Nearly 100 vendors to converge for 45th Old Deerfield Fall Arts and Craft Festival

  • Jewelry from Beadin’ in Eden on display at the 2019 Old Deerfield Fall Arts and Crafts Festival. After being canceled in 2020 due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the event will return Saturday and Sunday. STAFF FILE PHOTO/DAN LITTLE

  • Brooks McCutchen, left, and Janis Steele, of Berkshire Sweet Gold Maple Farm in Heath, talk with customers about their maple syrup products at the 2019 Old Deerfield Fall Arts and Crafts Festival. After being canceled in 2020 due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the event will return Saturday and Sunday. STAFF FILE PHOTO/DAN LITTLE

Staff Writer
Published: 9/15/2021 4:33:00 PM

DEERFIELD — After a one-year hiatus, artisans from around New England are returning to Old Deerfield for the 45th annual Fall Arts and Craft Festival.

The festival will be held Saturday from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. and Sunday from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. on the Memorial Hall Museum’s grounds at 8 Memorial St.

Tim Neumann, founder of the Old Deerfield Craft Fair and executive director of the Pocumtuck Valley Memorial Association, said he felt there was a “hole” after last year’s fair was canceled, and that organizers are happy to welcome attendees back.

“The fair is one of the busiest times in the village. You see lots of happy people from all walks of life,” Neumann said. “We’re excited to welcome everyone back.”

Attendees will find nearly 100 artisans and museum booths featuring myriad crafts, ranging from apparel to sculptures to furniture. Jewelry of all kinds is one of the main features of the fair this year, Neumann said.

“We are highlighting many specialized jewelers who work in different mediums such as silver, gold, wire, gem and beach stones,” Neumann said. “There’s always room in someone’s jewelry box.”

Visitors can also watch live woodworking demonstrations offered by Western Mass Woodturners. Many hands-on activities are planned for children such as the Jurassic Road Show, which invites kids to learn about dinosaurs through professional paleontologists and geologists, or petting goats from Sage Meadow Farm.

All proceeds from the festival will go toward Memorial Hall Museum. Neumann said he is unsure how many attendees to expect because everything regarding the pandemic remains uncertain.

“Everything that has anything to do with business and tourism is all unpredictable,” Neumann said. “We’ve heard other reports of shows being somewhat down in attendance, but sales for vendors are up.”

Free parking and shuttle bus transportation are available at the Yankee Candle corporate location at 16 Yankee Candle Way. Neumann said shuttle buses are scheduled to run all day during the fair and will operate after the fair ends to ensure people get back to the parking lot. Limited parking is available around the museum grounds and Deerfield Academy is hosting fully accessible parking.

Masks are not required when attendees are outside, but Neumann is asking people to wear a mask when entering buildings or the museum. Festival staff will have 5,000 masks available if someone forgets theirs at home. Neumann said staff members have been working closely with Deerfield’s Board of Health and they have increased space between booths to encourage social distancing.

“Like everything in our lives, we’re adjusting to the COVID situation,” he said.

The festival will be held rain or shine. Tickets are $5 for adults and admission is free for children ages 12 and under. Admission to the Memorial Hall Museum is included with the fair ticket.

Chris Larabee can be reached at clarabee@recorder.com or 413-930-4081.


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