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Cobblestone Museum gets year started early with several events before opening day

By Tom Rivers, Editor Posted 1 February 2018 at 10:38 am

Photo by Tom Rivers: Robin Stelmach is pictured inside Americana Unlimited Antiques, his business at the corner of Ridge Road and Route 279 in Gaines. Stelmach will be doing an antiques appraisal fair on Feb. 10 at Tillman’s Village Inn as a benefit for the Cobblestone Society.

GAINES – The Cobblestone Museum has several events planned before the museum opens for the season on June 1.

Last year the museum debuted an appraisal fair at Tillman’s Village Inn, with local antique appraisers Robin Stelmach from American Unlimited Antiques and Mark Christopher from Dream Speaker Antiques.

That event drew a crowd and it is back on Feb. 10, with Stelmach and Christopher once again offering their expertise.

The museum also had a “sports widows” program through December. The events are part of an effort to extend the museum’s season, looking at alternative locations with more parking and heated buildings, said Doug Farley, the museum director.

“We needed to be resourceful to find other locations,” he said.

The Village Inn will host the antiques appraisal fair from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Stelmach and Christopher will appraise family heirlooms, paintings, furniture or “whatever item has been hiding out in your spare closet,” Farley said.

Next month, the museum will lead a tour to maple farms with a stop at Merle’s Maple Farm in Attica and Cartwright’s Maple Tree Inn in Angelica. That bus tour on March 23 will be led by Georgia Thomas of Medina.

She was the demonstration cook for maple products at NY State Fair in the Wegman’s Kitchen for a decade. She started cooking with maple in the NY State Maple Producer’s Booth at the State Fair at the request of Fly Way Farm in Medina and then moved to the Wegman’s Kitchen and began to create and adapt recipes for maple.

Thomas and the tour stops will highlight different ways to use maple syrup, and also touch on its history and lore.

Farley expects the maple tour will be popular.

“Everybody likes to eat and most everyone likes maple syrup,” he said. “At the museum we focus on the historic trades. Maple syrup was a big part of farming locally.”

Provided photo: Patricia Greene will lead a series of painting workshops at the Cobblestone Museum starting next month.

The museum also is planning a first-time membership dinner at the Carlton Rec Hall on April 25, beginning at 5:30 p.m. There will be dinner catered by chef Michael Zambito of Zambistro in Medina. There will also be a silent auction, theme baskets and other raffles.

Falrey said the museum wants to attract more members, including bigger donors to ensure the long-term sustainability of the Cobblestone Museum, which is a National Historic Landmark.

“It’s probably our principal fundraiser,” Farley said. “It will be a fun evening with lots to think about and eat.”

The event is headed by Gail Johnson, who helped Ducks Unlimited plan many of its successful fundraisers.

The museum will be hosting a series that begins next month. Patricia Greene, a Medina artist, will be leading “Sunday Painters” art classes beginning on March 4. There will be four workshops, with the classes on march 4, April 8, May 6 and June 3.

The classes are designed to build sequential continuity as students move through the workshops, but students can join at any point in the journey or pick and choose as they see fit.

Each student will complete a painting to take home at the end of each lesson. An art show of student art with free public admission will be mounted at the museum throughout 2018.

Farley said the museum’s programs will help people fight the “winter blahs.”

“We figured people are pretty much ready to get out and do something,” he said.

For more on the museum and its programs, click here.

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