Newfane Heritage Festival celebrates a delayed 50th anniversary

NEWFANE — Since 1970, volunteers have made the Newfane Heritage Festival a fall season destination in the heart of historic Newfane village.

After canceling due to the pandemic last year, the Festival is back to celebrate its 50th anniversary, belatedly. Once again, people will celebrate community, crafts, and entertainment.

The event will run from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., on Saturday and Sunday, Oct. 9 and 10, rain or shine.

More than 60 juried artists and craftspeople will display and sell their work in the tents set up in front of the Windham County Courthouse and the Union Hall.

This year, vendors range from original prints and paintings to stained and blown glass to specialty foods to pottery to jewelry to woodenware to toys to metalwork to cozy knitwear to whimsical ceramics to all-natural soap to handbags.

Samatha Harlow reports that some vendors have been coming for over 40 years. One who has been coming for 48 years plans to offer a commemorative painting of the town green as one of its wares.

A new feature will be a booth sponsored by the church which will sell Newfane Heritage Festival memorabilia, including a commemorative 50th anniversary cookbook coordinated by Cheryl Liston. The booth will also offer festival hats, T-shirts, and mugs.

The Super Raffle, formerly held in the Union Hall, will be replaced by an online auction scheduled for Nov. 1-14. The raffle features donations from vendors; gift certificates; merchandise from local inns, retailers, ski resorts, and service providers; items handcrafted locally; and books written and signed by local authors.

Doris Knechtel, Maude Polo, and Liston say they have been busy gathering items to make an exciting event.

As in past years, a variety of entertainers will provide music and fun for festivalgoers of all ages.

Due to Covid, masks will be required, and church members will not be selling apple crisps, pies, or other food.

Proceeds from the event benefit the wider missions of the First Congregational Church of Newfane, including community support. During Covid, the church became a site for Share the Bounty and Everyone Eats.

For more information, visit the Newfane Heritage Festival page on Facebook, visit newfaneheritagefestival.org, or call the church at 802-365-4079.

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