Connecticut's cavalcade of teddy bears
April 19, 1997
Web posted at: 12:00 a.m. EDT (0000 GMT)
(CNN) -- From Paddington to Pooh and all the shades of cuddly in between, teddy bears are tugging at heart strings and pocketbooks this weekend in Danbury, Connecticut.
The O'Neill Center is hosting the fourth annual Cavalcade of Teddy Bears Show and Sale on Saturday. Show producer John Pringle says adult collectors make up most of the crowd, but that the event is more sentimental than your average weekend swap meet.
"Teddy bears are a universal symbol of love -- most of us had teddy bears when we were children," he says. "They bring a warm, fuzzy feeling."
As a matter of fact, visitors are encouraged to tote their favorite fuzzy-wuzzy along -- not just to share the love, but to show off.
"We have a teddy bear contest for largest bear, the smallest, the most likely to succeed, the prettiest couple ...," says Pringle.
For those who want to cut through the fluff, so to speak, there are bear-making workshops and seminars -- including one cryptically called "It Starts With a Goat."
"We have Joe Sours from Missouri, who raises goats and llamas and sheers the animals to get wool," explains Pringle. "I don't know anybody else in the business who makes bears from the wool of their own animals."
Mohair and fabric dealers will be selling their wares, too, for bear-lovers who prefer a less hands-on approach. Pringle says other dealers are offering handmade stuffed bears as well as antique and modern, mass-produced bears.
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