Vista Fiber Arts Fiesta and Idaho Trailing of the Sheep Festival
I’ve often read that Americans by and large don’t get enough fiber. I’m not one to argue with doctors, so I’m going to use that as a reason to attend a few more fiber festivals this year. Fortunately for me, and anyone else who needs more fiber in their life, there are festivals large and small in just about every state. Here are a couple fun ones recently covered in the May/June 2018 issue of Handwoven, and for more information on Fiber Festivals around the nation make sure to check out our other articles on the subject.
Vista Fiber Arts Fiesta
Antique Gas & Steam Engine Museum
October 6–7, 2018
At first glance, the Antique Gas & Steam Engine Museum (AGSEM) might not sound like a weaver’s paradise, but the AGSEM is home to a 4,000-square-foot Weavers’ Barn, over 50 looms, and the annual Vista Fiber Arts Fiesta. Organized with the help of the Palomar Handweavers’ Guild at AGSEM, the festival features vendors, demonstrations, and a “spinning corral” where handspinners bring their wheels or spindles to join fellow spinners in making yarn. The museum’s brand-new Spinners Cottage will be open in time for the event. The cottage is the new home of the Susie Henzie Collection, an assortment of over 100 weaving and spinning tools from around the world. Museum admission is free for Fiber Arts Fiesta attendees.
Idaho Trailing of the Sheep Festival
Hailey, Ketchum, and Sun Valley, Idaho
October 10–14, 2018
Spanning three towns, the Idaho Trailing of the Sheep Festival (ITSF) might be geographically the largest fiber festival out there. Along with the usual fiber festival trappings, the ITSF features the Sheepherder’s Ball with live music, cooking classes with local chefs, a farm-to-table dinner, a guided hike, and the Folklife Fair, complete with folk dancers and musicians. The highlight of the festival and the source of its unique name is the annual Sheep Parade: 1,500 sheep and their shepherds parade down Ketchum’s main street accompanied by historic sheep wagons, folk dancers, and musicians.
Featured Image: Sheep Trailing Header: The Sheep Parade is one of the many highlights of the Idaho Trailing of the Sheep Festival.
PHOTO BY CAROL WALLER