Wednesday's Mountain State Forest Festival events were a mix of old traditions and first-time events.
The Food and Craft Show at the Seneca Mall in Elkins is a brand new Festival event, with vendors offering a variety of homemade items for sale.
Angela's Embellishments includes handcrafted jewelry, each a one-of-a-kind creation. Appalachian Country Creations has many pieces of handcrafted jewelry, including turquoise pieces. Stephanie Bender offers local honey and honey chap sticks.
The Mountain State Forest Festival Board of Directors gather with Maid Silvia LXXVII Ashley Elizabeth Houchin Tuesday at the Maid Silvia Luncheon. From left are, bottom row, Kathy Leombruno, Ray LaMora, Molly Busch, Houchin, Cliff Marstiller, Hugh Hitchcock and Donna Reckart; second row, Scott Goddard, Scott Harris, Richard Talbott, Bill Hartman and Steve Shepler; third row, Cindy Nucilli, Karen Bialek, Bob Wamsley, Frank Santmyer, Mark Tomblyn and Van Broughton. (The Inter-Mountain photo by Beth Christian Broschart)
"Our honey is raw and unfiltered," Bender said. "Today has been a great day. We did well and there was a lot of traffic through the mall today."
The Art of Fudge offers many flavors of fudge. The display is run by Mary Evans and Ryan Keister of Romney.
Nanette Trammell has a variety of handmade jewelry items, and plans to open a permanent home for her creations in the Seneca Mall. Her business, Hodge Podge Station, will be located in a small shop in the mall.
Bears By Mom offers shoppers stuffed animals, West Virginia University crafts, jewelry and sports cards.
Elkins resident Patsy Turner has a large display of quilts, jewelry and fall decorations for sale. She also offers Amish baskets, made by Amish children. On Wednesday, she also offered free kittens.
On Wednesday evening, the Seneca Trail Artist Guild Juried Art Show Reception and Photography Exhibit Contest drew quite a crowd to the Randolph County Arts Center. As a long-standing MSFF tradition, the Seneca Trail Artist Guild Juried Art Show featured more than 50 artists from all over the state, with work from all age groups, including students from elementary, middle and high schools.
The exhibit featured paintings, sculptures and pottery on display, drawing inspiration from everything from nature and Native Americans to zombies. A piece by Ken McCoy entitled "Aspen Gold" was raffled off during the event.
Among the many winners of the evening was Barbara Miller, who won the Best in Show prize for her piece titled Blue Out Buildings.
"It's phenomenal," Deanna Gillum, a Seneca Trail member and former "Best in Show" winner, said about the exhibit. She also won a prize for her piece "On Stoney Run," which depicted a scene she said she drove by everyday.
"It seemed interesting so I decided to use it for a piece," she said. "I didn't expect it to win."
Linda Walker, another Seneca Trail member, said she loves pieces that tell a story. She has been submitting pieces for 30 years. Her submission this year, entitled "Falling Leaves," took 20 hours to complete.
"One of the great things about this exhibit is that there are a lot of different age groups represented," said Shawn Ann Schafler, also a Seneca Trail member. Schafler said she drew much of her inspiration from nature, including her piece "Doe's Eyes," which was done with water color.
"This is something that we (Seneca Trial members) look forward to every year," Schafler said.
Awards for the exhibit included best of show, Barbara Mueller; first place, Louise Braddock; second place, Bill McWhorter; and third place, Laurie Goldstein-Warren. Merit ribbon winners include Chet Lowther, Marcie Cooper, Margo Blevin-Denton and Deanna Gillum.
The James A. Hartman Memorial Award winner was Jeannine Romano; the O. Ralph Michael Memorial Award winner was David Shombert; the Arnold F. Schultz Memorial Award winner was Geoffrey Braunsberg; the Watercolor Society Award winner was Kenneth D. Waddell and the West Virginia Landscape Award winner was Katie Crim.
The Talbott Frame Award winner was Paul Ends; and the QBH Frame Award winner was Karen Ensor Brown. The Davis Trust Purchase Prize Award winner was JoAnn Barlow.
Honorable mentions went to Linda Turner, Akiko Endo, Chet Lowther, Bill Gibbons, Joan Kefover, Laurie Goldstein-Warren, Karen Ensor Brown, Joe McInroy and Martha Reynolds.
The Queen's choice award winner was Barbara Mueller. The Maid of Honor Choice Award winners were Sophia Gillispie and Mariah Dunn.
Student art exhibit award winners included: Kathy Madden Award, Sophia Gillispie; K-2 first place, Anastasia Martin; second place, Sharon Smith; third through fifth grade, first place Liam Duvall; second place, McKenna Johnson; third place, Maggie Kitzmiller; grades six through eight; first place, Taylor McKinnie; second place, Simon Hoffman; third place, Emily Marple. High school winners included first place, Sarah Smith; second place, Alexia Reeler; and third place, Gavin Isner.
Also at the Randolph County Community Arts Center Wednesday, Barbour County native Sarah Ferguson's solo exhibition opened and will continue through Nov. 20.
Ferguson, a Barbour County native, earned a degree in art education from West Liberty State University and has pursued graduate work at West Virginia University. She primarily works in watercolor and pastel, but enjoys all media. She has been a commissioned artist in both landscape and portraiture.
She has taught art in Barbour County schools, the ArtsBank program in Randolph County, the Stifel Fine Arts Center in Wheeling and at the Arts Center. She likes teaching new techniques, and says she is glad to be able to share her experiences with others through teaching and her artwork.
One piece in Fergurson's show is a painting of Harry Yount, the first Park Ranger in the United States.
"I painted this for my father," Ferguson said. "He worked at Yellowstone National Park."
Ferguson said she likes all kinds of art, and mostly enjoys painting eyes.
Also on Wednesday, the MSFF royalty finished up their tour of Randolph County, visiting Huntington Bank, Mountain Valley Bank, McDonalds and Stockman Bank.
Randolph County students from Valley Head, Tygarts Valley, George Ward, Homestead, Beverly and Harman Schools welcomed the group with songs, hugs and gifts for Maid Silvia LXXVII Ashley Elizabeth Houchin and her maids of honor, Amber Marie Karlen and Kara LeeAnne Parrack. The entourage shared lunch with students at Beverly Elementary School.