October 06, 2022
Editor's Note- This blog was written by Caleb Hodge, a Dollywood Host.
Dollywood is home to several talented craftsmen who share their art through daily demonstrations. Be sure to check them out! But, this blog is about the other artisans who are here for a limited time. Every year during Dollywood's Harvest Festival presented by Humana, more than a dozen visiting crafters descend on Dollywood to demonstrate their art and sell their wares, too. The crafts range from historic necessities to artistic novelties. They come from all over the United States, and each have their own unique story to tell. When visiting the park now through the end of the month, you'll want to stop by and see all of them. They definitely do not mind talking and visiting with Dollywood's guests!
Working at Dollywood, I have the opportunity to get to know these talented folks. I would like to introduce you to each crafter, so you know a little bit about them as you stop by on your next visit.
Teresa Thibault (Concord, North Carolina) At this booth, you'll see Teresa hand-paint Christmas ornaments and personalizes them with beautiful calligraphy. This is her 29th year as a vendor at Dollywood's Harvest Festival. Her shop is located on Showstreet across from The Southern Pantry. Teresa told me her favorite thing about this festival is seeing the same guests return and say hello year after year.
John Bielik (Shelbyville, Missouri) John demonstrates the centuries old art of paper marbling. Another Dollywood veteran, he has been attending Harvest Festival for 24 years now. His shop can be found on Showstreet across from Front Porch Cafe©. John's favorite thing about Harvest Festival at Dollywood is the opportunity to demonstrate his craft for thousands of park guests each day.
Tim Nester (Galax, Virginia) Making our way from Showstreet to Rivertown Junction, you may see Tim's booth next. He hand carves wooden dough bowls and spoons. Tim has been offering demonstrations at our Harvest Festival for nine years. His booth is in Rivertown Junction near Country Cookers- Kettle Korn. His favorite thing about this festival is getting to work with all his fellow craftsmen.
Susan and Jim Acito- Kingsport, Tennessee Susan and Jim specialize in making corn shuck dolls. This is their 6th year at Dollywood's Harvest Festival. Look for them in Rivertown Junction near the Tennessee Mountain Home. Their favorite thing about being here for Harvest Festival is sharing their products with guests who visit from all over the world.
David Fortna, Jonestown Pennsylvania David hand crafts historic games and toys. He has been attending our Harvest Festival as a vendor for 24 years. His booth is next to the duck pond in Rivertown Junction. David's favorite thing about this festival is getting to interact with guests and his fellow crafters.
Lisa Hayward- Centerville, Tennessee Lisa hand paints a variety of glass items. This is her 6th Harvest Festival at Dollywood. Her booth is in Rivertown Junction near Aunt Granny's Restaurant. Lisa's favorite thing about the festival is all the music and Great Pumpkin LumiNights presented by Covenant Health.
Marveta Foutch- Searcy, Arkansas Marveta makes fall and Christmas wreaths and décor. This is her 4th year at Dollywood's Harvest Festival. Her booth is in Rivertown Junction near Dogs N Taters. Marveta says her favorite thing about the festival is getting to interact with so many people.
Laura Rushing- Savannah, Tennessee If you're looking for basket weaving, look for Laura who specializes in this art (as well as chair caning). Laura has been attending our Harvest Festival for 16 years. Her booth is in Rivertown Junction near the Back Porch Theater. Her favorite thing about the festival is getting to catch up with her fellow craftsmen.
Trina Diede- Kodak, Tennessee Trina demonstrates the art of carving sculptures with a chain saw. This is her 15th Harvest Festival. Her demonstration is in The Village in front of the train depot. He favorite thing about visiting Dollywood during this time of year is the connection she makes with fellow artisans.
Mark and Sherry Guenther- Muddy Pond, Tennessee Mark and Shery demonstrate the process of making sorghum syrup. This is their 21st year at Dollywood's Harvest Festival. Find them in The Village in front of the train depot. Their favorite thing about the festival is meeting people and preserving the history of their craft.
Larry Stock- Centralia, Illinois Larry carves wooden spoons by hand. This is his 26th Harvest Festival. He can be found in Rivertown Junction behind the water clock. His favorite thing about the festival is waving at the train.
Dana Stock- Centralia, Illinois Dana demonstrates the art of wool rug hooking. She has been demonstrating at Dollywood's Harvest Festival for seven years now. She can be found in Rivertown Junction behind the water clock. Dana's favorite thing about the festival is making people happy.
Cindie Etienne- Evansville, Indiana If you need a new hat, look for Cindie! She specializes in making felt hats. This is her 24th year at our Harvest Festival. Her booth is in Rivertown Junction next to the train trestle. Her favorite thing about the festival is seeing old friends and making new ones.
Robert Etienne- Evansville, Indiana Robert demonstrates flax breaking which is the beginning process of making linen. He has been demonstrating at the Harvest Festival for 16 years. His booth is in Rivertown Junction next to the train trestle. His favorite thing about the festival is all the people he gets to see.
Sherry Loper- Lucedale, Mississippi Sherry personalizes hand painted wooden signs and monograms various products. This is her 5th Harvest Festival with Dollywood. Her shop is in Craftsman's Valley near Smoky Creek Leather. Her favorite thing about joining us this time of year is enjoying all of Dollywood's flowers and pumpkins.
Arlene and Bob Carey- Pigeon Forge, Tennessee Arlene and Bob make handmade clay jewelry. They have been coming to our Harvest Festival for five years. Their shop is in Craftsman's Valley near Smoky Creek Leather, too. Their favorite thing about being featured in our festival is all the people they get to meet.
Gale and Jimmy Littleton- Fayetteville, Georgia For those in the market for a new painting, I'd like to point you to Gale and Jimmy's booth. They paint landscapes with Jesus incorporated into each piece. This is their 19th year at the Harvest Festival. Their shop is in Craftsman's Valley next to Valley Wood Carvers. They tell me their favorite thing about the festival is Dollywood's Christian values and atmosphere.
Keith Williams- Chuckey, Tennessee Last, but not least, look for Keith. He makes fiddles. He has been attending Dollywood's Harvest Festival as a vendor for 15 years. His booth is in Craftsman's Valley next to Pork Rinds. His favorite thing about the festival is getting to meet thousands of people.
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