By RITA PAPAZIAN|
ots of prayer and staying power is the way Janet Christie described contributing factors to visitors attending the 63rd annual Dogwood Festival sponsored by the Women's Guild of the Greenfield Hill Congregational Church in Fairfield.
The Festival opened Saturday and will continue through Tuesday.
Christie, Mary Helen Fabacher and Ellen Dixon, the festival's fri- airwomen, stood in the church vestibule as the spring rain continued to drench the dogwood trees, but not the spirits of fairgoers and volunteers of the event that usually draws thousands of out-of-towners to Greenfield Hill's annual fund raiser to support the church's rnission projects that help women and children.
Music director Sandra Shaw Murphy led The Greenfield Hill Chancel Choir and the Men's Chorus in a musical selection inside the church. On the Green, Elmer Eriksson of Lakeville stood by his exhibit of birdhouses, wishing he had a full- sized one for himself with heat to seek shelter from the rain. Despite the weather, Eriksson took advantage of a visitor's inquiries to promote his crafts. "People can't seem to distinguish a birdhouse from a birdfeeder", he said.
In the church hall, Nick Badenhorst discussed stinkwood and yellowwood, both native woods of Capetown, that are part of his display of South African antiques and vintage furniture. The native South African opened a shop in Norwalk four months ago.
Stinkwood is named after the highly pungent aroma the wood gives off when it is first cut.
Laurie Swan, co-chairman of the Gift Boutique, said she had seen a steady flow of visitors, despite the rain. The boutique features dogwood-themed items along with a variety of unusual items for the garden, and whirlybird garden decorations.
The festival includes guided walking tours, (Donation $2),an art exhibit, a tag sale, children's entertainment, a plant, flower and herb tent, and a food garden.
The 63rd Annual Dogwood Festival continues today from noon to 5p.m.; Monday and Tuesday from 10 a.m. to 3:30p.m. Admission is free. For seated luncheon reservations, call 259-5596.