Archive for Thursday, February 24, 2011

Marble Crazy coming back next weekend

February 24, 2011

Moon Marble Company owner Bruce Breslow is bringing the crazy back to Bonner Springs — at least when it comes to marbles.

The annual Marble Crazy will be next weekend, and even after 12 years of organizing the event that features marble-making artists from throughout the country, Breslow says he still gets excited about all of its many creative possibilities.

“When you get a lot of artists in one room and the energy starts building and flowing and people start sharing ideas, new ideas come about and new creations and new techniques and processes,” Breslow said. “So that’s what makes it crazy.”

This year the Marble Crazy will have a circus theme and will feature four new marble artists, along with a number of returning artists from Minnesota, California, Nebraska and Texas. Five artists are from Ohio.

“I call it the Ohio Contingency,” Breslow joked.

On Friday and Saturday of the event, the artists will take part in several different marble-making demonstrations, including lampworking, where the marbles are created using a blowtorch. There will be a glassblowing area, where attendees can see how larger marbles are created, and there will be machine marble-making demonstrations, as well.

The machine demonstrations will offer a throwback to the early days of marble making, Breslow says, as the two machines, designed by artist John McCormick, that will be used are “reminiscent of the very first marble machines,” which were created around the turn of the 20th century. According to marblecrazy.com, McCormick designed the machines using an original marble machine patent from 1902.

On Sunday, the Marble Crazy will move to the grand ballroom of the Holiday Inn-Olathe Medical Center where the Moon Marble Company, in conjunction with the Kansas City Marble Collectors Club, will play host to a marble collectors show, featuring antique marble vendors, marble games for youths and door prizes. The marble collectors show has been part of the Marble Crazy for eight years now. Breslow said the desire was to have the show closer to Bonner Springs this year, but the Olathe Holiday Inn offered the closest hotel ballroom to the area.

“We wanted to keep it close to this so that both places were close (together), but it couldn’t happen,” he said.

Unlike in previous years, Breslow said this year’s Marble Crazy won’t have a featured artist that teaches classes and workshops on marble-making — Breslow said featured artists receive a stipend for their work during the event and he wasn’t able to get anyone scheduled in time. But he said he was already working on next year’s event, where he is hoping to secure a female marble artist — a rare sight to be seen at a Marble Crazy.

“This one lady that I’ve been wanting to come for a long time, she always seems to be busy, so I figure if I schedule her ahead of time …” Breslow said, adding that there has been a lack in female artists represented at the Marble Crazy in the past. “I’d like to see some of the work from the women.”

With a following that has grown each and every year, Breslow said he expected this year’s Marble Crazy to be as successful as ever, especially with the feeling of spring being just around the corner.

“We’re thinking we’ll have well over 1,000 (attendees) each day,” Breslow said. “I think it’s (the) perfect time (to hold the event). Everybody’s ready to get out and do something and see something new, and we’re ready to get out; go see some artists in action.”

The Marble Crazy schedule is as follows:

• Noon to 9 p.m. Friday, March 4, at Moon Marble Company, 600 E. Front St.

• 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday, March 5, at Moon Marble Company

• 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Sunday, March 6, in the grand ballroom of the Holiday Inn-Olathe Medical Center, 101 W. 151st St., Olathe

Admission for all Marble Crazy events is free.

For more information, go to marblecrazy.com.

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