Art in the Park a success | SteamboatToday.com

Art in the Park a success

Christine Metz

Christopher Fry is not sure what prompted him to sit down one day and start carving spoons.

He collected the wood to build a guitar, but instead, he started carving a cooking spoon at his wife’s request. It took two weeks and a pack of Band-Aids to finish, Fry said.

That was 4 1/2 years and thousand spoons ago.

On Sunday, Fry watched from his tent as a constant stream of customers shuffled through hundreds of spoons on display at the 31st annual Art in the Park.

Jen Jones, marketing director for the Steamboat Springs Arts Council, called Fry’s spoons one of the new favorites at this year’s Art in the Park.

The Louisiana artist said his work has become so popular that he quit his job as a construction manager two years ago and has been carving spoons full time since then.

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Seventy percent of his spoons “never see the inside of a pot,” Fry said. But he insists they were built to be used and that each one is intended to fit someone’s grasp.

Some of the wood he uses comes from his 40 acres in Denham Springs, La. Other spoons are made of wood found along the shores of the Mississippi River.

“We live 40 miles from the Mississippi River, and every kind of log in the world washes up in Baton Rouge,” he said.

Fry heard about the Steam–boat show from friends in northern Louisiana who have attended in past years. Fry and his family are making the trip part of their summer vacation, and they intend to tie their stop in Steamboat into a series of art shows ranging from Taos, N.M. to Spearfish, S.D.

By Sunday afternoon, Jones was calling Art in the Park a success, with the weather holding up all weekend and 135 vendors in place. The show had about 20 local vendors, most of whom were new.

With a mixture of jewelry, paintings, photographs, metal yard work and clothing, Jones also said the vendors represented a lot of diversity. The number of visitors also was high.

“It is one of the best shows we have had in years as far as attendance and just the quality of the show,” she said.

— To reach Christine Metz call 871-4229

or e-mail cmetz@steamboatpilot.com

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