Indiana Gourd Society show celebrates 25 years


Carmel attorney Bill Freihofer displays a long handle dipper he grew at his Nora-area home. (Photo by Ann Marie Shambaugh)

By Ann Marie Shambaugh

The Indiana Gourd Society will hold its 25th annual show May 5 and 6 in Lebanon. The event will feature competitions, classes, sales and more for enthusiasts of all ages.

“First of all, we’re going to tell you a lot about gourds,” said Pat Moore, the 2017 show chair. “Some people don’t even know what a gourd is. They don’t know what you can do with them other than making birdhouses.”

Gourd-based items that will be on display – besides birdhouses – include decorated bowls, jewelry, purses and more. Judges will vote on first- through fifth-place winners in 77 categories.

Carmel attorney and longtime IGS member Bill Freihofer is planning to enter only one gourd this year, a long handle dipper that he carefully guided to grow with a knot in it. He’s been working on the technique for approximately 15 years.

“It’s something that keeps my curiosity up, trying to get a product that I think will compete well at our show,” Freihofer said.

The show also includes several categories for children and an area where they can make their own gourd-based creations.

“We’re really striving to try to get a lot more young people or kids involved,” Moore said. “A lot of us who are really into it are getting older, and we need to start cultivating the younger generation.”

Adults can enjoy watching various technique demonstrations or try their hand at some of them in more than 20 classes. Other activities include a silent auction, membership booth and seed sale, which is one of the main sources of income for IGS.

Moore, who lives near Rockville, said the silver anniversary show will be a great place for people who are new to the hobby and those with more experience to connect and discover all the gourd resources they need.

“We have plenty of people who can talk for hours about gourds if you want to stand there and listen,” she said.


When: 10 a.m. to 7:30 p.m. May 5, 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. May 6

Where: Boone County Fairgrounds, 1300 E 100 S, Lebanon

Cost: $5 admission, senior discount available, children admitted free

More info:

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