asparagus valley

The Asparagus Valley Pottery Trail is hosting their 18th annual studio tour both as an online sale and an in-person event. For our pottery fans near and far that prefer to shop from home, we will launch an online opening Friday, April 29 at Noon ET via our website www.apotterytrail.com. Join us in-person April 30 and May 1, between 10-5, to explore the self-guided studio tour while also taking in the rich cultural life, scenic drives, and culinary delights that western Massachusetts has to offer.

The Trail, named for a fertile stretch of the Connecticut River valley and its world-famous crop, welcomes visitors and clay enthusiasts from throughout New England and across the country in late April to visit the creative spaces of the area’s close-knit community of potters. Pottery will be available for sale in a wide range of wheel-thrown and hand-built ceramics for tabletop, home, and garden. Visitors will also have the opportunity to talk with the artists about their work, technique and inspiration. This year will include 23 potters at 8 studio locations with guest artists joining us from Maine, Vermont and New York. For 2022 there are a few changes that include three new studio locations. Visit the website for locations and details. Molly Cantor is hosting at her home studio in Shelburne Falls. Steve Théberge is hosting at his home studio in Florence; and Tiffany Hilton is in a new location within the Arts & Industry Building in Florence.

“The pandemic has heightened our need for human connection, as well as our appreciation for the objects we choose to live with in our homes. Beautiful, functional objects and a connection to those who make them are what the Pottery Trail is all about,” said potter Tiffany Hilton, who had been one of the hosts on the tour for seventeen years.

Easily accessible from Boston, Hartford, and the Albany area, the self-guided Pottery Trail winds along scenic byways and through college towns and historic villages of Western Massachusetts. Look for distinctive yellow Trail signs guiding visitors to studios clustered in three areas: Northampton/Hadley, Greenfield, and the Mohawk Trail village of Shelburne Falls.

Pick up a Pottery Trail Passport at your first location. Those who have their Trail Passport stamped at all 8 studios will be entered to win a mug or cup. Twenty three prizes will be awarded.

The Pottery Trail will follow all state and local mandates regarding covid at the time of our event. Please check our website for future announcements as the Trail draws near.

The 2022 Asparagus Valley Pottery Trail is sponsored in part by Northeast Solar, Greenfield Cooperative Bank, The Handle Factory, and The People’s Pint. Look for our limited release of Pottery Trail Pale Ale from The People’s Pint in cans and on tap in April.

Potters on the 2022 Tour:

Donna McGee, Hadley

Donna continues to make pots and tiles and savors each item, moving forward with new materials, surface treatment, and themes. Her drawings of fields, flowers and faces are a signature of her work. Guests: Ben Eberle of Conway, MA  and Megan Hart of Conway, MA .

Tiffany HiltonTiffany Hilton, Florence

Tiffany will be proudly hosting at her new studio location (within the same old building) in Florence, MA. Tiffany will be showing her dinnerware, serving pieces, planters, bowls, mugs and more. She specializes in custom dinnerware and wedding gift registries, keeping to durable glazes and minimal surface decoration. Guests: Rie McCarthy of Mt Washington, MA and Colleen McCall of Elmira, NY.

James Guggina, Florence

James makes porcelain and stoneware dinnerware complimented with intricate patterns. He uses multiple firing methods to explore the many surfaces and glaze results he desires. Guests: Gabrielle Schaffner of Boston, MA , Doug Peltzman of Shokan, NY, and Francine Ozereko of Pelham, MA

Steve Théberge, Florence

Working with stoneware and a few slips and glazes, Steve’s work is intended for daily use on the table or altar. He explores reduction cooling in his gas fired kiln to achieve rich surfaces with minimal elements such as iron and ash. Steve is our newest host and a welcome addition to the tour this year. Guest: Maggie Boyd of Brooklyn, NY

LucyFagellaWorkingPF04052019Lucy Fagella, Greenfield

Lucy shows her love of food and gardening in her pottery for the kitchen and table. She also produces a distinctive line of funerary ware, including biodegradable urns. A deep exploration into various glaze techniques has resulted in new surfaces and patterns that she is excited to share with you. Guests: Cara Taylor, of Northampton, MA; and Noel Bailey of Waitsfield, VT.

Molly Cantor, Shelburne Falls

Molly's functional pottery features block-print-like carved designs inspired by an ever-evolving array of regional plants, animals, and stories. As committed to her community as to her craft, Molly recently opened The Handle Factory community clay center. Molly is hosting at her new home studio this year just down the road. Guest: Laurel MacDuffie of Parsonsfield, ME 

Mary Barringer, Shelburne Falls

Mary makes hand-built pottery and sculpture with distinctive textured surfaces reminiscent of stones or ancient implements. She will be showing functional platters, bowls, and cups, as well as sculpture for the wall and garden. Guests: Aysha Peltz of Halifax, VT ; and Lisa Orr of Northborough, MA 

Stephen Earp, Shelburne Falls

Steve finds inspiration in historical styles such as traditional New England redware and early blue and white delftware. He is the recent recipient of the Massachusetts Cultural Council 2022 Traditional Arts Fellowship Award. Guests: Tom White of Northfield, MA ; and Sam Taylor of Westhampton, MA 

"My husband is a motorcycle enthusiast and likes riding the Mohawk Trail"
"The county is peppered with old and new all mixed up"
"An air of peace and tranquility"
"Real community authenticity. Franklin County is not pseudo anything."
"More down to earth, no pretense, real people."
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