Spring Green Arts and Crafts Fair

Jefferson Street
Spring Green, WI 53588

History of the Spring Green Arts and Crafts Fair:

The fair was started in 1969 to support the arts in the River Valley area. The idea for the first Spring Green Arts and Crafts Fair was born over a bridge game. "Wouldn’t it be nice if we had an art fair?," Helene Duren remembers saying to Virgil Steele while they were playing bridge one winter night. At that time, she had been thinking that there must be some good project to promote Spring Green in a nice, clean family way. The next step was to pitch this wonderful idea to the Spring Green Chamber of Commerce, which would be Steele’s assignment. Luckily, they received it with open arms and even put up $300 in seed money just in case the fair didn’t succeed, but the money was never needed. "After that I was put in the position of putting my money where my mouth was," Duren said. "I was asked to organize it." She recalled that the board was extremely helpful in providing assistance on organizing the fair. The Baraboo Art Association and many other art groups were also very helpful, she said. The very first fair had about 125 artists and was scheduled to be held Saturday and Sunday, July 17 and 18, on the lawn of a house located on the corner of Jefferson and Worcester streets where BMO Harris Bank now stands. The house was owned by the school district and was used for administrative offices. It rained on Saturday, but cleared enough for the fair to go on as planned. Sunday was not such a fortunate day. "At 5:30 a.m. Sunday morning there was a cloudburst," Duren recalls. "Those men from the chamber board came down like knights in shining armor and moved us to the high school gym." Despite the rain the fair was a big success.

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