Photos by Chris Hendrickson
This year’s Gold Dust Days festival in Gold Bar was pure gold!
The three-day festival took place last weekend and was by all accounts a great success, with golden sunshine and refreshing mountain breezes the entire time.
“Gold Dust Days was amazing! This is by far the best selection of top quality arts and crafts vendors you could possibly find. The music, the weather, the car show, the kids’ activities were fabulous,” said Debbie Copple, director of the Sky Valley Chamber of Commerce.
The arts and crafts booths featured many hand-crafted items by local artists including jewelry, candles and other knickknacks.
Index resident and silversmith Karin Martin displayed her custom jewelry which included bracelets, rings and necklaces all made from unique looking semi-precious stones and sterling silver. Martin has been designing jewelry since 1980, and will also have a booth at the Index Arts Festival next weekend.
Gold Bar resident Dee Cook displayed her husband’s coffee table art which he creates using agates, shells, driftwood and other stones collected by hand from the Oregon Coast. He fashions the materials into figurines encompassing many different shapes such as animals, dinosaurs, plants and even people.
Monica Vickers of Green Lady Creations was on hand with a variety of her hand-poured scented candles, soaps, body splashes and other products. Vickers said that Gold Dust Days will be her last festival of the summer, and she is looking forward to spending some time enjoying her 7-year-old son’s newfound football career.
From pageants to pin-ups, this year’s Gold Dust Days featured searches for some talented and gracious ladies.
The Miss Gold Dust Pageant was held Friday night in the Gold Bar Elementary School gym. Part of this year’s theme was giving back to the community, so the girls collected non-perishable food items as a part of the competition. Sultan resident Lin’z Lucey, the winner of Miss Teen Gold Dust, had never before competed in a beauty pageant.
“It was my first pageant ever so it was very exciting,” said Lucey.
A part of the car show hosted by the Rat Bastards Car Club, the 1950s pin-up contest was held on Saturday afternoon. Participants dazzled the crowd with their dresses, poses and displays of talent.
First place Gold Dust Pin-Up winner Miss Autumn De Vine performed a spirited rendition of “Look at Me, I’m Sandra Dee,” winning over the onlookers. Runner-up Sweet ‘n Lo Steel Beans sang “Don’t Sit Under the Apple Tree,” and third place winner Bella Bambina gave a brief sneak peek into her burlesque routine.
The popular kids’ play area “Kids’ Central” featured lasso lessons, chalk drawings, a bouncy house and other activities.
Gold Dust Days is a festival that continues to grow each year. This year’s theme was “bigger and better than before.”
This year’s Civil War encampment featured guns, cannons, and folks dressed in authentic civil war era gear. The war re-enactors often came over to the main festival area on the hay wagon to listen to music or check out the arts and crafts booths.
“The best new addition was definitely the hay wagon rides from the Civil War encampment back to the school site. Loads of fun,” said Copple.