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Historic Zoar Village's 44th Annual Harvest Festival and Antique Show is scheduled for Saturday, July 29, 10 a.m.-5 p.m. and on Sunday, July 30, 10 a.m.-4 p.m., one week earlier than usual.
This year's Harvest Festival date was moved to accommodate the growing number of visitors, antique dealers and artisans who come to the area and stay overnight. In recent years, lodging from New Philadelphia to Akron has become increasingly tough to reserve during the first weekend of August due to the large number of visitors attending enshrinement events at the Pro Football Hall of Fame Festival in Canton.
"Last year, so many of our antique dealers needed a place to stay that we had to book rooms in Youngstown, 83 miles away, and transport them to Zoar each day," says Jon Elsasser, president Zoar Community Association. "Stark and Tuscarawas counties are very fortunate to have attractions that are so popular with travelers this time of year, and it's great for our local economy. But something had to give."
While the date has changed, Harvest Festival attractions remain the same, including more high quality country antique dealers than ever. The antique sale tent size is being expanded to accommodate the increase. Harvest Festival is one of the nation's most prestigious antiques shows, with dealers from across the U.S. sharing unique finds with early American style enthusiasts and decorators.
This is also the third year for the Artisan Showcase, featuring juried artisans who specialize in folk art, furniture and fine crafts.
"Artisans are screened for their ability, attention to quality and authenticity of their wares," says Carol Murphy, chair of the Zoar Community Association's Harvest Festival Committee. "We've assembled a group of highly-respected craftspeople who create works that are complementary to the antique styles featured in the antiques show and sale. Many will perform handcraft demonstrations in their booths."
Additional attractions include:
° Herding dog and working animal demonstrations,
° Museum building tours and demonstrations on 19th-century methods in weaving, spinning, blacksmithing, and butter churning,
° Contemporary crafts for sale throughout the village,
° Horse-drawn wagon rides, and
° An antique car show near the Zoar Levee on Sunday, co-hosted by the Canton Chapter of the Antique Automobile Club of America (AACA).
A tent near the antique sale will feature homemade German food, beer and live musical performances throughout the weekend, including the Gottscheer Blaskapelle band of Cleveland on Saturday afternoon.
Attendance OptionsAdmission to the Antiques and Juried Artisan Showcase tents costs $9 for adults and is free for children 12 and under. The cost includes a wristband that provides access to all tents, events, demonstrations and museum buildings. Wristbands can be purchased at the Zoar Store & Visitors Center or at one of the outdoor admission booths.
Visitors who wish to enjoy the festival without entering the tents or historic buildings may do so free of charge. For more information, see www.historiczoarvillage.com or call 330-874-3011.
Historic Zoar Village was founded by German Separatists in 1817 and thrived as a communal settlement for more than 80 years. Zoar's historic district is listed on the National Register of Historic Places and was named a National Historic Landmark by the U.S. Department of the Interior in 2016.
Dozens of village structures have been painstakingly preserved through the collaborative efforts of the Zoar Community Association and the Ohio History Connection.