April: The Artisans of PA Route 6 - A Blend of Art, Crafts, and History

The PA Route 6 Heritage Corridor is blessed with an abundanceof talented people who are making unique items; some with their own hands, some made with natural products found in the environment and others using traditional skills that tell the story of a certain place and time.

The people, galleries, studios, museums and shoppes that make up the PA Route 6 Artisan Trail are a testimony to the rich heritage of visionaries and entrepreneurs that helped build the northern tier of Pennsylvania. Today, a lively bunch of artists, crafters, performers, and culinary artists are making a mark along one of America’s favorite scenic drives.

Traditional artist, like Connie Sickler at the Settlement House in Sylvania (Mile Marker or "MM" 246-247) and Wendy Neckers at Painted Finch Gallery in Corry (MM 65-66), open their studios and galleries for visitors, sharing their love of art and their area, by helping to expose other local artist to the traveling public.

A mix of history and art can be found at the ArtWorks at the Depot in Kane (MM 124-125) where historical artifacts are displayed alongside original art work and fine crafts from local residents. The Doucette House in Edinboro (MM 20N-21N) features furniture by local craftsmen as well as the artwork of Aime’ Doucette.

In various stops along the Artisan Trail, the works of local photographers interpret their view of the natural landscape. The Potter County Artisan Center in Coudersport (MM 175) displays the scenic images of the PA Wilds by award winning photographer, Curt Weinhold, as well as others. Locally written and illustrated history books are available from the Allegheny National Forest Visitors Bureau in Bradford (MM 132).

Across the Artisan Trail, organizers are using the arts to celebrate the industries that helped build their towns and create a unique cultural theme. The Arts on Fire Festival at the old Scranton Iron Furnace, the first weekend in June, will include live iron pouring demonstrations along with artists, food vendors, live music and other historical display.

Glass is another traditional processed material with a rich art history along Route 6 from century old, delicate glasswork of the Christian Dorflinger on display at the Dorflinger Glass Museum in White Mills (MM 365 ) to the modern day pieces at Stained Glass Reflections in Wellsboro (MM 220-221). This summer, glass will be used in a unique interpretation of history, recreation and art when the architectural glass blocks, manufactured at the Pittsburgh – Corning plant in Port Allegany will be used as a foundation for a Serenity Park in the town center (MM 159  ).

The traditional art of processing and using fibers materials is featured at two different sites in the Endless Mountains. The Home Textile Tool Museum in Rome (near MM 275) displays the methods of making fabric while quilt making is celebrated with the Quilted Corners of Wyalusing, a self-guide driving tour of barn quilts posted on barns and buildings throughout the area (MM 287).

A new breed of craftsmen of fine wines, beers, spirits, cheese, maple products and chocolate are opening shop along the Route 6 corridor. Using what is naturally available to the area and introducing new crops and techniques, these visionaries are expanding the culinary delights found on the Artisan Trail. From renowned wines of the Conneaut Cellars Winery and Distillery (MM 14) to the wonderful Havarti-style cheese of the Leraysville Cheese Factory (near MM 287), there is plenty to sample as you visit the Artisan Trail. Make sure to check out the Route 6 Wine at Flickerwood Wine Cellars in Kane (MM 126) and the Route 6 Red Ale at River Barge Brewing Company in Wyalusing (MM 288 ).

To find out more about the artisans and crafters along the PA Route 6 Artisan Trail, check out the website at http://www.paroute6.com/discover_the_artisan_trail. The PA Route 6 Artisan Trail is a program of the PA Route Heritage Corridor and the PA Route 6 Alliance. The program is funded through a grant from PA Department of Conservation and Recreation.

Artisan Trail Travel Itineraries:

 

Read past Monthly Features:

March 2015 - Maple Month

February 2015 - Washington and Lincoln Connections