Main Event: Art sale brightens nature center's financial picture

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Potter Dave Munz works his craft when not talking with visitors to the Nature Center. Munz said he has been a "permanent fixture" at the art sale coming every year.

Ten local artists exhibited their nature-inspired work at the 11th annual Friends of Quarry Hill Nature Art Show and Sale, Dec. 6 and 7, in the Savanna room of Quarry Hill Nature Center.

A large variety of art for sale included pottery, nature photography, watercolor, stained glass, and jewelry.

A portion of the sales was donated to Quarry Hill for educational programming.

Event organizer Sandy Hokansonsaid more than 300 people attend the two-day event each year.

"The community has supported us well," she said.


"Those looking for gifts appreciate the smaller crowds and the ability to talk face-to-face with the artist who created the work. There are a lot of great artists in our area, and many of them come to Quarry Hill for inspiration," she said.

Hokanson displayed her graphically designed bird prints and greeting cards.

Jacqueand Bob Bonsibrought a selection of their stained glass creations and birdhouse gourds.

Jacque explained that a class the couple took in making stained glass led to 12 years in the business.

"I just fell in love with it," she said. "I design and cut the patterns myself, and purchase glass from vendors in the state."

Maureen Ohlanddrove from the Twin Cities for a girls' weekend that included a stop at the art show. "Friends from Pine Island and La Crosse are joining me today; we like to go to different art events," she said.

Marcia Everingham,enjoying her fifth year at the show and sale, said "It's tradition to come here each year. I love anything to do with nature."

"I like the local artists. We are blessed in Rochester with artists," added her friend Elaine Paulsen.


Watercolorist Cathy Wheelerdisplayed bookmarks, necklaces, greeting cards, and prints, many of wildflowers.

Wheeler said she's been an artist "forever," but she vividly remembered painting her first watercolor in seventh grade. This year was her first time at the art show.

"They only bring in really talented artists to the sale. It's a treat to see what's new and exciting here," said Don Anderson,who is a wildlife photographer.

Brian Wissinksaid he came to the sale looking for wildlife art and photography from Northern Minnesota.

"I like the photos of sunsets or sunrises over Lake Superior," he said.

Woodworker Mel Turcanikdisplayed a variety of items — holiday ornaments, bottle stoppers, and micro-tops — all made from wood collected over the years.

"My newest projects have been the miniatures. It's the most relaxing; it's what I do for fun," Turcanik said. "I like to work with my hands, that's when I most feel like me."

His work includes a box of 50 micro-tops, as small as ¼ inch. He took one out and spun it.


"They're great tension relievers," he said.

Boyoung Woowas browsing the watercolors of Hee-June Shin.

"I will go back to Korea someday soon," she said. "And I would like to take back a photo of the Mayo Building as a remembrance."

Many of the artists featured at the sale also display their work at Semva Art Gallery.

For more information about the programs of Quarry Hill Nature Center, visit .


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On Jan. 13, we'll feature the Cookie Walk for RideAbility.


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