BARCO — Two several years ago, Don and Donna Drew have been commonly on the road 40 weekends a 12 months touring the East Coastline advertising their “Copper Creations” at arts and crafts festivals.
The Drews’ merchandise are well-known. The few have been promoting their pure copper hand-crafted sculptures at arts and crafts festivals and other functions for in excess of 25 yrs, and they’ve averaged about $200,000 a calendar year in revenue.
But that was before the COVID-19 pandemic.
Final calendar year was a bust and the Drews have attended just 5 demonstrates this yr. As a result, their revenue have hovered all-around $12,000.
“I really do not treatment who you are, which is a strike,” Don Drew stated. “This is how we make a dwelling. We have completed 1,000 reveals all over the state.”
Final weekend the Drews attended their sixth show as they were just one of all-around 85 distributors at the Currituck Arts and Crafts Festival at Currituck Superior School. The celebration was sponsored by the Coinjock Ruritan Club.
The Drews were set up and ready to go in advance of the doorways opened at 9 a.m. Saturday. Drew reported he’s hoping items are slowly returning to usual.
“We have skipped this the very last pair of several years,” he reported. “Our social group is the fellow artists at the demonstrates. We have misplaced some buddies, and that is challenging to communicate about.”
Drew explained the Coinjock Ruritan pageant as a excellent party with great people today. He and his spouse experienced all over 200 copper sculptures for sale, ranging from $5 to $500.
“We appreciate coming to North Carolina and doing these displays,” Drew reported. “We have been coming right here for the previous 12 yrs. Monetarily, we do quite well at this demonstrate, and we normally have.’’
The Drews’ copper wildlife sculptures of fish, birds, sea turtles and crabs among the other folks are well-known. But the downtime throughout the pandemic allowed the couple to come up with a new sculpture termed the “Tree of Everyday living.”
“Our new Tree of Life piece has been pretty preferred,” Drew reported. “We have had the time to assume about some new items, and we have savored that.”
Jack Ireland of Shamrock Studio in Shiloh experienced a primary site in the vicinity of the entrance doorway to offer his personalized-framed prints. Ireland has been framing his possess images and other people’s images for 40 yrs.
Like other distributors, Ireland, 76, was delighted to be back again at the Currituck festival, which is a person of just a handful of shows he attends each year with his wife, Dottie.
“This is mainly a passion,” Ireland claimed. “My rates are acceptable due to the fact I love doing it. If I find an artist I like, I will get some prints and body them myself.’’
Eire reported gross sales at his studio have been continuous the past two a long time in part because there are several other framing businesses in the spot.
“This is starting to turn out to be a organization and not a passion,” Ireland explained with a snicker. “I however enjoy it.”
Dottie Eire explained she is content that her spouse still enjoys the get the job done.
“He demands to have a hobby for the reason that he doesn’t sit properly,” Dottie Eire mentioned with a snicker.
Barbara Snowden with the Currituck County Historic Preservation Commission was promoting the guide “The Goodliest and Most Pleasing Territory: A Building Survey of Currituck County and the Northern Outer Banks” at the pageant.
Another product that Snowden claimed the fee is very pleased of are prints of the Historic Currituck Courthouse.
“It displays what the courthouse applied to search like in 1898,” reported Snowden, a neighborhood historian and retired educator. “We are coming up on the 300th anniversary of the true 1st courthouse that was constructed in 1723.”
Craft-goers were being waiting around exterior for the doorways to open Saturday and Coinjock Ruritan Club officers claimed the attendance was just one of the ideal at any time for the party that started in 2009.
“At situations on the two days it was extremely fast paced,” stated club member Tom Oakes. “We had a serious fantastic event.”