Clay Fest Steering Committee
January 4, 2022
Present: Ziggy Blum, Debbie Christensen, Dawn Craig, Nina Fernström Duong, Tea Duong,
Ted Ernst, Shelly Fredenberg, Frank Gosar, Nicole Hummel, Beth Johnson, Tracie Manso,
Michael McKinney, Merry Newcomer, Chris Polich, Faith Rahill, Robin Russell, Sandy Segna,
Karen Washburn, Laura Wikane, Mariah Williams
• Faith moved and Merry seconded to approve minutes. Motion carried.
• Karen asked Frank about how Holiday Market went. Market required all sellers to have proof
of vaccination or else a recent (72 hours) negative COVID test for each sale period. Customers
were required to be masked, but not vaccinated, and security was hired to patrol and enforce.
Compliance was good, 90-95% (depending on whether you count noses out). Nether Robin
nor Frank was aware of any vendors contracting COVID, though Merry knows of two.
• With this in mind, Karen asks if we want to go ahead as though we can have a show? Ziggy
says yes, and there is general agreement from everyone present. The question is what kind of
show we want; all planning depends on that.
• Robin wants to ditch the central check-out. Ziggy agrees that long check-out lines are
hazardous. Karen asks if individual members could be signed in to Clay Fest’s Square
account. Frank says it’s a security hazard, too much possibility of mistakes if not active malice.
Karen wonders how much we need to bring in to cover cost of the show? Robin says the show
would be much cheaper without central check-out, and sales probably better if people
remained in their booths. Anyone with a smart phone has the capacity to take their own credit
sales with Square, Intuit or other system. We would need to trust people to pay their
commission accurately; Saturday Market uses the honor system and manages fine. Taking
away central check-out also removes the need for tags, bookkeeping, processing member
checks and W2’s, all difficult and time-consuming tasks.
• We probably would need to cancel special events: Kids Clay, Gallery, Demo. This would free
up some chairs to take on other responsibilities. She hasn’t heard from a number of chairs—
publicity, secretary. Merry was able to finally access our website, but can’t pass on the
responsibility, as dual factor authentication requires her to send a link from her cell phone.
She’s willing to continue maintaining the current site, but doesn’t have time to move content to
a new platform.
• Tracie asks about work shifts during the show? Most of them would be gone; security would
only be needed during set-up and take-down. Ziggy suggests having one location—probably
the Information table—that could also take credit/debit payments in an emergency. This would
require staffing during the show, perhaps members with partners to cover their booths?
• Sandy asks what about breaks? Frank says some shows offer booth sitters, but generally,
ask a neighbor to cover for you. He also attended a show where booths were unbearably hot,
and vendors left a notice with their cell phone number to call for assistance and went to sit in
the shade. Robin just puts a “Back in 10 minutes” sign out. People manage.
• Will we have pipe-and-drape? It makes it easier to hang lights and install electric drops to
booths. We aren’t sure the company is still going after a two-year hiatus. Faith will find out.
Clayfolk doesn’t provide pipe-and-drape, nor does Holiday Market, and both shows still look
• Local Clay dues: Robin has sent out a notice to 2019 members list, directing people to renew
online. She’ll also ask Allan Kluber to send out a notice, and would like Merry to remove the
Application Form from the website in favor of a link to the renewal site.
• Debbie would like us to do the Clay Fest application as an online form. It would streamline
data entry substantially. Robin thinks it could be done using Google Forms.
• Karen wonders whether 5x10 booths would have room to sell and wrap as well as display
their work. Perhaps we need neighborhood wrap stations? Tracie wonders whether we could
have space for wrap stations between or behind booths. Sandy wonders whether wrap stations
could be self-service for customers to use after they’ve made their purchases. Laura wonders
if we even want to keep 5x10 booths. Maybe should all go to 10x10.
• Debbie and Shelly would both like to keep the gallery; Shelly calls it “the heart of Clay Fest.”
She suggest signage asking people to contact artists in their booths—numbers on the name
cards—to arrange purchase of a gallery piece. She also thinks replacing hands-on Kids Clay
with grab-n-go kits, with clay, cardboard work surface, chopstick or popsicle stick tools and
instructions on drying and firing pieces.
• Frank thinks the changes—individual sales for safety, changes to Kids Clay and Gallery—
might even be an advantage for publicity, giving media a new hook to hang what had been a
“same-old-story.” “Novelty is exciting,” adds Shelly.
• Chris asks whether the show should be outdoors? Or at least have an outdoor option for
overflow. Tracie points out that there will be more space without checkout or Demo. Robin
notes that the Fairgrounds has improved air flow in the Exhibit and Performance Halls, but isn’t
sure about the Auditorium. Karen points out that without central check-out or bookkeeping/
cash counting, there’s less reason to keep doors closed, and in fact we could have them all
open if we wish.
• We don’t know whether there will be a Home Show or not, or how that may affect turn-out.
• Karen would like a small group to meet in person to consider the show lay-out. She’d like a
couple of plans, including a worst-case map in the event that cases blow up again. She’ll meet
with Chris (Building chair), Frank (who does the Map), Robin (Treasurer) and Laura (Chair
trainee). Anyone with ideas to share should email her. We’ll need something to present at the
February meeting, which is traditionally when we create our budget. We need to know the
minimum number of booths to cover rent, insurance, and other necessities. (Frank says at
some of the postcard/poster/advertising should also be considered.)
Next meeting: Tuesday, February 1, 2022, 6:30 pm.