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Media Kit

Image by Sean Stratton

Bounded by the Cowee, Nantahala, Blue Ridge and Great Smoky Mountains, the Cowee Valley is tucked within the boundaries of the Little Tennessee River Valley.  Just 5 miles north of Franklin, North Carolina, off of NC 28 North, a more beautiful setting for a pottery festival is hard to imagine.

Event Details

The Cowee Valley Pottery Festival will host some 22 very diverse, juried potters at the Cowee School Arts & Heritage Center on May 23 from 10A-4P.  Included in the event are raku firing demonstrations, wheel demonstrations, hourly exhibitor donated raffle item announcements, plus two preview events.  Cost of admission to the Festival is $5. 


The first preview event will be hosted by the Franklin’s Lazy Hiker Brewery, who will unveil a new brew named for the Pottery School on April 3.  On the same day, the Pottery School will host a Mug and Brew event at the Lazy Hiker facility and teach brewery patrons how to make coffee mugs, or if they choose, beer mugs.  Cost of admission to the Brew and Mugs event is $45 and will take place at the brewery. 


On Friday evening, May 22, the Pottery School is hosting a mocktail & canapé event to Meet the Artists and give guests an opportunity to bid on some of the artists’ finest works.  The cost of admission to this event is $15.  Please click here to see the participating artists and their work.

School Background

A group of friends and fellow potters gathered together in 2013 to organize the Cowee Pottery School in the newly created Heritage Center,  The old Cowee School, abandoned for new facilities, offered space in a World War II era for artists and community. The Pottery School incorporated and obtained non-profit status as an educational entity in 2014.  With a small grant of $300 from the Heritage Center, to purchase a supply of clay, and tables built by the founders, classes began. Regular pottery class schedules have been maintained and taught by volunteer instructors, board members, and founders of the Pottery School.

School Management

The Pottery School is managed by a seven member board of directors and a part-time school director.

  • Laura Brooks.  The school director has an education in graphic arts and community planning.  Her work background is in creative management and she sits on the planning team for the Cowee Valley Pottery Festival.

  • Charlotte Weingartner.  The president of the board is a clinical Phd in physical therapy, an accomplished pottery student, the chief cheer leader to create the Cowee Valley Pottery Festival, and a member of the Festival planning team.

  • Shalimar Anderson.  The vice president is employed by Moodle (a software designed for educational access) as a (?), is a volunteer pottery instructor, and member of the Festival planning team.

  • Hank Shuler.  The treasurer is a retired C.P.A., an educator who created a successful pottery program for the local community college, a founder of the Pottery School, former president of an organization that created the Little Tennessee River Greenway (among other volunteer activities), a volunteer instructor for the Pottery School, a potter, and the team leader for the Festival planning team.

  • Karen Smith.  The secretary is a counselor, an on-line continuing education instructor for counselors, a painter, a potter, and the coordinator of the Pottery School’s Master Potter Series.

  • Doug Hubbs.  Board member, founding member of the Pottery School, accomplished potter, volunteer instructor, and member of Festival planning team

  • Jodi Casada.  Board member, IT Specialist, volunteer instructor, and member of Festival planning team

  • Maria Green.  Past president, past board member, founding member of the Pottery School, current volunteer instructor, and member of the Festival planning team. She is a gerontologist and consultant on aging and adult services.

  • Linda Harbuck, Franklin Area Chamber of Commerce Director, experienced director of many large evens,  and member of Festival planning team

  • Joe Frank McKee, extraordinary potter, chairman of the highly successful WNC Pottery Festival, and member of our Festival planning team.



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