Here is the official announcement.
Soft Glass Invitational
What ----Soft Glass Invitational is a three day soft glass retreat that will offer up to 30 hours of torch time . We plan on having between 50 and 80 artists and enthusiasts attend. We will have the use of all five of the existing building at the Glass Blowing Center. This is the facility where Art Glass Invitational has been held for the past ten years. An “A” ticket will cost $250 and that will give that participant a dedicated work station that they may use by themselves, or share with others. A “B” ticket will cost $200 and that will give that participant access to all buildings and demos, and they may share with any friends that have a torch station .
We plan on having at least eight live (not taped) demos by very well know lampworkers over the three days. There will be an eight foot high video screen monitor. Most demos will be an hour long. A couple may be longer. After doing a demo, the teacher will return to their own torch station and work just like all the others working in the building. Participants are encouraged to work, wander, ask questions, share information, and have fun. If some one wants to sit and work for the full thirty hours, then they can.
This will be an annual event , always in mid-May.
The main purpose of this retreat is to share the glass experience and teach and learn. We will adopt the motto that AGI has used for the past ten years.” Every teacher is a student, and every student is a teacher”. These are words from Tom and Elaine Doner, the owners of the Glass Blowing Center.
The true reason for this event is to make use of this great facility by having this retreat. This facility can be rented by groups of students, or teachers , so that they may plan something on their own. Single building can be rented or the entire facility.
We are also looking into having a short , simple class on fusing. This could be an extra small cost for those involved.
Where----Soft Glass Invitational will be held in Hilliards, Pa. This is located roughly sixty miles North of Pittsburg, Pa. This site is pretty rural, surrounded by streams and heavily wooded. No hotel right close. So, we are looking to secure a block of rooms in Butler, Pa . About twenty miles away.We are in talks with the tourism board , having them recommend a hotel that might have rooms in the $60 or less a night. We are looking at getting a bus to drive everyone in to start at 9 AM each day. Returning at 9PM the first two days(Thursday, May17 and Friday, May18). Saturday, May 19, will start at 9AM. There will be a BBQ/party starting at 7 PM. Returning bus will be between 9PM and 10 PM.
Lunches will be provided.
This area has VERY POOR cell phone coverage, and most that have been here, love that fact. There should be an area for WI FI at the facility, so that e-mails and posting pics can be done.
We will have information on rooms on our web site.
When----May 17-18-19 , 2012. To become an annual event in mid-May .
Who----The participants will be soft glass workers from beginners to advanced, to very advanced. All levels of talent will be there. It will also be open to people that have never worked in soft glass, or even people that have never worked with any glass. A person wanting to get into glass beadmaking could sign up with a “B” ticket and hang out the three days . Someone will have that person make a bead.
Saturday Bead Bazaar-on Saturday from noon till 5PM we will be having a bead bazaar. If you wish to participate , just sign up. We should have three to four feet of table space for each person wanting to sell. This will be offered for free. As in, it comes with your “A” or “B” ticket. This will be very simple and easy.
Free Trade Zone- In the middle of the Lewis building there will be a “Free Trade Zone’ on Thursday and Friday. This area will have tables when you can put out extra, old, or used equipment , torches, kilns, glass, hand tools, DVDs or loose beads, jewelry, or what have you. Buy, sell, or trade. No commission . Just be sure and collect sales tax.
On Site help—Barry Laffler will be the onsite technical person.He has been the tech guy for many well attended events similar to this. He is a scientific glass blower and he will be doing some fun demos like beer bottle ducks and penny bottles.
Town of Butler--- Tom and Elaine have had a very good relationship with the town. They have provided a BBQ pig roast for AGI in the past. We will be working with the entire town. Teaching mayor(a woman) and a person from the arts council how to make beads. Get a live interview of this as it happens the first day of the retreat. Then run a newspaper story on Friday and invite the town to come by on Saturday for the bead bazaar.
Corporate sponsors—There will be many corporate sponsors helping out to get this event started. There will be donations of torches and kilns and glass directly to the facility so that some one wanting to rent it in the future will have torches and kilns and many hand tools already there.
Lewis and Barb will not keep any donations. There will become the property of the Glass Blowing Center.
This is not a Crystal Myths production. It will be a Barbaloo Production. Thank you Sara Sally LaGrande for the cute name you gave to me and Barb.
Lewis C Wilson and Barbara Svetlick