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QotW: What are your beliefs about the time to reopen the economy and returning to Summer craft shows?


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Hi folks, once again not new question in the pool, so I will try once again to elicit some response. QotW: What are your beliefs about the time to reopen the economy and returning to Summer craft shows or should we wait until the Winter season? I am sure to have a mix of answers, but then it seems to be a political football, lets keep it civil and keep politics out of it>

My own perspective is biased, I will admit. I do pottery, taught pottery, love pottery, like selling and don't turn down most orders. However, I am retired, I'm now at the hill going into my 70's, I don't need the money as much as I need the feeling of being useful, productive and involved in something I love doing. For me, the lockdown has been difficult, not knowing where things are headed, uncertain about the risk of even grocery shopping or going out. I take a short drive with my wife just to get out of the house, no stops, just an old time drive. . . gas is cheap. I am filling orders for Communion sets, mixing glazes, popping popcorn, packing up and mailing. So much of what I am into is normal, but. . . . I haven't been bowling in over 3 weeks obviously. I walk around the house for steps, do my usual exercises, and go to the shop. Lots of reading, some xbox, some tv. Lots of cooking at home as we used to usually go out. I would love to be able to be out and about again, but I look at the death rates from day to day, the number of increasing cases and think it is not possible yet, and I hope that all is over by September when we have a cruise planned. Everything is up in the air, and I think I'm really lucky, retired, not teaching ceramics on line, or trying to keep my chin up if I were working at a large factory closed down for who knows. 

QotW: What are your beliefs about the time to reopen the economy and returning to Summer craft shows or should we wait until the Winter season? So what is your call?

 

best,

Pres

 

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I agree with you that its best to wait for longer. I am wary of a second wave and I see people out on walks not caring how close they get to others. When we walk, we try to cut cross country in parks to keep our distance. The snow is finally starting to let up here and we can get some fresh air now and its been therapeutic to walk as we have been in mourning for my mother's passing.

My husband is recovering from a heart attack from last fall and he still has problems and is high risk. I hope people can care enough to do the right thing and take it slowly and carefully to try to get back to normal - don't think I can handle two funerals this year.  and pray for a successful , rapid development  and deployment of a vaccine.

Edited by terrim8
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I have to agree with Pres and Terri.  We live in an area with almost no verified positive cases (3) however because of the lack of testing availability the actual number is probably much higher. (one clinic only has 6 tests)   Many of our local events are being canceled for the summer venues and personally I feel that is prudent.  Fall?  I can see they may come back but I don't know if I will participate in any way.  Winter?  we will just have to see!   Once testing is widespread I feel that businesses will be able to open their doors with some precautions.  But if you have options as a business person, to sell online, do deliveries, curbside, whatever that may be, at least you will be able to keep your doors open in the short term.  Very tough times and tough decisions to be made.  I suppose it will have to be a case by case decision made by individuals that are being impacted.  

Roberta

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My wife reads a lot of articles every day about Corona transmission since she's still working, and they're now finding more and more cases of people who are testing positive with no symptoms at all. For instance, 60% of the 600 sailors on the aircraft carrier that's been in the news that have tested positive have no symptoms. That means we really don't have a clue about infection rates. So until everyone can be tested for infection and antibodies, nothing should be opened up. If they don't do it that way we'll just have another wave of infection and fill up the hospitals again.

Here in Illinois, we're adding over 1,000 cases a day, partly do to the fact that we're now testing over 7,000 people every day and that number is increasing. But as long as those infection rates stay high or keep increasing, we're in lockdown. The numbers need to get low and stay low for at least two weeks before we can open up, and everyone needs to get tested. So I know our lockdown will extend well into May, if not June. I don't expect the kids to go back to school. Once I'm able to open my shop back up, I expect we'll be wearing masks in the studio, especially since I have a fair number of seniors in my classes. I  don't think there should be any art fairs or large public gatherings of any sort until August at the very earliest at this point, but I have a feeling that some of the July shows will still happen because people are hungry for money. I'll be wearing a mask if I do any shows this year, which will be really unpleasant in the warmer months.

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I was reading an article this morning on how the curve is being flattened in Canada, but there’s no talk of relaxing anything yet because we aren’t past the peak. The idea wasn’t that the general population needs to be protected from it, but many vulnerable populations do so that deaths are minimized and the hospitals aren’t overwhelmed and they can’t provide proper care.  The whole stay home thing is supposed to be a look after your neighbour situation. 


The farmer’s market that accounts for most of my Q3 income is opening as planned in late May, but only to food/alcohol/live plant vendors, who are considered essential services right now. Booths will have 2 meters (6.5’) in between each other,  foot traffic will be one way only and 6’ social distancing lineup markers will be enforced.  Sampling is prohibited, and the hand washing station plans are kind of impressive. They may add some of us non-food types in at a later time, but that’s very up in the air. Everyone I know who makes fabric anything is making face masks, so there’s the next fashion trend. I bought two from a friend, and they’re pretty, but I feel like I’m knocking over a Sev going into the grocery store wearing one. 
 

Honestly I think with how fast everything changes, making predictions for 6 months from now is difficult. There’s not enough information, and a whole lot of guesswork because it’s all new.  I’m going to proceed as though the sales will happen, because if I don’t, I won’t have enough stock. If sales go ahead, they’ll have more rules on them about spacing, which will affect venue capacities. If sales don’t go ahead, then the online gets pushed, and we band together in our local entrepreneurial groups, and do things together. There’s one market organizers go, after their event got cancelled, decided to put together Mother’s Day gift baskets filled with things from the vendors they chose. They’ll be delivering or shipping them as needed. 
 

I think that whatever happens this Christmas, it’s not going to look like last year. Maybe there will be more advanced order and pickup situations, there will probably be crowd calming measures in place, and maybe longer hours to compensate for reduced occupancies. There are solutions to be had.

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My grandaughter enters Pitt for her Freshman year. . . on line! Classes will resume in January. I would imagine there are going to be a lot of gimme's here.  The class of 2020 may never graduate, she is first or second in her class, just got a scholarship, Harriet Tubman award. No awards ceremony. There is a rumor graduation and such will be held in August here in PA. This is really a game changer, where will we end up going forward. Will we learn anything from this?

 

 

best,

Pres

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I live in a small rural county with about 110,000 pop. We have 51 cases with 3 in hospital 43 of those cases are from contact from international travel and or travelers.

The rest are contact spread in community. Testing is just barley scratched the surface so nobody knows whats really going on. I think this is the case almost everywhere (yes that aircraft carrier and Iceland got to test everyone) so thats a good sample to see whats going on.

So many unknowns -until testing is really widespread its all just a guess really-its testing that will get us back to some sort of norm.Without testing we will be in limbo forever.

At 67 myself I do not want to immerse into a large crowd  at this time for obvious reasons. The data is just not there yet to say when is good  time to get back to shows.

I'm doubt our state will allow it for a long time (gatherings which shows are really) Our governor has been ahead on the curve in terms closeures of a lot of  states (I was told on the 15th of March to stay home)-schools are out for the year and our local JC and local state collage are going into predicted severe financial times for next two years-a 20 million dollar setback for just the state collage alone . 

I'm fine with the no art fairs on the financial side for this year. I like the living longer side of life anyway. I will add that the galleries will most likey reopen again by summer on a limited customer in and out basis or maybe in the fall. As I have written about before I have 3 streams of ceramic income and behold in this crisis I still have one left-the super markets and am still taking in wares early am during senior hours weekly as things are slower but still moving along.

This will be a huge financial depression -no way out of that reality. just look at China's GPD realeased this week.

I miss the art shows (there is a zoom meeting of us vendors at a canceled fair this weekend in lieu of the show)

I believe our state and the other two (Oregon and Washington) in the coalition together will slowly get the testing thing together (not the Feds) and move forward with a solid plan on a slow reopening.Califonia has a huge rainy day surplus that Govenor Brown got together the past 8 years. its at a all time high so we have the $$ to spend to get the testing and PPE stuff  to get it going. This state is the 5th largest in the world economy (nation state) and has the resources and talent to ghet thru this.(ok I'm a native son)

I said on another thread I thought shows would not happen this year and am sticking by that until some more movement with testing appears and we all feel we are getting a handle on it. I do not yet see this anywhere except on an aircraft carrier in Guam and Iceland (we had to cancel our June Iceland trip a few weeks back)At this time all gatherings(shows sports whatever) seem a long ways off.Next year maybe

All this said I need to have enough stock to handle a big show if it happens (and I choose to go-doubtfull at this time)and still think they might happen also doubtful.I have paid up on all but one event for the year now anyway. I still need stock for my wholesale orders (still an unknown) and still need stock for my wholesale super market sales that are on going and still have stock for my consignment galleries when they reopen (still an unknown)-that all adds up to make and stockpile pots.  They unlike bread do not go bad and having way to many pots sounds about righ right now.Its like my own stimulus pile of potterty for when things get better. Also its like later I can play more as well so really its a win win to make them now.

Edited by Mark C.
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My best thought sooner than later. More testing is great but get tested today and catch it thirty minutes later so not the cure and can create false security. The raw problem, it’s highly contagious. I have high hope in treatments which I believe will be key until a vaccine so I would hope the economy ramps  up albeit, slowly and differently over the next two months. Masks, social distance, self awareness hopefully will take hold for the next 12 months but provide some level of normalcy. Stay safe as you can, most folks seem to be pretty understanding and flexible.

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Having worked in allied health, peripheral to public health, for state government, for many decades in two states, I know way too much about the disregard and misunderstandings of how to interpret and apply  valid data for populations.  Collecting and analyzing the best valid data and massive testing needed. It is more about trends and regional containment strategies than about single positives/negatives of us as individuals.  I ain't budging until Sir Fauci tells me it's worth taking a chance. And then I'll wait a few weeks after that to see what's happening out there! 

Edited by LeeU
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I listened to a Hidden Brain podcast about the 1918 flu.  The historian that was interviewed was Nancy Bristow.  Quite interesting.  One of the important pieces of info about that virus was that they did "socially distance" for a time, and then as the virus appeared to recede, the businesses and public places opened up again.  Bringing about another wave of illness.  Evidently there were 3 waves of the virus..... that's why it makes so much sense to me, to keep things closed as much as possible until there is widespread testing and vaccines on the horizon.  so, to tie in with the topic, if there are holiday shows,  putting distance between vendors, wearing masks, having hand sanitizer available,  will all be realistic expectations.   

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I'm thinking that it would be wise to plan for a year without shows. Maybe next summer. 

In the meantime, online shopping appeals to many customers, possibly potters can create online co-ops to get away from etsy distractions. 

Also, in the short term, consider marketing hand sanitizer bottles - if you know a sewist, see about selling masks and bottles together. 

Right now, Nurseries are open (because they sell food plants) so think about placing wares there - vases, planters, wall art, garden themed mugs and platters.

Stay safe.

 

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More thoughts: lots of pickling and canning going on these days. If you have room to make large vats and crocks, there's a market. I have an old, cast peanut butter crock and it's clear that it was glaze fired upside down on its unglazed rim, leaving glaze on the gallery. Sets could be fired nested upside down.

And growlers for the home brewers.

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3 hours ago, Rae Reich said:

More thoughts: lots of pickling and canning going on these days. If you have room to make large vats and crocks, there's a market. I have an old, cast peanut butter crock and it's clear that it was glaze fired upside down on its unglazed rim, leaving glaze on the gallery. Sets could be fired nested upside down.

And growlers for the home brewers.

Sauerkraut pots are another interesting pot to make.

Was a time when I made terracotta markers for herb and veg. rows .

"Houses" to trap snails in.

Toadstools and mushrooms to stick into planters to indicate moisture in soil. 

Thinking garden centres.

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7 hours ago, Rae Reich said:

More thoughts: lots of pickling and canning going on these days. If you have room to make large vats and crocks, there's a market. I have an old, cast peanut butter crock and it's clear that it was glaze fired upside down on its unglazed rim, leaving glaze on the gallery. Sets could be fired nested upside down.

And growlers for the home brewers.

I spent yesterday making 64 and 128 ounce growlers.

I am modelling them off of old STP brake fluid cans and will be stenciling them as such.  Fun little coronavirus project.  

My next round will have swingtop lids, but for now they'll be corked.

These are part of a series of videos on markets doing well during coronavirus.  Beer, cannabis and coffee are our local industries which have boomed since quarantine started.

86F8t0g.jpgtmX3lyq.jpgJvQzwMc.jpg

Edited by liambesaw
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Love those @liambesaw !

 

My first thought was, that they looked industrial/ like something automotive related. 

In regards to the topic question, I think it is best to err on the side of caution.  Like many have pointed out, we don't know the actual numbers, due to the lack of testing. 

I live in a relatively rural State, and in a very tiny town, yet we still have cases.  My Father, initially thought this whole thing was overblown, and now the County he lives in, has one of the highest case numbers in the State. 

As a teacher, the repercussions are just tragic, especially for the Seniors, the retiring teachers, those in activities and athletics, and worst of all, those "At Risk" students who depend on School for structure and a sense of normalcy. 

My District is currently only doing "Voluntary Learning".   We provide optional resources for students, and don't have to make up the days.  We may yet go to "Required Learning", at least for High School, but that will obviously present even more obstacles.  My Three-Dimensional class, was half way through a project, with at least two left.  That class is mostly clay work, so obviously it will be difficult to give them the same experience, at home. 

I don't think a lot of it has set in yet.  I'm just kind of numb to it all, as this is indeed unprecedented.

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26 minutes ago, liambesaw said:

Screw on top!? Now that would be something


years ago on clayart David Hendley wrote about his jars with ceramic screw-on lids aka “Homemade Dies”.  Look it up on his website: http://farmpots.com/ 

not as hard (or easy) to do as one might think.  

LT
 

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Funny thing about that video Min is those are some crystalline  potters I'm friends with. He just stopped by our place a few months ago and I bought a large bulk buy of heavy duty metal lotion tops from him.I seem to do this about evey few years from them. They have a second home up the coast from me that they are outfitting for another second pottery studio . They have stopped by a few times. We do a few of the same shows  and have helped each other out over the years .Good folks.They are full timers like me and do only crystalline work. Look for them at Anacortes when the next one happens whenever that may be.

PS the lotion pumps I make are screw on tops-the clay is threaded in a mold similar to the video but a bit different as the top is made ina press mold and added to pump jar when firm

Edited by Mark C.
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  • Pres unpinned this topic

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