Sunday, August 10, 2008

NH Craftsmen's Fair

After our trip to Saratoga Springs, we headed over to visit with my (other) brother and his family in Newbury, New Hampshire for a couple of days. I was thrilled to hear that the NH Craftsmen’s Fair, held right in town, was on the schedule. I’ve been to so many crap crafts fairs lately. You know the kind: vendors selling things made out of beer cans, or license plates, or clothespins, and every third vendor selling commercial products, like replacement windows or skin care treatments.

The last real craft fair I remember going to was the Sugarloaf Crafts Festival in Maryland about 20 years ago. So when we arrived at the Craftmen’s Fair at the foot of Mt. Sunapee, I nearly wet my pants with glee. A juried exhibition with over 200 true artisans, and not a piece of crap in the bunch: potters, fiber and basket weavers, glassblowers, printmakers, woodworkers, furniture makers, quilters, photographers, silversmiths and jewelry artists. It was so exciting to be in the midst of all of these wonderful artisans that I broke down and did something very uncharacteristic: I bought something. I can usually talk myself out of buying just about anything, but I loved the work of printmaker J. Anne Eldridge so much that, in a bold move, I bought this print:

Here is just a small sampling of some of the pieces I encountered at the fair (wooden bowls, a large wall hanging of ceramic tiles, and handblown glass):

The weather was great, and the setting at the ski resort was picturesque. They had the chair lift running, giving rides to the top of Mt. Sunapee, where the view was amazing. Okay, the thought of riding an open chair lift to the top of a not-insubstantially-high mountain made me way too nervous. Too much like an amusement park ride, and I don’t do amusement park rides. As I’ve said before, the wildest ride I’m interested in is the swan bench on the merry-go-round. But my camera made the trip to the top, and here’s the view:

We had dinner one night at Peter Christian’s Tavern in New London, which has been around for as long as we’ve been visiting (over 30 years). The restaurant was lushly landscaped with flowers:

The soups and sandwiches are commendable, the atmosphere is cozy, and the signature honey mustard is a family favorite (my sister-in-law keeps me well-stocked). The waitresses work their tails off, so if you go, please tip heavily. Here are their award-winning baked wings (baked means healthy, no?):

Here’s the house my brother built. I believe it’s the same house where Heidi nursed Clara back to health, under the watchful eye of Grandfather.

I love visiting northern family members in the summer (which by Virginia standards, only lasts from July to August). I’m way too wimpy for the winters up there. Here’s the type of snow removal equipment a rural NH homeowner keeps stashed in the backyard:


Anonymous said...

I love your photography. It is a plus. I have been to that craft fair and it is wonderful So glad you were able to find some art you loved.Will the eggs hatch?

Merry N said...

Only if you want to come and sit on them.