Arts and Entertainment

Gil, Bonnie Drake featured at Artistry in Wood

Gil and Bonnie Drake are the featured carvers at this year’s 24th annual Artistry In Wood show presented at the Monroe Fairgrounds by the Quilceda Carvers. - Courtesy photo
Gil and Bonnie Drake are the featured carvers at this year’s 24th annual Artistry In Wood show presented at the Monroe Fairgrounds by the Quilceda Carvers.
— image credit: Courtesy photo

A talented maker of tools, Gil Drake and his wife, Bonnie, are featured carvers at the Artistry in Wood show presented by the Quilceda Carvers at Evergreen State Fairgrounds in Monroe April 18 and 19.

They are long-time members of the club and love to teach others this great craft, said Roy Stillwell.

Gil is a talented maker of carving tools and owner of the company, Drake Knives. They travel the United States attending carving shows and other events to market his high quality tools.

One of his selling points is that he will sharpen his knives for free.

Gil Drake has always had a love for wood. He did cabinet work for several years with carving and family boating being his hobbies. He has carved for about 25 years and after much encouragement, Bonnie finally gave in and joined him in his hobby about eight years ago.

Bonnie has always enjoyed working in her yard, creating a beautiful park setting. She also enjoys tole painting and likes to try new crafts like basket weaving, card making, cooking and enjoys sewing. Drake Knives was born in 1992.

Bonnie and Gil have contributed countless volunteer hours to The Quilceda Carving Club, Stillwell said. Gil was president for two years with Bonnie at his side as the newsletter editor and hospitality chair. Gil has contributed several chainsaw carved bears to the club for raffle prizes.

Quilceda Carvers annual show is the largest show of its type in the state and one of the largest on the West Coast. Woodcarvers from all over the United States and Canada converge to show their beautiful carvings, compete for ribbons and prizes, and share this ancient art form. It is not required to be a member of the Quilceda Carvers to enter carvings in the show.

A panel of trained carvers from throughout the region will award ribbons in categories from beginner to expert. They will also offer classes to those wishing to learn how to carve.

Visitors to previous shows have often commented at how amazed they are at the number and the quality of carvings on display.

Also showcased are many carvings from previous winners that are no longer eligible for awards.

Admission is free, but donations are appreciated and help support our efforts to share this timeless craft. For information see the Web site at

Quilceda Carvers meet every fourth Saturday in Marysville at the Red Barn at Jennings Park, starting with a class from 9 a.m. to noon.

“Then we have a little potluck lunch and a show-n-tell, Stillwell said.

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