Free, family friendly activities will take place today at participating businesses in downtown Elkins as ON TRAC continues its series of First Friday events.
Artist and sewing demonstrations, face painting and other activities for guests will be featured from 5 to 7 p.m.
Local textile artist, Emily Ede, will demonstrate traditional rag crochet at Artists at Work.
"Today, most rag crochet is made from new fabrics carefully chosen to create interesting color patterns that are much more whimsical than the original Appalachian pieces," Ede said. "The technique we use now to add a homey touch to a dining room table originated from necessity."
Ede said the technique was practiced widely in the mountains of Appalachia for many years using bits and pieces of worn fabrics that were too precious to waste. Many mountain women crocheted their own type of patchwork with long strips of fabric, cut from garments or household items. The strips were cut fairly wide and had to be crocheted using a large hook.
"Since these were not commercially available until recently, husbands, brothers and sometimes even suitors, carved primitive hooks from the local woods," she said.
Join Ede beginning at 5 p.m. as she demonstrates the skill that was often used to make rugs that kept cabin floors warm during the winter months.
Located at 329 Davis Ave., Artists at Work also will provide guests with an array of refreshments, including scones made by Henry G's Cafe, in the gallery during the demonstration.
"We hope everyone will come downtown and enjoy the unique talents of our local artists," Artist at Work president Cynthia Sandeno said.
Elkins Sewing Center also will participate in this month's event. The center will offer project demonstrations for all ages. Additionally, children ages 8 and older are invited to participate in a free, creative activity. Youngsters must be accompanied by an adult to participate. Guests will be offered refreshments while shopping, store owner Sue Pifer said.
Located in the center of historic downtown Elkins at 300 Davis Ave., Elkins Sewing Center provides quilting and sewing inspiration, information, products and equipment.
Elkins ON TRAC welcomes two new participating businesses to First Fridays for September. This month, Lasting Impressions Tattoo and Art Studio will provide a free activity and special savings for customers who stop in during the First Friday celebrations. This family friendly studio located at 19 Third St. will offer free face painting for kids who visit with their parents. Specials offered during the event include buy one, get one free piercings, 20 percent off tattoos, and buy one, get one free $50 gift certificates.
Gift certificates will be limited to two per customer.
Sewing for the Seasons, located at 11 Seneca Mall, will provide $5 gift cards to the first four customers who visit the store after 5 p.m. The cards may be used on hand-made fall items including window valances, children's and school decor or refashioned wedding gowns, among many other creations made by owner, Dolores Magoc.
Elkins ON TRAC invites residents and visitors to take a stroll downtown and see all that participating merchants have to offer.
"We are working to create a vibrant downtown where the community can mingle with neighbors and friends, and visitors will feel welcome," ON TRAC Project Manager Karen Carper said.
The next First Friday will be Oct. 5.
For more information or to participate in First Friday activities, email email@example.com.