Front Street Festival Returns with Classic Crafts, Music

Theo nguồn tin trên mạng thành phố Arlington ở tiểu bang Texas

Some need a plutonium-powered DeLorean to take a trip back in time. Others just needed to brave a few flash rain storms.

At the annual Front Street Festival at Knapp Heritage Park on Saturday, visitors got to witness demonstrations in blacksmithing, wood turning, pot throwing, and other crafts that were symbolic of the early 1900s. They toured several buildings, including a one-room wooden schoolhouse, a one room cabin, and a blacksmith barn. They even got an earful of not so pioneer-era music including sounds from the Alan Fox Band.

It was all part of the Arlington Historical Society’s effort to teach people about the pioneer era in Arlington.

“Metal working is one of the oldest art forms,” said Festival Organizer James Ryan, who worked inside the blacksmithing barn holding demonstrations by using a farrier’s anvil to create mini horseshoes for kids. “You can be a blacksmith all your life and never learn it all.”

The Front Street Festival, which began in 2004 as a fundraiser for the downtown Arlington park, also serves as a way to draw attention to it.

“Most people that I meet out here tell me they never knew the park was here,” said Ryan. “By simply touring the buildings here people can get a good education on Arlington’s history.”
Other artisans demonstrating their work included wood-turner David Walker who fashioned bowls and pioneer-era ring holders on his lathe and fabricator Andrew Holt who made jewelry from scratch.

Perhaps the person who was most in-character was Cheryl Taylor-Smith, who was dressed as pioneer schoolteacher Annie Webb Blanton. As Taylor-Smith weaved throughout the rows of old wooden school desks, she handed out informative flyers about the schoolhouse which included “Rules for Teachers – 1872.”

“Among the rules were, women teachers who marry or engage in unseemly conduct will be dismissed and each teacher will bring a bucket of water and a scuttle of coal for the day’s session,” said Taylor-Smith.

A psychology professor at Tarrant County College (TCC) and long-serving member of the Arlington Historical Society, Taylor-Smith truly enjoys teaching visitors about Arlington’s history.

“We need to preserve it as much as possible,” she said.

Knapp Heritage Park, located at 201 W. Front Street is open Saturday and Sunday from 1 p.m. to 4 p.m. The park also hosts free blacksmith presentations on the last Sunday of each month. For more information on the park or the Arlington Historical Society, visit



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