Whittle the Wood four-day lineup begins Wednesday with carving competition | CraigDailyPress.com

Whittle the Wood four-day lineup begins Wednesday with carving competition

Robert Waits wields his saw at the 2019 annual Whittle the Wood Rendezvous.
Andy Bockelman/ for Craig Press

On Wednesday, the Whittle the Wood Rendezvous kicks off its annual wood-carving competition and music festival, which will go throughout the weekend. 

This is the 22nd year Craig has hosted the signature event that draws a crowd from all over the Yampa Valley and Colorado. Whittle the Wood is going to have all of its token activities including the wood-carving competition, a live quick-carve chainsaw competition, bounce houses, a silent auction, food vendors and beer gardens.

New this year will be an ax throwing competition on Friday and Saturday, along with an archery shoot with Colorado Parks and Wildlife on Saturday. 

The wood-carving competition starts at 8 a.m. Wednesday, and the park will be open to the public all day to watch the carvings as they progress. According to event organizers, at the start of the competition, each carver is assigned a wood log randomly through a lottery.

Chainsaw artists will have from Wednesday until Saturday afternoon to work on their carvings. Many of the artists have returned year after year to compete and create wooden sculptures, many of which are on display throughout the community.

In years past, the competition has produced carvings of many different themes including eagles, Native American chiefs, sea creatures, exotic animals and cartoon characters.

On Saturday afternoon, the final products receive awards chosen by a panel of local judges. There are also awards for the artist’s choice and people’s choice winners. 

The event will go from Wednesday through Saturday, with both ticketed and non-ticketed activities. Wednesday and Thursday have free admission all day.

On Thursday, the city will be offering root beer floats from 6:30-8:30 p.m. before starting a movie in the park. The movie will be Disney’s “Onward,” which is rated PG. 

On Friday, admission is free from 8 a.m. until 5:30 p.m., when tickets will be required for the live music. Gates for the concert open at 6 p.m. and tickets can be purchased at the gate for $20. Children under age 12 will get in free. 

Music on Friday night will open at 7 p.m. with Head for the Hills, a four-piece string band out of Fort Collins. The Lil Smokies, a bluegrass act out of Missoula, Montana, will take the stage next as the headliner.

On Saturday morning, MOCO Trails is sponsoring a Wake the Whittler 5K and 30K runs that begin at 8 a.m. Saturday admission is free from 8 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. and there will be food and craft vendors throughout the day. 

The gates will open at 1 p.m. Saturday and there will be music rolling through the stage the rest of the day. The acts on Saturday will start out with higher energy blue grass groups; High Country Hustle and Stray Grass. 

Later in the night, the music will move into more country sets including Tyler Reese Tritt, daughter of country singer Travis Tritt; Texas Hill featuring Craig Wayne Boyd, Adam Wakefield and Casey James; and husband and wife duo, Thompson Square, will be headlining. 

The city is providing a shuttle service to Loudy Simpson Park from four different locations in Craig, starting at noon Saturday. The last shuttle will depart from Loudy Simpson after the headlining band wraps up. 

Guests are asked not to bring coolers or alcohol, and if pets are coming along, to keep them leashed at all times. For more information on Whittle the Wood, visit http://www.whittlethewood.com.

Whittle the Wood 2022 schedule

Wednesday June 22 – Free admission all day
8 a.m. carving contest begins

Thursday June 23 – Free admission all day
8 a.m. – dusk carving competition is open

7:30 p.m – 8:30 p.m. Free root beer floats

8:30 p.m. Free movie in the park: Onward

Friday June 24 – Free admission 8 a.m. to 5:30 p.m.
8 a.m. carving competition is open

2 p.m. beer garden opens

4:30 p.m. cornhole tournament

6 p.m. gates open $20 tickets at the gate

7 p.m. Head for the Hills

8:30 p.m. The Lil Smokies

Saturday June 25 – Free admission 8 a.m. – 12:30 p.m. 
8 a.m. Wake the Whittler 5K  & 30K

10 a.m. – 3 p.m. Bear River Young Life classic car show (downtown Craig)

10 a.m. Silent auction begins – winners determined at 3 p.m.

11 a.m. – 2 p.m. Colorado Parks & Wildlife archery shoot

noon – beer garden opens

noon – shuttle begins

1 p.m. gates open – $30 tickets available at the gate

1 p.m. quick carve chainsaw competition

1:30 p.m. cornhole tournament

2 p.m. quick carve auction

2:30 p.m. carving competition ends and judging begins

2:30 p.m. Live music begins with High Country Hustle

3 p.m. silent auction ends

4 p.m. Live music continues with Stray Grass

5:15 p.m. Whittle the Wood winners announced on stage

7 p.m Texas hill takes the stage

8:30 p.m. Headliner: Thompson Square


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