There may be a RWCS Chapter near you
Learn more on our Chapters Page.
Membership is only $35 a year and includes six full-color newsletters and exclusive, members only, online content
“CROCKFEST” and Other New Events to Headline
Red Wing Collectors Society’s 35th Anniversary Celebration
Red Wing, MN- In celebration of the Red Wing Collectors Society’s (RWCS) 35th anniversary, several exciting new events will take place during the RWCS Annual Convention, which is scheduled for July12-14 in Red Wing, Minn.
“Whether you have a casual interest in Red Wing stoneware and pottery, or you’re a die-hard collector, the RWCS Convention is the place to spend your summer vacation this year,” says RWCS 35th Anniversary Committee Co-chair Wendy Callicoat. “From the new CROCKFEST event we’ve created to all the auctions and sales and everything in between, attendees are sure to have a great time.”
New 35th Anniversary events on Thursday, July 12 include a free breakfast for RWCS members to recognize the Society’s charter members at 8 a.m., a balloon release honoring departed members and Lunch & Learn Sessions at noon and Shared Interest Groups from 2:30 to 3:30 p.m.; each of these events will take place at Red Wing High School.
On Friday, July 13, a time capsule will be buried at the North Star Monument in Red Wing’s historic pottery district at 8:30 a.m., a pig roast lunch will be served at Red Wing High School from 11 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. and CROCKFEST – a festival featuring food, music by the Cruisers, kids activities and fun for the whole Red Wing community – will be held from 5 to 9 p.m. at Red Wing’s Central Park.
In addition to these new activities, RWCS members have their lineup of usual favorites to attend during Convention, including street sales held throughout the community, a string of auctions highlighted by the always popular RWCS Thursday Night Auction at Red Wing High School, educational seminars and the official RWCS Show & Sale at Red Wing High School that begins for members at 9 a.m. Saturday, July 14 and opens FREE to the public from 10:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m.
Other major activities include a “Crock Hunt” scavenger hunt around the historic Mississippi River town, the KidsView educational program for kids ages 3 to 12 and the Young Collectors Club for ages 13-20. There is also a special display room at Red Wing High School, where members create their own unique displays for the education and enjoyment of attendees, combined with some fun and creative competition.
The RWCS Foundation will also hold several events on Wednesday, July 11 to raise support and awareness for its new museum space – the north half of the Pottery Place Annex. (The RWCS Foundation Board in April signed a purchase agreement for the building, which is about 10,000 sq. ft. larger than the current Red Wing Pottery Museum that is located across the parking lot in Pottery Place.) These events include a food booth and pre-registration badge pickup outside the Pottery Place Annex, 2000 Old West Main St., from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m., guided tours of the Red Wing Pottery Museum from noon to 2 p.m. and a wine & cheese fundraiser from 6 to 10 p.m. The wine & cheese event will featuring both silent and live auctions and live music by musician Karl Burke.
An annual commemorative will be unveiled and distributed to members beginning Thursday, July 12. The commemorative piece is a closely guarded secret and there is much speculation as to what the piece will be each year. It is a miniature replica of a Red Wing pottery item with a limited number made, contributing to their increase in value in following years. Last year’s commemorative cobalt-decorated salt glaze churn was well-received by the membership.
Hannes Kuehn, who worked at the Red Wing Potteries as a mold maker in 1956, will officially kick off Convention with a keynote presentation at 10:30 a.m. July 12 in the Hove Auditorium at Red Wing High School, 2451 Eagle Ridge Dr. The presentation will be open to the public.
A good selection of topics are also on tap for the educational sessions on Friday, July 13, including an orientation for first timers, Red Wing salt glaze, Red Wing 101, recent finds from the old pottery dump, Red Wing dinnerware, history of the villages surrounding the Goodhue County clay pits, Minnesota’s New Ulm stoneware and digging old privies in search of antiques and artifacts. In addition, the RWCS Foundation will hold an info session on all its exciting new developments and what it has planned for the coming years.
Another unique aspect of the RWCS Convention is the participation of the younger generation through the KidsView program. The Society is on the leading edge of creating engaging and educational ways to get the younger generations involved in collecting. The focus on these RWCS members is an important part of the vision of the Society to ensure its continued existence and growth. There are many interactive and challenging activities and seminars for children ages 3-12 to get involved in, such as learning how to bid at an auction, what to look for in an antique, and several hands-on pottery creation projects.
To further complement KidsView, the RWCS Young Collectors is entering its second year of helping Red Wing collectors ages 13 to 20 grow their interest in Red Wing. This is a great opportunity to learn more about Red Wing, develop new friendships through peer-to-peer discussion groups and participate in hands-on activities.
To learn more about all the events and activities of the 35th Anniversary Convention Celebration, visit the RWCS website event page for the Convention. The RWCS can also be found on Facebook and followed on Twitter.
The Red Wing Collectors Society was founded in 1977 in Red Wing, Minn. and is devoted to educating people about all American pottery. There are more than 4,000 members worldwide. The Red Wing Potteries had diverse pottery lines that included stoneware, dinnerware and art pottery. For more information or to become a member, call the RWCS business office at 800-977-7927, e-mail email@example.com or log on to www.redwingcollectors.org.