Mohawk Valley Art & Woodcarving Association
December 2001
edited by
John Raucci & Mike Bloomquist

Next Meeting: January 8th, 2002

Time: 7:00pm

Sharpening and Honing Carving Tools 
presented by Marcus Kruger & George Hallenbeck


Letter from the President

What a great dinner!  What a great collection of carvings! What a great turnout! Boy did we do a good job of filling the Innman Center or what.  Someone did an informal head count, and came up with 72 folks in attendance, and a few more might have snuck in later.  We had two eight foot tables filled with food (drinks were elsewhere) and two eight foot tables filled with member carvings.  Then to cap the whole evening, George Hallenbeck treated us to another of his excellent slide shows.

The food was even better than last year, and there is no way to tell how those who did the cooking pulled that off.  It must have been Christmas magic.  Then the carvings... it seems we've been getting steadily better show-n-tell sessions ever since Dick Moran started them, but this was the best of the year.  There were a couple of Santas by our newer members. I remember really nice carvings from them at our last Christmas get together. What I don't remember is when I ever got that much better at carving over the course of one year.  There was a cat and a sign which read "What Part of 'Meow' Didn't you Understand?" by our kachina expert, Monte Foster.  Obviously inspired by someone well versed in cats as family members.  There was a team of draft horses hitched to a plow by Armand Hebert, who told us of his plowing experiences when he was younger.  This time the story was... ummmm... well this time it had no punchline like his coffin riding experience (see earlier issue).  Andy Ebli brought two wonderful carvings done in that Austrian style with the soft watercolor hues.  Andy gave us a brief and enlightening education in Austrian traditions.  The one figure he carved had a traditional hat with a "golden thingy" (looked like a tassel) laid on the front brim and hanging from the hat band.  As Andy explains it, when your not married you wear this on the front of the hat  Then, when you're married, you turn it to the back of the hat.  He then proceeded to display his carved bust of an older gentleman... with a hat... but no 'golden thingy'.  The gist of it seemed to be that, after you've been married long enough, you lose your 'golden thingy'. This was pointed out to us by Ron Meyers who's just a little quicker and sharper than the rest of us.  Seemed to be a somewhat harsh tradition to me, and I was going to ask Andy to elaborate, but everyone was... well, they were laughing to hard for me to be heard.

Again this year, Joe Rusik had his tiered tree full of carvings for grandchildren and other assorted youngsters of his family.  In a similar fine tradition perpetuated by previous club presidents, I dropped Joe's tree while handing it off to him.  Ahh, it's those fine, time honored traditions that separate us from other clubs.  I recall a certain predecessor of mine who separated Santa's head from his body when he performed this ritual.  I still have to devote more time to my technique since I believe all Joe's carvings were still intact after 'the drop' this year.

I don't mean to torture those who didn't make it to our Christmas shin dig this year.  There were several missing persons due to health reasons or logistics beyond their control.  We missed you all.  Just save this and use it as a reminder to try and make it next year.  As good as it was this Christmas Season, it would have been better still if you had been there. Hey Dick, maybe with January's carving show-n-tell we can include the new carving toys Santa brought our members. What do ya think?

Hope everyone's Christmas was excellent, Happy New Year, and hope to see you at January's club meeting.

Keep on Carvin’
-Mike Bloomquist->


Christmas Party!
The only things that I think equal the carving in this group are the food and fellowship.  The gathering of nearly seventy people and tables loaded with good things to eat attest to that.
            Because we were usually away the first week in December, I have always missed the party, George's fine photography and the carving display.  Now I know what I've been missing.
          My biggest regret is that I couldn't sample ALL of the food.  Everything looked delicious!  One dish that caught my fancy was a raspberry-Jello top over a creamy filling and a pretzel layer on the bottom.  If the editors can't be persuaded to publish recipes in the Newsletter, would the cook be willing to share the recipe, either by email to or at the next meeting?  It would be greatly appreciated.

Martha Colinas

Adirondack Carousel Project

Our former club president Carl Borst has been approached to carve an Adirondack carousel animal for the folks at Saranac Lake.  He has accepted and has committed himself to do a Raccoon on his own.  He also suggested that the club could do one of the other animals as a club project. There has been lots of interest shown by the membership at the Thursday group at the Inman center.  Everyone can contribute as I don't see why it couldn't get worked into our monthly meeting schedule somehow.  Here are a few of the details and if you have any other questions, please contact Carl at 355-2933 or email to; CarvinCarl Karen Loffler (The lady in charge of the carousel project) got some of the gray areas cleared. We have plenty of time as she is working within a 4 year target date to complete. We can start ours as soon as we pick an animal and submit sketches etc. The carousel will be full size scale (with a raccoon or otter of about 52" long and 12" wide) The other animals will be sized bigger or smaller accordingly.  We will be reimbursed for any materials (Wood, glue, paint etc.) Karen said that they would like to take a booth at our show to promote the carousel, when I mentioned it to her.

The Adirondack Carousel Inc.
 c/o Karen Loffler
  PO Box 1059
  Saranac Lake NY 12983

Here is a list of animals that we may choose from.

  • beaver
  • chip monk
  • fisher
  • merganser
  • mallard
  • bass
  • mink
  • moose
  • mouse
  • eagle
  • Canada goose
  • frog
  • porcupine
  • snowshoe rabbit
  • skunk
  • gr/blue heron
  • loon
  • perch
  • squirrel
  • work horse
  • Blk. fly
  • osprey
  • barred owl
  • trout
  • turkey
  • turtle

At Our Last Meeting

 On Dec 4th in lieu of our monthly meeting,  57 members and guests proceeded to "demolish" a wonderful covered dish display of food that would turn Martha Stewart green with envy! Delicious salads and appetizers, enticing, tasty entrees and boundless desserts delighted us all! It just gets better each year and this was our largest turnout ever! Martha Colinas remarked that maybe it's time to insert a Recipe column in our Newsletter! What do you think?  We could start off with that Raspberry Wonder  everyone raved about. It's a good suggestion. It was a wonderful evening for food, socializing and renewing friendships. If you didn't make it this year try to make it next year, you won't be sorry!     

George Hallenbeck

Classified Adds

If you would like to sell something and want to bring it to our monthly meeting to display it, you can advertise it here first so that members know when and where they can see what you are selling.  Let me know when you place your ads and I will get the word out if they can see it at an upcoming meeting.  Remember all advertising here is FREE!

We have already had success with this endeavor!

  • Fordom Unit - Great Condition - Has foot operated switch, etc…..$130.00
  • Basswood - Cut to Order - Also some Cherry and Butternut….Prices on request
  • Will furnish Bird Blanks from your plans or mine…..Prices on request depending on species.
For any information on the above items please contact Walt LeClair @ 518-861-6544.
***  Walt will be away from January 1st March 1st, so if you are in need of wood or blanks please call him before then. ***

Club Crew Neck Sweatshirt - size Medium - Never worn - wrong size ordered -
If interested please call Fred Jenzer @ 518-384-7313 or e-mail

Reliant Dust Collector - Model # NN720 - Paid $260.00 for it will take $130 - Runs on 110 or 220 volts.  Call Tony Monte @ 518-357-4602

  • Sears Craftsmen - 8" Bench Drill Press - $50.00
  • Sears Craftsmen - Tablesaw -10" with stand and dust sack plus an $82 blade all for $400.00
  • Sears Craftsmen - 10" Radial Arm Saw with stand - $400.00
  • 14" Bandsaw (Elephant) with stand and rip fence - $450.00
  • RBI 216V Scroll Saw with stand - $550.00, hardly used
  • Sears Belt Sander 6" x 48" and stand - $75.00
Only serious inquiries, please. Call Ray Alotta  479-3138 between the hours of 9 a.m. to 7 p.m. 

  • Alaskan Chain Saw Mill - used to convert logs to lumber- 36" w/accessories - very good condition                                                                         
  • McCulloh 20" Timber Bear Chain Saw w/ripping chain and w/extra chains - very good condition
Please call Steve Madej @ 518-842-7219 if you are interested in these items.

To place want ads for any wood carving related items please contact Carol Ayers by e-mail at " "
or by "snail mail" at
3 Poe Court
Ballston Spa, NY 12020
or by phone at

Program Report
By Dick Moran

The program for our January 8, 2002 meeting is: - Sharpening and Honing Carving Tools  which will be presented by Marcus Kruger & George Hallenbeck.  Marcus and George each plan to bring  of some of their respective equipment which they use in the sharpening and honing process.  In addition, the sharpening station which we keep at the Inman Center will also be used as part of the program.  They hope to set up two or three sharpening/honing stations at which carvers will have the opportunity to see small group demonstrations and ask relevant questions.  If you have a tool or two with which you are having difficulty sharpening (please, no more than one or two tools),  bring them to the meeting to see what can be done to rescue them.
Also, don't forget to bring any of your recent carvings for the "Show & Tell" portion of the meeting.

Feb. 5Everyone Carves Something night*. Everyone is asked to bring some woodcarving tools and whatever carving project he/she is currently working on. Suggestion: maybe completing unfinished items for donation to the show…nativity figures, auction items or door prize donations Also, members are asked to bring a recently completed carving to share with everyone during the "Show and Tell" portion of this informal program.

Mar. 5 - Carving A Woodspirit - Mike Bloomquist

Apr. 2Everyone Carves Something night*. Everyone is asked to bring some woodcarving tools and whatever carving project he/she is currently working on. Also, members are asked to bring a recently completed carving to share with everyone during the "Show and Tell" portion of this informal program.

May 7 - Some Aspect of Relief Carving – Robert Stadtlander.

June 4 - Sale & Swap Night – Carvers wishing to sell (or swap) carving equipment, tools or Carving Books are asked to bring them for display at their respective tables.  Also…Everyone Carves Something" night. Everyone is asked to bring some Woodcarving tools and whatever carving project he/she is currently working on. The "Show and Tell" portion of the program will be replaced by the "Sale & Swap Night" activities.

July 2 - Carving Corner Faces – Harold Kaltenbach

Aug. 6 - Everyone Carves Something night*. Everyone is asked to bring some woodcarving tools and whatever carving project he/she is currently working on. Also, members are asked to bring a recently completed carving to share with everyone during the "Show and Tell" portion of this informal program.

Sept. 3Birdcarving ??

Oct. 1Everyone Carves Something night*. Everyone is asked to bring some woodcarving tools and whatever carving project he/she is currently working on. Also, members are asked to bring a recently completed carving to share with everyone during the "Show and Tell" portion of this informal program.

Nov. 6Carving the Human Figure - Carl Borst

Dec. 4 - Christmas Party (potluck dinner). Bring your favorite Christmas carving for display. Slide Show of Club Activities - George Hallenbeck

*Programs and "Everyone Carves Something" sessions will normally last between 45 minutes and one-hour.

Hard to believe another year has passed already! It’s that time again! Your Club Dues are Due! Still a great bargain at $6 for single $10 for a family membership. Please Make checks payable to MVA&WC Association Send Dues to treasurer;
Don Painter
1397 Currybush Rd.
Schenectady, N.Y. 12306
Or pay him at the next meeting....

Thursdays at the Inman Center
By George Hallenbeck

I am a little behind on these as you can see by the dates but I hope to get caught up soon!

Thursday   Oct. 24th
       Chris Schmocker showing off his X-Mass carvings to Betty Dyksta, she's doing a similar carving to Chris's Adirondack panther (Black Bear with pack baskets and x-mas tree on his back)  "It's a good one" but with a name like Schmoker, "it's got to be good"!
        Betty Dykstra giving explicit instructions as to the carvings on her cane!  "I want to see what your going to do and where you're going to put it"!   Now we'll all be nervous cane carvers!
        Andrew Ebli doing a horse on a horseshoe in basswood. This shoe is not on the horse! But thats our Andy.
        Richard Vanderheuvel working on a sculptured frame relief of a bouquet of irises.  A great idea and a real nice carving.  Stop and smell the flowers!
        Armond Hebert working on a many tined Elk. Knowing Armond, he'll probably be pulling a wagon!
        Jim Bollbach here today to demonstrate Pumpkin Carving!  He's an expert!  Should teach a class!  Hear that Dick.  Jim's doing a 16" high pumpkin with the happiest, smiling face you’ve ever seen!
        Carl Borst carving a female Naval Cadet in full dress uniform, from a snapshot.  He--I mean She is a striking figure, standing at attention!  A very "Disciplined" carving.
        Good to see Dick Quay back after his new knee, carving a wise man for the nativity set.  He's getting ready for his other knee and I'll be going in for my first one!

        Keep Carving and give me something to write about...
Thursday, November 1st
       Jim Harvey doing another Viking!  It's not painted yet but he won't have a pink cape!  Maybe cerise underwear?
        John Page showing a two gun caballero!  Great guns, spurs and Sheriffs star.  Excellent detail!
        Ev Bottsford doing a witch by Proxy.  His pattern, my piece of wood and one of our noted carvers giving a lesson on witch carving.   You know who!  " I just can't stop"!
        Bill DiCaprio has a cane full of carvings and now he's doing x-mas Santas for all of us who carved on his cane! Just kidding Bill.  I know they're x-mas gifts for special people!
        My thanks to Richard Vanderheuvel .  I admired a holder for a carving vise that he made and his words were "I'll make you one"!  What a nice Gesture.  We have many generous people in our club and Richard is certainly a prime example. Thanks again Richard.

        Tomorrow is Knee day!  I go into St Peters Hospital for Knee replacement.  See you all..!
 Thurs. Nov. 29th     32 carvers in attendance
        Jim Bollbach, after his successful pumpkin carving showed his dried apple "heads". Three wonderfully expressive faces with great detail. The wrinkled features are really Delicious!
        Newcomer Larry Jasenski showing his prolific group of carvings including a dolphin in butternut, 2 small fish an owl and a cowboy boot. At least that's what he said they were! We wish him luck and all the help he can tolerate!  Welcome Larry.         Carol Ayers dropping her canes temporarily and now doing a flower motif on a small jewelry box. She's a Gem, our Carol!
        Martha Colinas working on a cane from a George Terwilliger blank. It's different and it's good. Faces swirls and who knows what? I know it will be a delight when finished.

It's 4 weeks since my operation and all is well! Walking great with no aids.  Thank you all for the cards, visitations and well wishes. You're a caring group and it sure helps! One down and one to go. Would you believe Betty Dykstra just handed me her cane to carve? No directions either!       

Club Apparel
By Carol Ayers

Since we have so many new members in our club I would like to explain what is available to our club members and how the ordering works. All of the items are embroidered with our club logo and the pricing is as follows:

  • Polo shirt, light ash gray (short sleeve with collar and tab front) is $11.00
  • Long sleeve T-shirt, light ash gray is $12.50
  • Crew neck sweatshirt, light ash gray is $16.50
  • Hooded, full zipper front sweatshirt with side pockets, light ash gray is $22.00
  • Apron, natural with no pocket is $8.50
  • Hat, tan is $7.70
  • Club embroidered patch is $3.50
    (sales tax is included in all the pricing)

Ordering these items is as follows:
Patches are on hand and can be bought from me at any time. Shirts, sweatshirts and aprons need a total of 6 orders, any combination. Hats need a total of 12 orders. When I receive enough orders, I will then request the money for your order and then place the order
with the company.  Orders usually take from 1 to 2 weeks to complete depending of the availability of the items.

It is great to have a hat, club shirt or logo apron or sweatshirt when doing the fairs or demos or shows.  I have just submitted another order for shirts, etc. and I am starting a new list and need a quantity of 6 for my next order.  I received a few more hat orders at the November meeting and the status stands at 4 hats ordered and 8 more needed for me to submit it to the vendor.

You can place an order by e-mailing me, Carol Ayers at:
or writing me at
3 Poe Court
Ballston Spa, NY 12020
or phoning me at
*** Watch For Something New! ***

We have had such a good response from our Want Ads addition to our newsletter that we are now expanding the idea to include a "WANTED" section.  So if you are looking for a certain knife, tool, book or pattern just give me, Carol Ayers, a call at 518-187-6841 or e-mail me at and I will put it in our newsletter.  Remember that our newsletter is on the internet and is mailed to other clubs. 
And remember, there is no charge for Want Ads or Wanted Ads and I will keep printing them in the newsletter until you let me know you have sold the item(s) or  have found what you need.

Letters to the Editor

Send correspondence to...
Mike Bloomquist
117 Riverview Parkway
Rome, N.Y. 13440

Or Email to;

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