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4 craft lots to feature juried artisans

| Thursday, Oct. 11, 2012, 8:17 a.m.

Thousands will be browsing Ligonier's four craft lots this weekend hoping to find that special hand-crafted gift. Craft lots will open at 9:30 a.m. Friday and Saturday. Crafters will open at 10:30 a.m. on Sunday this year, a change from the usual noon start on Sundays in the past.

Ligonier merchants will conduct sidewalk sales all three days, beginning at 10 a.m. Friday and Saturday and 10:30 p.m. Sunday.

Craft lot chairmen Janet Riordan, Julie Donovan and Christy Markle began selecting this year's juried artisians even before the conclusion of last year's Fort Ligonier Days event.

Riordan has been a chairperson for the last 14 years. She coordinates the 25-spaced Loyalhanna lot and the Fairfield lot added last year on the Commerical Bank parking lot. Formerly, it was the site of the Kids Korner activity center.

“When the Y expressed interest to expand the Kid's Korner and move it to their building last year, we were able to add 19 more vendor spots at the Fairfield lot,” said Riordan.

Some of the items offerd at Fairfield's lot include hand-crafted jewelry, mittens from recycled sweaters, soy candles, handmade soaps, dip mixes and wooden baskets.

The Loyalhanna lot is off South Market Street and closest lot to Fort Ligonier. It is a first stop for many waiting to purchase Kettle Korn from the Popcornman tent operated by Flo and Gleen Herold of Butler. The lot also features wood-crafted items, pottery, leather goods, and other hand-crafted items.

The Municipal lot, located behind the Ligonier Valley Library, features 61 spaces filled with crafters from all across the U.S. and several local artisans.

Roger West of Waterford will display art from his gallery. Joe Costello will offer all-natural farm and bakery products from Friendship Farms in Pleasant Unity. Amy Mead of Ligonier will display kiln-fired fused glass products. Cheryl Robertson of Ligonier's Loft offers PMC and silver wire jewelry. The lot also offers a wide variety of products including hand-hammered aluminum giftware, framed natural butterflies, beehive woodware, pressed flower pictures, pet treats and beach glass jewelry.

Trib Total Media cartoonist Randy Bish will be drawing characatures Saturday at the Trib's booth. Proceeds will go to the Trib's Operation Santa Claus fundraiser.

The Mellon lot, located in Mellon Park along West Main Street, is the largest lot with 79 spaces. From salsa to vintage jewelry, the shaded park setting offers something for everyone. Chocolates, banana pepper mustards, roasted nuts, jerky, maple syrup, gourmet dips and fudges and bagged cookie mixes top the edible products for sale. Hand-crafted items include chainsaw art, Folk art painting, nature photography, gourd birdhouses, potpourri, and even hand-carved Santas.

A craft loop shuttle bus will run 8 a.m. - 6 p.m. Friday and Saturday and 9:30 a.m. - 5 p.m. Sunday.

Deborah A. Brehun is a staff editor for Trib Total Media. She can be reached at 724-238-2111 or