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Appalachian Events
Appalachian Artisans Fest - October 4-5, 2014

"What the Hay" Hay Sculpture Contest - October 3-5, 2014

"Appalachian Mountain Christmas"-  November 14-16,2014​

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What The Hay is going on this Fall?


Handmade creations galore can be explored at The Appalachian Artisans Fest from October 3 - 5, 2014.

Hilltop Designs in Winchester, Ohio hosts this annual autumn event. And it features artisans and demonstrators representing all kinds of handmade creations, such as candy, clothing, quilts, organics, primitives, jams and jellies, honey and maple syrup, stained glass, produce, pottery and more.

New for the festival this year is a dinner show on Friday Oct 3 from 5-7pm featuring singer songwriter Steve Free and his Band. A “sneak peek” of this year’s returning and new artists will be open to the public on this night as well. A new addition to the fest is the hay sculpture contest, which will be a battle of artistry amongst high schools and organizations. Voting for the sculptures begins at 5:00 on this evening.

“What the Hay?”

The “What The Hay” sculpture contest requires sculptures to be made out of hay or straw, but chicken wire, paint and small farm or gardening tools can be incorporated as props or decorative pieces. Hay sculptures will be assembled at Hilltop Designs (event location) by midnight September 30th. A 20’ by 20’ space is allotted for each entry. The contest is open to all high schools, churches or organizations that would like an opportunity for further fundraising. There is no entry fee for participating

Voting is done by money donations. Each sculptor is required to make their own eye catching voting box. Voting will only take place during the fest hours.

The entry with the most money at 3pm on October 5th, will be named and announced at 5pm that day. The first place winner will be awarded not only the money in their box, but also an additional $1,000. All participating entries keep the money they raised during this contest. 

Many fest favorites will be returning including Grassy Run Historical Arts Village. Grassy Run demonstrates life in the 1700-1800’s, with classes in rope making or how to cook over open fires. Also returning are the hay maze for any age, the petting zoo, Adams/Brown Recycling “Green Machine”, a Native American teepee and the amazing toy tractor and farm display by award-winning Jim Gorman of Hillsboro, Ohio.

Entertainment for the weekend, in addition to Steve Free for the Friday night dinner show and again on Sunday at 1:00, will be the Fancy Free Cloggers at noon on Saturday and then at 3:00, the West Union High School Steel Drum Band. Extra musical entertainment for Saturday and Sunday will be Jay and Kris Fetters of Sounds Unlimited.

Eat restaurant style inside Hilltop Designs’ Event Center, with mouth- watering food from Farmhouse Catering and Big “E” BBQ. Top it off with fabulous desserts by Buckeye Confections. No outdoor festival is complete without cotton candy, funnel cakes, snow cones and deep fried Snickers.

Hours will be: 5pm to 7pm on Friday, October 3rd; 9am to 6pm on Saturday, October 4th; and 10am to 5pm on Sunday October 5th.

For more details and entry form for the hay sculpture contest and the dinner show’s menu and to make reservations, go to or simply pick up the phone and call 937-695-5545.

Enjoy great food, fun and entertainment, and get “hay-cited” in the hay contest competition. Hilltop Designs is located at 9764 Tri-County Road on the outskirts of Winchester, Ohio 45697.