In days gone by, visitors searching Oregon’s beaches often found treasures from the east: blown glass floats, in intriguing shades of green and blue. Used by Japanese fishing crews to float their nets, these spheres were as small as two inches (5 cm) or as large as two feet (.6 m). They were hoarded, polished and adored, the ultimate find for a dedicated beachcomber.
Now that fishing vessels around the world use buoyant plastic, a blown glass float is a rare find – except on the beaches of Lincoln City, where more than 2,000 of them are found each winter. Annually we put out the number of floats reflected by the year – so 2001 floats were placed in 2001, 2002 in 2002, etc…
The project began in 1997, when a local artist first thought of glass floats as an intriguing way to launch the new millennium. Lincoln City sponsored the project, hosting the inaugural season in 1999-2000. Tourists came from around the country to search for their own brilliantly-colored, signed and numbered glass float.
For Lincoln City, the Millennium Float project was a perfect combination of art and the outdoors. Those who came in search of a float often found their way to area galleries, where unnumbered floats were available for sale along with a dizzying array of fine art glass from around the world.
The city continues the promotion annually, running from Mid-October to Memorial Day – with hand-crafted glass floats being placed along the 7-1/2 miles (12 km) of public beach in Lincoln City, from the Roads End area to the Cutler City area. You find it, you keep it!
We realize that not every beachcomber finds a float. If you are one of the less fortunate beachcombers, not to worry! The artists at the Jennifer L. Sears Glass Art Studio can show you how to blow your very own unique and beautiful float.
Blow your own float!
Jennifer L. Sears Glass Art Studio
Want a beautiful way to blow hot air? Sign up to learn and get more information by contacting the Jennifer L. Sears Glass Art Studio, 4821 SW Highway 101, Lincoln City, OR 97367, 541-996-2569. Parking is available at public lots on SW 50th and on the east side of Hwy 101, just north of 48th. Check out their website for more info!
Blow Your Own Float – Cost $75
This is a hands on session that allows you to pick and apply the colors, twist and turn them if you want, and then blow them out into a unique and beautiful float. Impress your float collecting friends and relatives; you can be sure that they don’t have a float like yours! It is possible to “walk-in” on the spot, if there is an opening; however it will be busy in the summer so call ahead to reserve your space. Your float will be ready to pick up after noon the next day or can be shipped for $10.
No previous experience is required.
Make Your Own Paperweight – Cost $75
This is a guided tour of the paperweight making process. Our instructors will help you experience the magic of hot gooey glass! You will be able to apply the color and form the glass into a beautiful paperweight made by the one and only YOU! It is possible to “walk-in” on the spot if there is an opening, however it will be busy in the summer so call ahead to reserve your space. Paperweight can be picked up after noon the next day or can be shipped for a fee. No previous experience is required.
Other instruction available by pre-arrangement with the artists.
If you are interested in signing-up for any of the classes NOW please speak with one of the glassblowers.
The Jennifer L. Sears Glass Art Studio is a project of the Lincoln City Visitor & Convention Bureau and Lincoln City Urban Renewal. For more information, contact the Lincoln City Visitor & Convention Bureau, 800-452-2151 or 541-996-2569. Or email us at: email@example.com or visit us at our website: www.jennifersearsglassart.com.
Located just south of Lincoln City and 1/2 mile north of Salishan Lodge, Alder House III can be found by turning east (away from Siletz Bay) onto Immonen Road and traveling about 3/4 mile. Alder House III is an open studio welcoming visitors to watch as crafts-people ply the 2000-year-old art of turning molten glass into beautiful objects.
The Alder House opened 38 years ago and is the oldest glass blowing studio in Oregon. The first studio burned down only one year after it opened. In 1971 the second studio was built, and on July 5 the first piece of glass was made in their new geodesic dome. No longer in a geodesic dome but rather in a romantic wood building tucked away in a wooded area, Alder House III opened on March 15, 1999.
Visitors to the Alder House are offered the unique experience of watching art in its creation. Anne and Buzz Williams and Mike Smith are happy to share information about their art and the techniques used to create their magnificent works. Alder House III is open from 10 until 5 daily from the 15th of March until the end of November.