Flint Knappers festival begins April 25
by Mark Andrews
Apr 05, 2013 | 2016 views | 0 0 comments | 15 15 recommendations | email to a friend | print
Projectile points, tools and other items formed through flint knapping. SKIP BUTLER/The Daily Tribune News, File
Projectile points, tools and other items formed through flint knapping. SKIP BUTLER/The Daily Tribune News, File
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From April 25-28, Gatewood Park on Lake Allatoona will host the 14th Annual North Georgia Flint Knappers and Primitive Arts Festival.

“This is a primitive arts festival and it’s kind of like an arts and crafts show, but on steroids,” event representative Mike Blackston said.

According to an event press release, “There will be plenty of handmade crafts, primitive tools, primitive weapons and works of art. Demonstrations will start at 9 a.m. on Saturday and will include arrowhead, spear point and stone knife making, Atlatl demonstration, arrow and bow making, fire building, hide tanning, basketry, cordage, primitive snares and traps, a nature walk identifying useful and [edible] plants, soapstone working, pottery and much more.”

Blackston said the public will be invited to participate in some of the demonstrations.

“All of these events are free. There are vendors there if somebody wants to buy arrowheads or something that looks Native American they can,” Blackston said. He added, “There are no actual real artifacts sold at our show. We don’t allow that. Everything is made by hand and is a reproduction from originals.”

This year will feature Artifact ID Day on Saturday, April 27, featuring pottery expert Lloyd Schroder, who will be available to ID artifacts brought in by the public. A performance by the White Family Singers will wrap up the day.

He said Gatewood Park is an “excellent venue” for such an event.

“The entire show is laid out around the paved walkway that goes around Gatewood Park. There are pavillions for people to sit at and there will be food available,” Blackston said. “All in all it’s a good event, you can go out there all day with your family and not spend a penny if you don’t want to.”

He said the event itself has existed in Cartersville for about 20 years, but has been held at the Gatewood Park location for the past 14 years. “This all started as a bunch of people who made arrowheads — which is called flint knapping — usually getting together once a month to make these things and knock them out, and somebody said ‘why don’t we have a pow wow,’ and they set it up for a couple of days in some other locations and would camp out.

“One thing led to another and some guy would have ... some rocks he’d like to sell or some arrowheads he’d like to sell and the next thing you know, there was a following of people who had stuff they made specifically to sell,” Blackston said.

The event will last through April 28 with events beginning from 8 a.m. until the evening.

According to the press release, “For those wishing to participate as vendors, a modern campground with full hookups is located next to the show site. Cost for camper sites is $24.00 with senior discounts available. Primitive camping (tents) is permitted at $11 per night. Additionally there are conveniently located motels nearby. ... Vendors may camp at their vending site for $11 per night, but no campfires are permitted. Vendor fee is $25.00 per 15 foot space. No electricity will be available. Vendors must supply their own tents, tables and supplies.”

For more information contact Event Coordinator Dave Swetmon at 770-304-8760, or 678-480-1932 after April 26, or email questions to deltaworm@charter.net; or contact Blackston at 706-283-7143, or 706-371-0778 after April 26, or email questions to captmike03@hotmail.com.

Visit the event website at http://northgeorgiaknapin.yolasite.com/.