Pottery Tours and the Effect on the Local Economy

Thinking about how our pottery trail has been a great asset for our local economy, and how the many pottery tours around the country do the same.   I just spoke to Mary Barringer who is part of our pottery trail here and has been an invited guest to Bob Briscoe’s studio for many years on the St. Croix Pottery tour. She mentioned how much money that tour brings in on sales each year…way more than ours!  (The St. Croix Pottery Tour is in it’s 18th year.)  Our pottery trail is only in its 6th year and is doing very well.

A few days after our pottery trail I wrote a letter to the editor in our local newspaper.  I just thought I’d share it here.  I think as artist/potters it is important that we let our local officials, and the common citizen know what artists bring to our economy.

When we think of our local economy, we all have our thoughts and ideas about what will sustain and support our lives here. As an artist and firm believer in buying local, I am happy to share one of the ways a group of potters contributes to our local economy.

This weekend of April 24-25 was the 6th annual Asparagus Valley Pottery Trail.  We would like to thank all of the locals who attended our studios.  As the years go by we have also attracted more and more visitors from afar. They come to see the many nationally recognized potters on the tour… and they also come for a weekend getaway to this beautiful valley. This year’s tour was by far the most well attended.  Hundreds of visitors came for the day, or stayed for the weekend. Visitors came from Boston, Worcester, Springfield, and from NY, NJ, CT, VT, NH, ME, PA, spending nearly $40,000 in two days at the 10 studios.

As a group of artists we are proud to bring so many visitors to the Pioneer Valley.  Not only did these visitors spend their dollars supporting local artists, they also supported our local B&B’s, hotels, restaurants and shops.

We look forward to many more years and the ever-growing popularity of this local cultural event, which celebrates the enormous talent of our Valley’s artists.

So, if you missed the tour this year, come for a visit next April and discover one of the areas most precious “local resources”, its artists.

To find out more about our tour, visit our website:  www.asparagusvalleypotterytrail.com

Lucy Fagella- Greenfield, and all the potters on the tour

Tiffany Hilton- Greenfield, Tom White- Northfield, Molly Cantor- Shelburne Falls, Mary Barringer-Shelburne Falls, Steve Earp- Shelburne Falls, Donna McGee- Hadley, Angela Fina- Amherst, Francine Ozereko- Pelham, Michael Cohen- Pelham



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