April 28, 2019, 1:00 - 4:00 PM
The Essex County Hand Spinners Guild will demonstrate the magical art of spinning fibers into yarn on hand spindles and spinning wheels, some antique or traditional in appearance, and some contemporary that have a modern look. Weavers will also demonstrate how cloth is made on a variety of looms. Visitors will also be invited to try their hands at spinning and weaving.
Spinning and weaving fibers have been part of human existence for tens of thousands of years. While the tools have been modified over time, the basic result of twisting fibers into useable string, yarn or rope and then weaving it in an organized manner remains the same. Despite the industrial revolutions of the 18th and 19th centuries, which mechanized these processes, people throughout the world carry on these earlier practices and many follow traditions particular to a specific culture. In this country, hand spinners and weavers continue these crafts for the love of learning about, and continuing a tradition, and the ability to produce yarns and fabrics that are unique.
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June 9, 2019, 1:00 PM
Juneteenth, an African American celebration marking the end of slavery in the United States, will be the focus of the June program in collaboration with the South Orange Maplewood Community Coalition on Race. The afternoon will include dancers, storytelling, a quilt display, musicians, activities for families and children, Civil War Colored Troop reenactors, as well as information about New Jersey’s history of slavery, which continued up until the time of the Civil War.
As part of the celebration, we are sponsoring a student essay contest on communications barriers between people of different races. All students in grades 6 through 12 who are residents of Maplewood or South Orange are eligible. Deadline is May 28. Read more information about the contest.