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Blenko to host annual celebration

Jun. 19, 2013 @ 09:23 AM

MILTON -- Blenko Glass Co. is having its annual West Virginia Birthday Celebration on Saturday, June 22. The Visitor Center will open at 8 a.m. for this special event, where Blenko will sell its 33rd West Virginia Birthday piece.

Made of ice blue-colored glass to represent a mountaineer's freedom, the 11-inch tall, ballooning vase expands with hearts from a narrow base to broad rounded shoulders and a flared rim. The piece is limited to a quantity of 150 and will be sold for $160, plus tax.

Each piece is hand-signed by the designer, Arlon Bayliss, and Blenko President Walter Blenko Jr. It is limited to one per customer on a first-come, first-served basis, and there will be no advance or telephone orders taken.

All customers will receive a free commemorative W.Va. Day Collectors Medallion (while supplies last). West Virginia Birthday cake and refreshments will be served. Blenko will be available to sign additional purchases, and Bayliss will be available to speak with customers.

Preceding the sale, Blenko Glass Co. is hosting "Happy After Hours with Blenko Glass," beginning at 7 p.m. Friday, June 21. Two special edition pieces will be available for purchase, and a there will be a 15 percent discount off all purchases. Blenko and Bayliss will sign glass, and cupcakes and refreshments will be served.

Seeking Blenko history

The Blenko Project, www.blenkoproject.org, is a non­profit group that focuses on archiving Blenko Glass and preserving the history of Blenko Glass, the craftsmen and the designers.

It was founded by Dr. Hillary Homburg, a Charleston den­tist, in 2006. Homburg main­tains a popular blog at http://herald-dispatchblogs04.blogspot.com/.

The Blenko Project is cur­rently seeking photos of Blenko and collecting oral histories from glass workers and their fami­lies. If you own a collector or unique piece of Blenko Glass, If your family member worked at Blenko and you would like to assist with information about his employment, or you need more information, please email The-BlenkoProject@aol.com.

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