Carvers roll into town for Rendezvous

Photo by Becky Polaski - Downtown Ridgway was a busy place on Thursday as the 19th annual Chainsaw Carvers Rendezvous kicked off. The Rendezvous continues today and tomorrow, with events on both days running from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m.
Jake Perryman
Staff Writer

The 2018 Ridgway Chainsaw Carvers Rendezvous got off to a sunny start Thursday as clear skies and warm temperatures dominated the day.
The event – which runs through Saturday under a new, three-day format this year – drew a steady stream of visitors, with dozens of people wandering Ridgway's downtown in the area of the Elk County Courthouse at any given time to see carvers and accompanying vendors.
“I think it's going well. I'm happy,” Organizer Liz Boni said. “They can actually talk to the carvers now.”
In contrast to previous years, carvers weren't actively working at their respective spots. In fact, the area seemed decidedly quiet compared to previous years. The buzz of saws was largely replaced with the more familiar murmur of a crowd generally heard at festivals.
That doesn't mean there wasn't carving. Pieces were being created on-site at the corner of Court and Main streets.
According to carver Paul Waclo, that wasn't a bad thing.
“I can talk to my customers and there's not the din of the chainsaws,” he said. “I think the biggest benefit is to the customers. They can talk to the carvers and have that interaction. That I think is a great benefit. Conversations are being had.”