Faith Fourth festivities in full swing
By Drew Sechler
FAITH- If you’ve ever wanted a clear picture of what America is, then go to Faith in late June and early July and you will certainly see just that.
People smiling, kids screaming, the aroma of hotdogs and hamburgers and the sounds of just good, all-around summer fun.
The familiar sights are prevalent with the carnival rides, vendors, concession stands and roaming crowds.
A little different sight could be seen this year with World Champion Chainsaw gurus Dennis Beach and Luree MaGee.
Beach and MaGee have 30 years of chainsaw art experience between them.
Beach is from Pennsylvania while MaGee is from Idaho.
Hard Wood Carvers is the name of the pair’s business and they have traveled all around the world selling and showing off their work in places like Australia, Germany, Switzerland, Canada and the United States.
Beach recently won the world title in chain saw carving in Germany and he was part of the U.S.A. team that won the world title.
According to Beach and MaGee, there was very stiff competition there, but Beach said they ‘whupped’ the competition winning by 100 points.
That stat alone should let you know what kind of work you can see.
Their work will be auctioned off Saturday, so fairgoers will have the opportunity to bid on pieces of art carved with a chain saw.
“We’ve been getting really big crowds,” MaGee said.
About thirty people gathered to watch the two masters of their craft at work as they carved a bench featuring a figure of two sleeping bears.
Beach said the bear carvings are very popular.
The carvings usually go for a little less than $400.
The pair have been putting on shows nightly, wowing crowds with their seemingly magical chain saws.
“The unique part about our show is that we’re a team,” said MaGee.
The two will work on the same piece of wood simultaneously, instead of trying to race each other on two different items.
MaGee said they also carve ice, stone, coral, yard trees and, of course, wood.
Where do they get their ideas for their wood carvings?
“Everyday in life, we’re looking everywhere around us,” Beach said.
MaGee said they also like to go to local art galleries to find some interesting ideas.
The two were invited to the Faith Fourth festivities by Billy and Sue Clark of Smokey Mountain Amusements at the fair convention.
“When we go to a convention, we try and bring pieces,” MaGee said.
The Entertainers, from Charlotte, also performed beach music favorites enticing many to show off their dance moves.
The annual Faith Idol competition began Tuesday, with finals scheduled for Saturday at 7 p.m.
Randall Barger, entertainment chairman of the Faith Fourth festivities, said he thought numbers might be down.
“I really thought we would be down. We’ve had people come from all around,” Barger said of the events.
Pam Alexander, secretary of the Faith Fourth Committee, says she expects a large crowd at the parade, as usual.