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Calico Fort opens Saturday

Exhibitors from as far away as New York will be in Fort Deposit this weekend to participate in the 45th annual Calico Fort Arts and Crafts Fair. (File Photo)

Exhibitors from as far away as New York will be in Fort Deposit this weekend to participate in the 45th annual Calico Fort Arts and Crafts Fair. (File Photo)

Exhibitors from as far away as New York will be in Fort Deposit this weekend to participate in the 45th annual Calico Fort Arts and Crafts Fair. (File Photo)

Exhibitors from as far away as New York will be in Fort Deposit this weekend to participate in the 45th annual Calico Fort Arts and Crafts Fair. (File Photo)

The 45th annual Calico Fort Arts and Crafts Fair will be better than ever, according to event organizers.

The arts and crafts fair, which is held annually in Fort Deposit, is one of the oldest, largest and most popular fairs in the South.

This year’s weekend-long event features two new additions.

Frieda Cross, president of the Fort Deposit Arts Council, which sponsors the event, announced recently that the natural amphitheater, where continuous entertainment is provided during the fair, has been covered.

According to Cross, the newly covered amphitheater will be named in honor of a person to be named later in the tradition of Miss Nettie’s Porch that overlooks the amphitheater, Paul’s Perch and Wanna’s Food Court.

Cross also pointed out that as structures at Calico Fort are named such as

This year’s event will also feature an “Antique Alley.” The alley will showcase a select group of antique dealers.

In addition to the antiques, there will be 125 exhibitors with handmade arts and crafts.

This year exhibitors will be coming from the North Carolina, South Carolina, Georgia, Wisconsin, Tennessee, Mississippi, New York, Louisiana, Florida and every part of Alabama. All have been specially selected to represent the best artisans and craftsmen in their respective areas.

One can expect to find hand sewing, painted clothing, woodworking, leather goods, rattlesnake skin accessories, stained and beveled glass, pottery, garden statuary, wind chimes, toys of every sort, jewelry designers, pine needle and basket weaving, rockerless chairs, furniture in Cyprus, twig and vine, bird houses, pastel, oil, pen and ink art and plants of all kinds.

Cross said, $2,500 and trophies and ribbons will awarded to exhibitors selected by an independent judge.

Organizers have also enlarged the children’s area, which features pony rides, water wobble, a trampoline jump, petting zoo and flint knapping.

Entertainment will include Silver Creek, an old-fashioned barber shop quartet, Max Conway and the Girl Next Door, Ashley Jackson, Adrian Johnson, Beth Cooper and Caleb Luckie.

The Butler County Humane Society volunteers will  once again provide a free pet sitting area, according to Cross.

Gates will be open Saturday from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. and Sunday from 9 a.m. to

The fun starts Saturday when the gates open from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. and Sunday from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m.

Admission is $5 for adults and $2 for children.  All proceeds go to local charitable organizations including the Volunteer Fire Department.