Artist Baskin featured at LMC
Mitchell County native Frank Baskin is the featured artist at the 38th annual Alumni Arts and Crafts Show and Sale taking place July 10-July 18 in the Cannon Student Center on the campus of Lees-McRae College as part of Alumni Frolic Week.
Baskin, a wood craftsman from Spruce Pine, is a regular at the Alumni Arts and Crafts Show. He has shown his work at the show for the past five years.
Specializing in kitchen utensils made to order, Baskin says his best selling item is a Lazy Susan that features a blend of exotic wood from South Africa and South America, along with domestic wood, such as maple. He also makes a crescent shaped wine caddy, serving spoons, cutting boards, and much more.
"My use of exotic woods is my signature, so to speak," Baskin said. "I just like to be creative and innovative. If it hasn't been done before, then I'd like to do it."
A former industrial engineer for Henredon Furniture Industries, Baskin began his wood-crafting career 35 years ago by bringing scrap wood home from the factory and "playing around with it."
Since his retirement, he now takes special orders for his unique pieces and participates in just two craft shows a year, with this month's Lees-McRae Alumni Arts and Crafts Show being one of them.
Baskin is also a vendor in the Home of the Perfect Christmas Tree Store in Spruce Pine. This store is best known for having its Christmas ornaments purchased and displayed on one of the White House Christmas trees in 2002 during the Bush Administration.
Since its inception, the Alumni Arts and Crafts Show has contributed more than $240,000 to college projects, including the purchase of computers, audio-equipment and physical plant improvements. In addition, an invested endowment of $135,000 provides annual Alumni Arts and Crafts Scholarships to worthy students. All proceeds benefit the college.
"I choose to continually be a part of the Lees-McRae Alumni Arts and Crafts Show because I love contributing to a scholarship fund," Baskin said. "I wish I could give 100 percent of my profit."
The schedule for the show is as follows: Saturday, July 10, 9:30 a.m. to 4 p.m.; Sunday, July 11, 1 to 4 p.m.; Monday, July 12 through Saturday, July 17, 9:30 a.m. to 4 p.m.; Sunday, July 18, 1 to 4 p.m.
The show and sale is free and open to the public. It will be held inside the Cannon Student Center on the campus of Lees-McRae College in Banner Elk. For more information about the Arts and Crafts Show or Alumni Frolic Week, contact Michelle Scott at (828) 898-2489 or (firstname.lastname@example.org)