Fiber Mania Sweeps Alliance

by Evan Chwalek

Downtown Alliance will again host an event celebrating fiber arts and area businesses on April 23. The 9th Annual Fiber Mania is co-sponsored by the Canton Visitors Bureau, ArtsInStark and two local businesses, Enchanted Threads Fiber Arts Gallery and The Troll Hole Museum.

The event, which is free to the public, will showcase local artistic talent including fiber artists and musicians. Prizes including a Kindle Fire, crocheted throw and upcycled glass lawn ornament are up for grabs.

By following a map through downtown Alliance businesses, attendees can participate in a scavenger hunt and enter to win one of the grand prizes. Additionally, the event serves as a way to acquaint oneself with the galleries, restaurants, and stores of Alliance.

Over a dozen businesses will be involved with the scavenger hunt, with a small troll doll hidden in each location. Only participants earning stamps from twelve of fourteen businesses will have a chance at the grand prizes.

Assistant Organizer of Fiber Mania, Vickey Kugler, hopes the event will help show off the revitalization of Alliance. Kugler said everyone involved hopes to “show how downtown Alliance is becoming an arts area” and that “there’s so much that’s changing down here.”

Attendees can look forward to learn the process of creating various forms of fiber art, including felting, crocheting, knitting and spinning. Everything from raw materials to finished pieces of fiber art will be available for purchase, inspiring fiber artists of all abilities. The craft show will host over a dozen vendors and live music will be entertain the visitors.

“Everyone’s participating in their own way. It’s pretty cool” Kugler said.

Animals whose fur is used for fiber arts will also be present, showing the process from animal to finished product. Classes in fiber arts also add an educational dimension to the event.

The fiber arts festival is only one aspect of the revitalization of downtown Alliance. Farmer’s markets, new businesses and restaurants are a refreshing sight and raise hope for a thriving downtown arts scene.

Fiber Mania will take place in downtown Alliance from 10:00 A.M. to 5:00 P.M. on April 23.