftspeople in America. Several are Guild members. Along with working in our tent there is ample time to go to the fair.

Volunteering at Sunapee allows new members to get a sense of what a special organization they have joined. The rest of us get to spend extended time with friends. All of us get a chance to see fellow members demonstrate exceptional woodworking skills. Some were beginners a short time ago. There is time to look at what our generous members have donated for the raffle.

And what a joy to see the fairgoers walking by, giving a look to our tent. Wood flying off the lathes draws them in. Then they see the items we are raffling. Told what is happening here, they linger. I, like veteran Guild ticket sellers, have developed a type of vision that is instantly attracted to a hand reaching for a wallet, or the shifting of a shoulder strap followed by an opening purse. Selling here is easy. It’s easy to brag about and show our pride at what members have made. It’s easy to tell ticket buyers that their donation will go to teach young people about the joy of woodworking—the satisfaction of making something with one’s hands. That the money goes to equip school shops, to bus children to our Woodturning Symposium.

We could still use help selling tickets. We especially need help Sunday the 10th when we break down the tent. With more people there at the end, it is possible that many items won, can be hand delivered. If you are planning to donate a piece of your work please let us know so we can determine how to get it to Sunapee. Join us at a wonderful event. Lots of laughs and learning.

Thanks,  Al Hansen    a_hansen@mcttelecom.com