Reading-Berks Chapter, Pennsylvania Guild of Craftsmen Holding 60th Annual Holiday Craft Show
Reading, PA—The Reading-Berks Chapter of the Pennsylvania Guild of Craftsmen in partnership with Kutztown University and the PA German Heritage Center, will hold its 60th Annual Juried Holiday Craft Show on Sat., Oct. 31 (9 a.m.-5 p.m.) and Sun., Nov. 1 (10 a.m.-4 p.m.) at Kutztown, PA.
One of the region’s most popular seasonal shopping events for authentic local art and crafts—will be held this year in a new location—Keystone Hall on the campus of Kutztown University at South Campus Drive and Baldy Street, just off Route 222.
The show offers museum quality examples of contemporary and traditional Pennsylvania folk artwork produced by more than 150 artisans who are members of the Reading-Berks Chapter—which is the largest chapter in the Pennsylvania Guild—and other juried craftsmen who are members of the Pennsylvania Guild.
Together with the talented Guild artisans, select Kutztown University art students will be displaying and selling their art. Alumni have also been invited to participate, making this a historic gathering of artists said Reading-Berks Guild President Barry Bennecoff.
“Berks County is fortunate to have such a diverse community of artisans. Our holiday show exhibiting Guild members have work that can be seen all over the world and as close as your local galleries, the Reading Public Museum shop and the very popular GoggleWorks, which is a haven for education, mentoring and the artist community.
Bennecoff said visitors to the show may choose from several genres-assorted arts, basketry, clay, fiber, glass, jewelry, metal, paper, photography and wood. Traditional holiday show favorites are stained glass, hooked rugs, pressed and dried flower art, furniture, woodworking, ceramics, wearables, tole and folk art paintings and holiday collectibles, including Santas.
“People looking for great holiday gifts or looking for artworks to add to their own collection, will find an incredible variety in a broad price range,” said Bennecoff. “We also welcome anyone who wants to see the high level of quality crafts being done by our members.
“Many of our Guild craftsmen are nationally and internationally credited artisans and bring their exceptional talents to the show. They have been juried to assure their work is consistent with highest standards of the Reading-Berks Chapter and the Pennsylvania Guild of Craftsmen.”
The Acoustic Roadshow, featuring a variety of talented local musicians, will be performing both popular and original musical entertainment throughout the event. Dori Martin Catering is providing refreshments in a special café seating area.
The show features live holiday music and a “Pick-A-Prize” Raffle of handcrafted items, each worth $50 or more and created by Guild artisans. You can preview the raffle items at the Guild’s website www.rbcrafts.org. Door prizes also are given away every hour on both days.
Visitors are asked to give a donation of $4. Kutztown University students and children under 12 are free. The event is wheelchair-accessible with ample parking and handicapped spaces.
The 60th annual show will be previewed on the Guild’s regular monthly program on Berks Community Television (BCTV) from 6 to 7 p.m. on Sept. 29 hosted by W. Eugene Burkhart Jr. Member work is also part of the “Raw to Refined” exhibit at the Reading Public Museum (www.readingpublicmuseum.org) through Oct. 31.
Founded in 1945, the Reading Chapter has a four-fold mission: To promote and protect the interests of the craftsman; to encourage the study and practice of handcrafts; to uphold the best of traditional and contemporary crafts; and to maintain standards of excellence in design and technique. Membership is open to anyone.
In addition to its two craft shows each year and its show on BCTV, the Guild publishes a newsletter, hosts an annual student awards program with monetary awards for Berks County high school seniors, and disburses annual grants to members for educational use. The Guild also sponsor an annual award for the best in traditional work at an exhibition at Pennsylvania State Shows and donates yearly to BCTV and the Kutztown University Scholarship fund.