More than 300 woodturners from throughout Oregon, Washington, Idaho, Montana and California will show off their skills this weekend during the second annual Oregon Woodturning Symposium at the Linn County Fair & Expo Center.
“There will be a lot of neat stuff on display. It’s an opportunity for anyone attending to bring their wood pieces they are proud of to show off,” said Mark Choitz, a member of the Willamette Valley Woodturners Club.
Choitz, who lives near Lewisburg, said the public is invited to drop in for free and view an "Instant Gallery" of wood products turned by hobbyists and professionals.
There will also be three days of skills seminars taught by professionals from around the country.
Choitz said there are five woodturning clubs in Oregon. The Willamette Valley Club has about 120 members and meets at 6:30 p.m. the second Thursday of each month at the Senior Center in Salem.
“For anyone who has any inclination of getting into woodturning, this is a great opportunity to meet and ask questions of guys who turn wood for a living,” Choitz said. “Classes will range from woodturning basics on up to some really high-end stuff, such as turning thin-walled vessels, wood carving and wood burning.”
Choitz said the first symposium was held at the Expo Center in 2015. Plans are to hold one every other year, he said.
This year’s event will include the donation of wooden boxes with lids to children hospitalized with serious health issues.
“Hospitals provide sick children with beads to mark special events in their treatments,” Choitz said. “We provide the wooden boxes they can put those beads in.”
He hopes there will be 50 boxes turned in by club members and they will be donated to hospitals in Kalispell, Montana, and Tacoma, Washington.
In addition to seminar instructors, the event will include a number of vendor displays.