Residents living in the coalfields of southeastern Kentucky have few opportunities for employment but Red Bird Mission, a global ministry of The United Methodist Church, does its part to help artisans in the Cumberland Mountains earn a living. In an effort to alleviate a real unemployment rate approaching 50% in the Red Bird Valley, Red Bird Mission Crafts markets a wide selection of high-quality crafts for as many as 100 different crafters living within an 80-mile radius of the mission, which is located in Beverly, Kentucky. Red Bird Mission has enabled local residents to become more self-reliant since its beginning in 1921 as a mission school in the isolated community of Beverly. Today the mission provides a high-quality education to children and youth through its school and assists families through a dental clinic, health education, community outreach, community housing improvement, and a thrift store.
In cooperation with the Red Bird Mission, Belle Meade United Methodist Church will host an Appalachian Craft Fair at 121 Davidson Road in the church Fellowship Hall on September 29, 2018, from 9:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.
Shoppers will find beautiful handmade honeysuckle vine, creek willow, and reed baskets, a family tradition developed in an age when total self-sufficiency was necessary for those living in the isolated mountains. Other handmade items include jewelry, hand-painted gourds, woven placemats, and brooms for use or decoration. Doll collectors will have the opportunity to purchase a variety of handmade dolls. And several varieties of corn shuck flowers will delight flower lovers. Wooden crafts consist of toys, games, kitchen utensils, cooling racks, stools, and benches. Adorable wood and cloth Christmas ornaments, an assortment of nativity sets, and the one-of-a-kind Santa dolls add to the colorful display.
For more information on the craft fair, contact Belle Meade United Methodist Church at 615.352.6210.