New highlands arts and crafts gallery in Chesaw

CHESAW – Fiona, a new arts and crafts gallery in Chesaw, is holding an open house June 7 from 10 a.m. to 10 p.m. and June 8 from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Fiona specializes in the works of highlands artists and craftspeople.

Gift items and second-hand objects will be on display, as well as a plant sale of Highland-acclimated tomatoes, peppers and other garden delights. Local musicians will provide entertainment throughout the Open House and there will be coffee, teas, lemonade and pastries available.

According to owners Sandy Vaught and Carol McMillan, their mission statement is “to provide a showcase for local arts, crafts and talents, and to encourage appreciation and sharing in the knowledge of local Okanogan Highland’s residents.”

The shop “is a work in progress and future plans include space for a Highland Farmers Market, with a demonstration garden of plants including organic, native, xeriscape and acclimated vegetables, flowers and herbs,” the press release said. Eventually owners Vaughn and McMillan hope to offer classes in art, pottery, birding, gardening and other interests, as well as a resource list for those who want information about recreational or creative activities in the area. Fiona will also host periodic events featuring local musicians, poets and speakers. While Fiona is not a café, Vaughn and McMillan do plan on eventually offering coffee, teas, cold drinks, pastries and ice cream.

“Fiona was created to be a cultural center for the Highlands area, a place to show our talents and interests, and a center to inspire ourselves and visitors,” according to the press release.

When Vaughn and McMillan were traveling in Scotland, they met a “lively and creative young woman” at a caleigh (Celtic village dance), where “the Scottish Highlands bear a remarkable similarity to the Highlands of the Okanogan. During our visit, Fiona said to us: ‘Well, ye know, Lassies, what’s meant for ye, won’t pass by ye,’ and when later deciding whether or not to pursue this venture, her name and comment were remembered and seemed to be a perfect affirmation for this project.”

Fiona is at 2052 Chesaw Road in Chesaw.