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Carving Demos, Miniature Circus Parade, & Much More at Woodcraft of Parkersburg July EventBack to Press Releases
PARKERSBURG, W. VA. (June 2013) — Woodcraft of Parkersburg will host a “Carving on the Porch Event” Saturday, July 13, from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m., complete with carvers at work, tiny carved circus animals, a historic Indian sculpture, saloon caricatures, and free food.

The “carving extravaganza” will feature members of the local Geppetto Woodcarvers Club as they demonstrate their craft outdoors on the porch, offering tips and advice to visitors. Members’ work will also be on display.

Inside the store visitors will see a 40'-long circus parade – a miniature replica of a daily circus parade that might have been seen across America from the late 1880s to the early 1990s. The display is 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 Gepetto Woodcarvers, has collected the hand-carved and hand built circus pieces over the past 30 years. Additional circus items are on permanent display at the Children’s Toy and Doll Museum in Marietta, Ohio.

Wentzel will be on hand to tell visitors about his miniature circus collection. Besides collecting circus pieces, Wentzel is also a noted carousel historian and an avid carousel and circus photographer. He has been a member of the Circus Model Builders and Circus Historical Society for 35 years and is a 30-year member of the National Carousel Association, currently serving as director, carousel census chairman, and Identification Committee chairman. Wentzel also owns Classic Carousel Carvings, which offers a complete line of carving kits for miniature carousel horses and carousel menagerie animals. Visit www.patrickwentzel.com to learn more about him.

“To go along with the circus theme, we will serve free hot dogs, popcorn and peanuts,” Betty Secrist, manager of the Parkersburg Woodcraft store, said. “I just want this to be a huge carving event and lots of fun. We have a big carving community, and I want people to know that Woodcraft has everything they need for carving.”

Attendees will see different types of carving at two other displays.

“The First American Woodworker” 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. It was first displayed on the cover of the Spring-Summer 1978 Woodcraft catalog.

Over the past 35 years, LaMontagne has had to repair his sculpture twice. In the 1970s, blasting near the Woburn, Massachusetts Woodcraft office sent a rock through the ceiling that severed the Indian’s hand and broke a leg, requiring substantial “first aid.” In 1988 the Indian’s knife mysteriously disappeared and had to be restored. LaMontagne has done several sculptures of presidents and sports celebrities, including a carved wood bust for a bronze casting of former president Gerald Ford and a carving of Babe Ruth for the Baseball Hall of Fame.

The “Full Moon Saloon” will also be on display. This 4' wide x 2' deep x 2' tall scene features caricatures of likely patrons at a western saloon, the product of 21 individual woodcarvers. The collaborative effort began in October 1993 and took thousands of hours to complete the more than 40 original carvings that include characters, glasses, signs, bottles and other items. The stories behind the caricatures are recorded in a book, “Carving the Full Moon Saloon – The Art of Caricature in Wood.” The fanciful saloon scene, owned by Woodcraft, has been on tour at Woodcraft stores since its completion.

Woodcraft Supply, LLC, celebrating its 85th anniversary this year, is the industry leader in providing a wide variety of top quality products, educational opportunities and one-on-one guidance to woodworkers of all skill levels. For more information about Woodcraft, 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.