Penn State Brandywine will play host to the 29th Annual William Rush Woodcarving and Wildlife Art Show and Sale on Saturday, Nov. 3 from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. and Sunday, Nov. 4 from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.
The event, which will be held in the Commons Building gymnasium, will feature hand-carved birds, animals, marine life, wildlife art and more for sale, all created by skilled artists. Door prizes will be awarded every hour; books, tools and supplies will be offered for sale and carving demonstrations will be held. The price of admission is a $4 donation benefiting the Penn State Brandywine Scholarship Fund. Children aged 12 and under are free with an adult.
Each year the chapter names a William Rush Carver of the Year. This year's winner is Rich McCall, whose interest in woodcarving was sparked by the colorful wood caricature carver Elmer Jumper in 1980. McCall joined the Delaware County Woodcarvers Association and learned skills from many experienced carvers. To improve on these techniques he has attended many classes and seminars to hone his skills carving songbirds, shore birds, birds of prey with habitats and mountings.
McCall's interest in the sea and ship figureheads piqued while vacationing in Mystic Seaport, Conn., and he has gathered information from original carvings. He has produced many fine carvings consisting of seamen, sailors and harpooners, and he is interested in Civil War and Confederate soldier woodcarvings.
McCall has also carved many intricate carvings for holidays, which include Santa Claus (modern and old), monks, elves and other popular themes.
He teaches classes for the William Rush Carving Association at the Brandywine campus and has taught classes at Strath Haven High School.
From McCall's early beginnings in woodcarving he has disciplined himself to select a project and forge ahead to completion. In his teaching discipline his goal for his students is to attain project completion. Even after the class is completed, McCall works with his students to reach this goal.
McCall has been a regular exhibitor at the annual art show and has submitted his carvings and been recognized with numerous ribbons.