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Woodcraft of Parkersburg Set for Carving Extravaganza


“The Full Moon Saloon” was carved by a collaboration of 21 members of the Caricature Carvers of America who designed the western saloon and the caricatures that represent customers and visitors. It was assembled in 1994.


Woodcarving will take center stage at Woodcraft of Parkersburg on Saturday, July 13, from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. as carvers demonstrate their craft, a carved saloon and its caricature “customers” greet visitors, a miniature carved circus parade is on display and free hot dogs, popcorn and peanuts are served.

“I just want this to be a huge carving event with lots of fun,” Betty Secrist, manager of the Parkersburg Woodcraft store, said.  “We have a big carving community, and I want people to know that Woodcraft has everything they need for carving.”

The “Carvers on the Porch Event” will feature members of the local Geppetto Woodcarvers Club who will demonstrate their craft outdoors on the porch, offer tips and advice, and show their work.

Inside the store, visitors will find the “Full Moon Saloon” – a 4′ wide x 2′ deep x 2′ tall scene that features caricatures of likely patrons at a western saloon.  Twenty-one members of the Caricature Carvers of America created the more than 40 original carvings that include drinking cowboys, bartenders, dancing couples, a lady card shark and her pals, a piano player, a sleazy lady singer, and a host of similar saloon characters, plus the local undertaker pitching a tombstone sale and a temperance movement leader armed with a Bible and a hatchet.

The stories behind the creation of the caricatures are recorded in a book, Carving the Full Moon Saloon – The Art of Caricature in Wood, published by Fox Chapel. The fanciful saloon scene owned by Woodcraft will also be on display Sunday.

Other displays feature circus and Native American themes.

carved circusOLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAColorful units in the 40′-long miniature circus parade that might have been seen across America from the late 1880s to the early 1990s are the centerpiece of the Patrick and Brenda Wentzel Miniature Circus Collection.  Circus pieces are built to an exact scale of 1″ = 1′ or 1/12 the actual size. Patrick Wentzel, a Parkersburg resident and member of the Geppetto Woodcarvers, has collected the hand-carved and hand built circus pieces over the past 30 years and will be on hand to tell visitors about his collection.  The circus parade will also be on display Sunday, and Patrick will be available from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m.  Visit www.patrickwentzel.com to learn more about him.

Jalen Waggoner - Copy


“The First American Woodworker,” (shown right with woodworker, Jalen Waggoner) is 5′ sculpture of an Indian on a stump carving a wood pole into a spear – the Woodcraft trademark symbol.  Well-known American sculptor Armand LaMontagne of Rhode Island carved the Indian from a single block of pine to commemorate Woodcraft’s 50th anniversary in 1978.  LaMontagne has crafted sculptures of presidents and sports celebrities, including a carving of Babe Ruth for the Baseball Hall of Fame.  The Indian sculpture may also be viewed on Sunday.

For more information about Woodcraft, celebrating its 85th anniversary this year, please contact the store nearest you, visit www.woodcraft.com or call (800) 535-4482.  To learn about Woodcraft franchise opportunities, visit www.woodcraftfranchise.com or email woodcraftfranchise@woodcraft.com.

Come one, come all and enjoy this weekend at Woodcraft of Parkersburg!
auf Wiedersehen!…Frank


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  1. avatar
    Lee Reger, July 13, 2013
    It was a great Saturday with so many carvers. And, better yet, so many future carvers! The interest of the visitors was really strong I think that we have introduced several folks (women included) to our enjoyable past time . Reply

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