WOODSTOCK, Vt. - A century ago, most of Vermont's land had been cleared for farming. These days, roughly 80 percent of the state has again become forest, and wood is one of the state's biggest products.
Next Saturday and Sunday, you can see many of the ways Vermonters use the material, at the fourth annual Fine Furniture & Woodworking Festival in Woodstock. Craftsmen and manufacturers will exhibit and sell their work. The emphasis is on fine furniture, in styles including mission, Shaker, Queen Anne, Colonial, and contemporary.
Several furniture makers will also demonstrate their craft, among them Richard Montague, who powers his old-fashioned lathe by foot pedal.
Also, Craig Anderson will demonstrate guitar making, and Randy Crossman the art of jigsaw puzzles. Anderson and several other musicians will play.
The fair is a few miles from the 550-acre Marsh-Billings-Rockefeller National Historical Park. The park offers attractions and activities for adults and children, including hikes, horse-drawn wagon rides in the woods, and a portable sawmill where you can see how trees get milled into lumber.
And if all else fails, you can admire the changing colors of leaves on 100-year-old trees.
Fourth annual Fine Furniture & Woodworking Festival, Sept. 29-30, Union Arena (Woodstock High School grounds), Route 4, Woodstock, Vt., 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. daily. Adults $7, under age 18 free; parking is free. A free shuttle will take visitors to the Marsh-Billings-Rockefeller National Historical Park.
Directions: From Interstate 89 north, take exit 1. Turn left off exit ramp onto Route 4 west to large sign on left for Woodstock Union High School. Union Arena is at the end of the parking lot to your right. More info at www.vermontwoodfestival.org.