Inside the Newsroom

News, commentary, insight on local happenings and fun from the staff of The Saline Reporter and Milan News-Leader.

Sunday, September 30, 2007

Harvest of the Arts, Farm Fun Times

Saline was buzzing with activity Saturday with the Harvest of the Arts Festival and Harvest Time on the Rentschler Farm. Well, maybe "buzzing" isn't the exact word for the arts festival. North Ann Arbor Street, rather, was ablaze. A fire broke out in the food court as culinary arts students were cooking on a hot plate. I was there videoing the announcement of who won best of show in the arts component of the festival. All of the sudden, the announcer said there was a fire and asked someone in the crowd to call 911. I turned and saw flames shooting up, and a tent top with a huge burn hole in it. The Saline Area Fire Department was called in. We have video on our Web site and below. It appeared there were no injuries, but we will follow up on the story. I tried calling the fire department yesterday, but only got voicemail.


The Two Twelve Arts Center ran an Imagination Station on South Ann Arbor Street. Director Margie Bovee took photos, like the one above of Fin Seely, 8, of Ann Arbor. Fin and Margie are pictured with Hannah Hotchkiss. In addition, Terri Sibo was teaching arts activities to Mackenzie Hagood, 8, of Saline, as well as Patrick and Molly Collins of Saline, and other children. Robin Sibo, 8, was practicing French knitting.

The artists' booth lining South Ann Arbor Street were full of beautiful and interesting work. I spoke to Carol Lynn of Saline, who makes fire paintings. I had never heard of that process before. Check out our Harvest of the Arts video to hear her explain it. In addition, she's holding an open house 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Dec. 1 at 10450 Timber Ridge Trail. For directions, check out her Web site at

I also interviewed Andi Klott of Milan. She makes the cutest knit baby hats. Unfortunately, the video file became corrupted and wouldn't download on my computer. I feel badly as she took the time to talk to me and show her wares. Anyone in the market for adorable hand-knit hats and mittens for kids should e-mail her at

Down Michigan Avenue, I came across Harvest Time at the Rentschler Farm, where I found Linda Klenczar, a student at Two Twelve Arts Center, painting a picture of the Rentschler barn. The farm was sold to the city about 10 years ago and the Saline Area Historical Society oversees it, providing tours and holding special events, such as Harvest Time on the Farm. Inside the farmhouse, Lisa Rentschler was showing visitors the sitting room, Sue Roche showed the parlor, Lee Casper talked about the dining room, and Heidi Roberts and Bob Mottice were giving demonstrations of old-fashioned sausage-making in the kitchen.

Outside Dallas Casey, 4, of Saline joined other children on an old-fashioned ride, while Eisuke Suzki, 21 months, of Ann Arbor admired pumpkins. Sullivan Brow, 9, of Saline painted a pumpkin,
and Katie Fedoronko, 9, of Saline admired Alisha and Lynn Finkbeiner's bunny. The Finkbeiners are volunteers with the Saline Area Historical Society and got hooked up with the organization after the historical society bought one of Alisha's 4-H lambs.

The highlight of the visit to the farm was a special awards presentation honoring Taylor and Charlene Jacobsen for their work in restoring the Saline Mill in Saline Township. Nancy Snyder of the Washtenaw County Historic District Commission presented a plaque to the couple. Among the speakers was Tom Bennett, chairman of the York Township Historic Committee, who nominated the Jacobsens. You can view video of the presentation on our Web site.

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