Grandmother and grandson participating in Arts and Crafts Festival have greater goal

As her grandson Elliot Bradley watches, Debra Bradley ties one of bandanas she crafts on to Norah, a 5-month-old Great Pyrenees pup. The Bradleys will sell the bandanas at a booth Sunday at the Lawrence Parks and Recreation Fall Arts and Crafts Festival with the goal of raising money to have Norah trained as a therapy dog to aid Elliot.

Debra Bradley will re-enter the arts and crafts circuit Sunday with a purpose.

Bradley will have a booth Sunday at the 38th annual Lawrence Parks and Recreation Fall Arts and Crafts Festival. The show will be from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. at South Park, 1141 Massachusetts St.

She’s a crafty person but hasn’t taken her handmade products to shows since she sold painted gourds in Michigan before moving to Lawrence five years ago, Bradley said.

Her motivation to start vending at shows now is her 15-year-old grandson, Elliot Bradley. He recently bought a female Great Pyrenees puppy with the goal of having her trained as a therapy dog.

“He plans to have her trained for his needs in Manhattan,” Bradley said. “It’s quite expensive.”

The pup, Norah, is 5 months old and can’t be trained until she’s a year old, Bradley said. The grandmother is using that time to craft bandanas and treats for dogs with her first show Sunday at South Park.

“I’ve never done this before,” she said. “There’s two different kinds of bandanas. One slips over the head, and the other ties.”

She’ll be at the festival with Elliot, Norah and a lot of bandanas to choose from, Bradley said.

“I have some that look like flannel shirts, Halloween ones and a few Jayhawk ones,” she said. “Right now, I’m working on a (Vincent) Van Gogh ‘Starry Night’ one.”

Although this will be her first Fall Arts and Crafts Festival as a vendor, she has visited the show in the past with her grandchildren and mom, Bradley said.

“I’ve always enjoyed it and been impressed with the vendors,” she said. “We’re looking for a nice crowd Sunday.”

That’s what festival organizer Duane Peterson anticipates, as well. The Parks and Rec special events/recreation/facilities and operations supervisor said the Fall Arts and Crafts Festival always draws a crowd to South Park but should do very well with the current run of mild days predicted to continue through the weekend.

“The weather is supposed to be fantastic,” he said. “We’re looking for a huge turnout if it’s like it is supposed to be.”

The festival was on track to have from 130 to 140 arts and crafts booths, Peterson said. Many vendors offering homemade arts and crafts make the show part of their fall routine as they make a circuit of Midwest shows, he said.

“They love Lawrence because we are such an artsy community,” he said. “They have so many fall shows to choose from. The ones they are interested in are the bigger ones with a good turnout.”

Vendors offering a wide variety of food will join the arts and craft booths at the festival, and Free State Brewery will have a beer garden, Peterson said.

The festival will also feature live entertainment from the Happy Times Square Dancers at 11 a.m., Lawrence City Band at noon, the Beer Bellies at 1 p.m., Kim and the Quake Band at 2 p.m., Coal Creek Band at 3 p.m. and Spirit Dancer Dennis Roger at 4 p.m., Peterson said. Children’s entertainment will include pony rides, an inflatable obstacle course and the South Lawrence Art Guild’s children’s arts and crafts booth, he said.