Best Bets for Dec. 6-8 | The Bainbridge Blab

Out and about is the place to be on Bainbridge this weekend. Because there are at least three artistic tours going on round the Rock, each offering a bursting bounty of works in a myriad of mediums for gift-seekers and art lovers.

First, Bainbridge Working Studios will again host its annual winter tour event at four different artist locations from from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Friday through Sunday.

Bainbridge Working Studios is an independent group of professional artists who live on Bainbridge and make their living through their art whose mission is to educate, inspire and provide the public an opportunity to see art and artists in their element.

Not to be confused with the Bainbridge Island Studio Tour, this event is hosted by full-time working artists with studios on the island, as a way of connecting working artists and their studios with the public. This festive event is where the artists will sell their work as well as educate, inspire and provide the public an opportunity to see art and artists in their element.

The tour is free, self-guided and to be explored at visitor’s own pace.

Eleven artists are set to participate in this year’s winter tour, which will be held at Mesolini Glass Studio (13291 Madison Ave. NE), Davidson Studios (9000 Hidden Cove Road), Terry Siebert Pottery (9766 NE Valley Road), and Erthwerks (13100 Sunrise Drive NE).

For a complete list of participating artists as well as a tour map and additional information, visit www.biworkingstudios.com.

Also, Fifty-six artists are set to show off their stuff at this year’s Bainbridge Island Winter Studio Tour (now in its 36th year), in a variety of mediums across eight venues, each selected through a carefully juried process to ensure their unique “hand and spirit” is reflected in the work.

Known for hand-crafted artwork, the island cultural touchstone event is a free, self-guided art tour celebrating local creatives, set to return again Friday through Sunday.

The event takes place from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. each day, with free refreshments (grab a butter cookie and hot apple cider while you shop for original hand-made gifts made by your favorite regional artists) and a festive atmosphere.

The eight studios in this year’s winter event include: Ferrier Studio (5578 Lynwood Center Road NE), American Legion Hall (7880 NE Bucklin Hill Road), the Filipino-American Hall (7566 NE High School Road), Bethany Lutheran Church (7968 Finch Road NE), the Masonic Lodge (1299 Grow Ave. NE), Sylvia Carlton’s Studio (1245 Grow Ave. NW), Grange Hall (10340 Madison Ave. NE), and Hidden Cove Pottery & Tile (7176 NE Hidden Cove Road).

Each location boasts a variety of art mediums on display, such as jewelry, pottery, paintings, fiber, mixed media, photography, and glass. Some of the more unique artforms include: whimsical fairies and frogs, Nuno felted wearables, Christmas nutcrackers in a variety of characters, Sgraffito etched pottery, colorful fused glass birdhouses, and layered block acrylic paintings.

There are many new artists in the tour this year, along with everyone’s favorite regulars, too. Each artist has a short biography and several photos of their work available for perusing on the tour’s website (www.bistudiotour.com), and officials encourage would-be visitors to check out the detailed background information before they go to the tour (or after) so as to enjoy meeting the artists even more.

A brochure, including a complete listing of artists by studio, a map, and addresses, can be found at several regional stores, the Bainbridge Island Chamber of Commerce, downloaded from the website, or you can request one directly by mail.

For more information, call 206-842-0504.

Finally, Christmas in the Country, a traditional tour offering a bounty of locally made arts, crafts and goodies in homes, farms and studios across Bainbridge, is a grassroots, homespun approach to celebrating the holidays on the island. A chance to gather family and friends to engage in festive fun while shopping for unique handmade gifts.

And it’s back.

This year’s tour — the 26th — will feature seven locations, with about 75 artists and vendors spread between them, open for self-paced browsing from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Friday and Saturday as well as 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Sunday.

There is no charge for admission.

Refreshments will be available, as well as live music to enjoy, a photo opportunity with Santa himself, and free pony rides, too.

Visit www.christmasinthecountry.info for a complete list of locations and participants as well as a map, driving directions and more.

From a comparatively simple start back in 1993, Christmas in the Country has since grown to become a staple wintertime event of the island’s cultural calendar.

According to event officials, “Most all of the venues [in 1993] were historic, some dating back to the 1870s through about the 1930s.

In keeping with the spirit of sublimely simple homestyle feels, this year’s featured artist Chelle “The Gingerbread Lady” Roberts will be serving up the sweets: treats made using a traditional German Christmas cookie recipe, Lebkuchen, passed down in her family for five generations from Vienna pastry makers.

Roberts learned the secret recipe herself when she was just 3, taught by her great-grandmother, and eager sweet-seekers can get their mitts on the fruits of her labor at Hazel Creek Farm (8903 Koura Road), the largest of the tour’s venues.

The 10-acre compound, with charming remodeled 1921 farmhouse, barns, schoolhouses and horse arena, is home to the Hazel Creek Montessori School, named for a small creek that runs through the property. The school director and Ollie Pedersen (landscape architect and native Bainbridge Islander whose family has lived here for something like a century) developed the property that now is “the epitome of country elegance.”

Tour offerings are spread throughout four distinct areas of the property: The schoolhouse, the Hazel House, the Tack Room and the barn, incuding at least two food vendors: Doug Otte (Bavarian bratwurst and homemade soup) and sweet and savory crepes from J’aime les Crepes.

At least three artisans boasting very different wares will be gathered at Sweetlife Farm (9631 Summer Hill Lane NE), including Carol Rolph, Laurie Sharp and Greg Mills.

While the tour’s third location, Alchemy Industrial Arts (9392 NE Wardwell Road) is strictly heavy metal.

The fourth location is Wacky Nut Farm (10821 NE Wacky Nut Way), which boasts a robust roster of 10 artisans and gourmet goodies by Da, Blinchiki! (Russian crepes, soups and Pirozhki).

In downtown Winslow, Meli Melo Island Vintage Boutique (162 Bjune Drive SE) holds a horde of chic vintage stock worth investigating.

Free pony rides are the main attraction at Countryman Stables (5349 McDonald Ave. NE).

Experience the country in pastoral Eagledale, where Kathy Countryman will offer kids 12 and under free pony rides in a covered arena (on Saturday and Sunday only from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m.).

Finally, a baker’s dozen artisans will gather at Lynwood Commons (4779 Lynwood Center Road, Suite G).

The Bainbridge Blab is your one-stop spot to get the 411 on all things 98110. From South Beach to Agate Passage, Battle Point to Rolling Bay, we’ve got the straight skinny on Bainbridge Island: the latest chatter, babble and burble. News, too. Have a tip or a comment for the Blab? Email us at editor@bainbridgereview.com.

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