The Friends of the Pink Palace, the volunteer organization for the Museum of Science & History (MoSH) is pleased to announce that the 50th Annual Pink Palace Crafts Fair will take place on September 23rd through 25th at Audubon Park in East Memphis.
First held in 1973, the Pink Palace Crafts Fair has been the high point of the fall season in Memphis for 50 years. The first fair featured around 30 craftsmen set up on the lawn in front of the mansion. Over the next two decades, the Pink Palace Crafts Fair grew into a major event with added fine craftsmen, traditional craft demonstrations, music, children’s activities and traditional cooking demonstrations. When the museum grounds couldn’t contain the thousands of fans who came each year, the Friends moved the fair to Audubon Park. It is now the largest juried arts and crafts fair in the Mid-South.
“Our fair has something for everyone – fine crafts artists, historic crafts demonstrations, family-friendly performances on stage, hands-on learning, kids’ activities, and of course, lots of shopping,” says Pam Dickey, chair of the Pink Palace Crafts Fair. “We’re expecting around 150 artists from around the country to join us this year.”
Visitors will find a variety of eclectic pottery, jewelry, 2-D art, glass, wood, leather, sculpture, fiber and so much more. Adding a festival feel are demonstrations by master craftsmen and live music. Food and drink vendors, including craft beer and wine, will be on hand with popular treats and beverages. Kids can visit the petting zoo, ride the popular choo-choo train that circles the park, take a pony ride or try the climbing wall. Some of the craftsmen scheduled for this year’s Pink Palace Crafts Fair include broom maker Jack Martin, printmaker Martha Kelly, sculptor Lester Jones, potter Agnes Stark, woodturner Dennis Paullus, and the Metal Museum.
In celebration of the 50th anniversary of the Pink Palace Crafts Fair, the MoSH exhibits staff has created a special exhibit, which will be on display in late summer at the Museum. The exhibit will feature the history of the crafts fair as well as photos of the fair through the years and examples of crafts fair artist’s work. Documents from the first crafts fair chairman, Laura Powell, will also be displayed in the exhibit.
The Pink Palace Crafts Fair is sponsored by First Horizon, The Powell Family, and the Friends of the Pink Palace. All proceeds benefit the Museum of Science & History, as the Pink Palace is now known.