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Tennessee Pottery Festival

In its second year at the Great Smoky Mountains Heritage Center, the Tennessee Pottery Festival returns on Saturday, May 5th. Located in Townsend, this festival is destined to become a yearly tradition with a hand-picked selection of renowned potters sharing their clay art. Last year’s success has made it possible for the growth the festival in 2018. This year’s festival will offer more types of pottery by a larger selection of potters with more demonstrations and more door prizes. With half of the artists hailing from Tennessee, this shows that there is a great passion for this hand-crafted art. With an even larger selection of returning and new potters, this event will give a chance for pottery collectors to meet the artists and purchase pieces to take home. The potters for 2018 have been juried to offer the best in earthenware and stoneware.

This festival was created to showcase the many different styles and varieties of handmade clay art and help share the talent of these artists. The event will run from 10 am to 4 pm (rain or shine) and is located outside the Heritage Center in the Historic Village. Admission is $5 for adults (GSMHC members and non-members), and children 5 and under will be free.

A collection of the nation’s finest potters from Tennessee, Georgia, New York, North Carolina, Georgia, Ohio, Michigan, and Louisiana will display and sell their art for a wide range of prices. This is a perfect time to learn from and discuss different styles and forms of pottery with the expert potters. With the unique backdrop of the Heritage Center, the equally unique pieces of art are sure to delight shoppers.  Many different styles of pottery will be showcased and available for purchase, including wheel thrown, functional stoneware, clay sculpture, horsehair, earthenware, and Raku.

2018’s featured artist is Alysha Baier, who will hold demonstrations throughout the day. Baier is a ceramic artist working out of Honeoye Pottery in Honeoye, NY, located in the Finger Lakes region of upstate NY.  She keeps a whimsical and loose approach to her work by taking wheel thrown forms and altering the surfaces. Her style is also known for slip design that complements the altered forms. Though Baier focuses mainly on the production of functional tableware, she also has a line of decorative horse hair pottery.

MOOYAH Burgers, Fries & Shakes will be serving up lunch for an additional charge, and live music will also be on hand in the Historic Village.

“We are so proud of the 2017 festival, and we are excited about the future that is in store for 2018 and beyond,” said Logan Hull, Director of Special Events at the Great Smoky Mountain Heritage Center. “We have grown quite a bit and are focused on providing THE place to find unique and creative pieces of pottery!”

Special thanks to our sponsors: Blount Partnership, Richard and Joni Maples, and our media sponsor The Daily Times.

For more information, visit or

Great Smoky Mountains Heritage Center
123 Cromwell Drive
Townsend, TN 37882

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