For the fourth consecutive year, Maumee Bay Carvers participated in the Grand Rapids, OH, Apple Butter Festival, held Sunday, October 11, 2015. Thousands of people attend this event annually. Our booth was located in front of the historic Town Hall. The event also included pioneer crafts, a juried art show, a living history village, bluegrass and country music, and the sweet smell of apple butter.
As part of our continuing outreach and mentoring program, we demonstrated decoy carving and painting techniques. And once again, we offered children the opportunity to paint silhouette heads of mallards, redhead ducks and of course, apples.
It has become a tradition for families to stop by our booth. Many of the parents said they can see how their kids' painting skills have progressed from year-to-year. And the children look forward to displaying their projects at home.
We distributed fliers and answered questions concerning our Wednesday Carve-A longs at WoodCraft in Toledo, Ohio, that are open to the public. We also promoted the upcoming Ohio Decoy Collectors and Carvers Show to be held March 12-13, 2016, in Strongsville, Ohio.
Most importantly, our painting activities provided children the opportunity to shut off their electronics and enjoy using their hands, minds and spirit in painting a duck head or apple.
The number of children who participated exceeded last year's estimate of 125. Club members Ted Fisher, Karen Higgins, Mark Langenderfer, Bob Lund, Garrett Secord, Steve Secord, and Jeff Thomas volunteered at the booth.
Contacts for the Maumee Bay Carvers are as follows:
Steve Secord, President -
Garrett Secord, Vice President
Karen Higgens, Secretary
Jim Frankowski, Treasurer - 419 836 7931
A special program for Jim Wilson will be held at the Fallen Timbers Ducks Unlimited Banquet. It will be held on Saturday March 12, 2016. They are looking for any items that can be auctioned or raffled off (any hand carved decoys for example). The funds raised from this event will go to acquire a park bench at Side Cut Metro Park in memory of Jim Wilson.
Jim Wilson Passes
Jim enjoyed many things in life hunting fishing and most of all carving waterfowl! He was able to carve some of the best waterfowl decoys that are dotted across the country. He won the Wards World Championship in 1992 with a great Mallard!
Over the years he won at the North American Decoy Championship, the Ohio Decoy Carvers and Collectors Decoy Show, the Maumee Bay Carving Show and many others!
Best of all Jim became an instructor of waterfowl carving, when he bought the Governors Inn, which was operated as fine restaurant. Jim was spent most of his life in the restaurant business serving people with great food. His love of sharing his talents with others on the third floor of the Inn. He invited his friends to join him carving decoys. It was this room that may be one of the places Jim will visit when he has chance in the future. One evening we learned that when Jim was leaving he noticed the lights were on in the carving room! He asked his son who was with him,
“Did you leave the lights on? Mike replied with surprise, “I shut them off! “ Must be the ghosts at work!
We talked about the ghosts that were in the building, who Jim believed were there! On in particular was a young girl who would go around the restaurant areas and would touch the coins that were left for the servers. A team of ghost busters came in to visit the Inn and we toured the attic floor, the third floor and then second floor! The ghost buster asked to be silent, as she believed that there was a something that she felt was there! Seeing nothing we went to the main level and then she heard something on her machine to indicate there were sounds of ghosts, later we learned there were indeed sounds and more importantly orbs of light near the ceiling of the Inn!
Jim spent much of the time turning out new carvers! He was responsible for having a Kids painting seminar for many years at the Ohio Decoy Collectors and Carving show. Over years many of children learned about the love of waterfowl from Jim and his team of helpers.
Jim made many friends over the years from all over the country! He would spend time with them looking at their waterfowl and learning and offering comments.
I believe that Jim will return to Governors Inn and join with the others who are in spirit only causing a bit of fracas,
We will miss you and hope maybe to join you in the Carving Hall of Fame, as I am sure there will be one! Maybe just sitting and carving in third floor carving room!