Saving time will take on a new meaning Labor Day weekend at the 31st MidSouth Regional meeting of the National Association of Watch and Clock Collectors.
Hosted by five local chapters of the international organization, the event takes place this year from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Sept. 3 and from 8 a.m. to noon Sept. 4 at the Dalton Convention Center, 2211 Tony Ingle Parkway, Dalton, Georgia.
"This is the first year we've gone to Dalton," National Association of Watch and Clock Collectors member Fran Geier said in a phone call, noting that in past years, the event has typically taken place at the Chattanooga Convention Center.
Over the course of the two days, guests can expect to see a wide variety of timepieces from grandfather clocks and pocket watches to cuckoo clocks and traditional watches and everything in between. Lectures, workshops, a tailgate, door prizes, a free table for those seeking treasures and a shopping mart are also on deck for attendees.
"The National Association of Watch and Clock Collectors started in Columbia, Pennsylvania. That's home to a museum with timepieces dating back hundreds of years," Geier said. "In the decades since, it's grown to have chapters and members all over the world, even as far as Australia."
Geier said the focus for the organization and the annual event is horology, the art of making clocks and watches. The MidSouth regional is hosted by the Atlanta; Birmingham, Alabama; Huntsville, Alabama; Nashville; and Knoxville chapters, and Geier said this year's theme is "Creations by Members," with a major focus on pieces that chapter members themselves have done.
"We have hobbyists and collectors that will be featuring a lot pieces that have a great history," she said.
Geoff Parker, local National Association of Watch and Clock Collectors chapter member and Soddy-Daisy resident, is hosting one of the workshops on how to build your own watch.
"My presentation will be from the perspective of how to pick the kind of watch you want and then build it yourself to get exactly what you're looking for," Parker said in a phone call. "You don't have to be a watchmaker; you just need to have the tools and a certain level of skill to be able to do it."
Parker will also have items of his own creation he will be showcasing during the event, including a mini-grandfather clock, a watch winder, pocket watch and three wristwatches.
"Watchmaking is actually something that can be really doable," he said. "There's options for everything from kits that are ready to go to designs where you can start from the plate up or modify the movement builds."
To attend Parker's workshop or any of the programs during the regional, guests can register at nawcc.org or sign up on site during the event. Admission to the mart is $10, but admission to the exhibit and lectures are free, according to a news release.
To learn more about the MidSouth regional and the National Association of Watch and Clock Collectors, or to get connected with an area chapter, visit nawcc.org.
Email Brandi Dixon at email@example.com.
If You Go:
WHAT: National Association of Watch and Clock Collectors annual Mid-South regional.
WHEN: 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Sept. 3. and 8 a.m. to noon Sept. 4.
WHERE: Dalton Convention Center, 2211 Tony Ingle Parkway, Dalton, Ga.
COST: $10 for the mart, exhibit and lectures are free.
MORE INFO: nawcc.org.