Hothouse Rodeo

A Fire Arts Extravaganza Weekend
Join the Chicago Avenue Fire Arts Center September 22-24 for workshops, demos, entertainment, fire and food!


Friday, 9/22
1 to 4 p.m.
Workshops: blacksmithing, pewter casting, and scratch tile making. See below for descriptions and registration.

Saturday, 9/23
10 a.m. to 3 p.m.
Workshop: blacksmithing. See below for descriptions and registration.

6:30 to 9 p.m.
Art Market: check out wares from local artists and CAFAC instructor who work with heat, spark, or flame.

6:30 to 9 p.m.
Open (Hot)House: our popular event is back, with demos, entertainment, food and refreshments! Free and open to everyone!

Sunday, 9/24
1 to 5 p.m.
Workshops: neon and flameworking. See below for descriptions and registration.


Blacksmithing Workshop: Animal Heads
Learn to forge animal heads with the step-by-step instructions of the Iron Menagerie© by the Guild of Metalsmiths. Includes all materials and a copy of the Iron Menagerie© materials to guide you in making your creations. Open to blacksmiths with beginning-level experience. Max 9.
Instructor: Jim Ricci

Friday, 9/22, 1 to 4 p.m.
Fee: $55

Pewter Casting Workshop
Build your casting skills by learning to cast lead-free pewter. We will be direct-carving into cuttlebones to create our patterns, a technique that has been used by jewelers and casters for ages. The scale is ideal for creating a pendant, ring, or pint-sized sculpture. The workshop will lead you from beginning concept of design through finishing and sealing your piece. All materials included. Open to all skill levels. Max 12.
Instructor: Jess Bergman Tank

Friday, 9/22, 1 to 5 p.m.
Fee: $55

Scratch Tile Workshop
Make your own cast bronze sculpture! In this workshop you will have the opportunity to scratch a relief pattern into a sand block. Then you can return Saturday evening for the fun and festivities of our Open (Hot)House and to experience your tile being poured during a live bronze pour after which you can pick up your piece. All materials included to create a 3" x 3" piece. Open to all skill levels. Max 25.
Instructor: Roger Karlson

Friday, 9/22, 1 to 5 p.m. (you can come anytime between 1 and 3:30 p.m. - plan to spend an hour or two making your mold)
Fee: $60

Blacksmithing Workshop: Bottle Openers
Build your blacksmith skills with a fun and useful project: making a bottle opener. They’re quick to make and can incorporate all basic blacksmithing processes in one compact project. We'll end class with a celebratory bottle-opening to try out your new tool (that means a beer or soda is included!). Open to all skill levels. Max 9.
Instructor: Brad Buxton

Saturday, 9/23, 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.
Fee: $65

Neon Workshop
Get an introduction to the captivating world of neon! In this workshop we'll cover a bit of the basics of neon tube bending. You'll get the opportunity to bend a small piece of glass over a ribbon burner. This is a great way to experience neon if you're considering taking one of our full-length neon classes. All materials included. Open to all skill levels. Max 6.
Instructor: Jon Ault

Sunday, 9/24, 1 to 4 p.m.
Fee: $40

Flameworking Workshop: Glass Beads
In this glass bead primer you'll get acquainted with working a torch and Italian soft glass. You will learn safety protocol, tool and equipment use, and beginner flameworking techniques. Through hands-on practice, you'll explore glass manipulation, shaping techniques and surface decoration. Expect to go home with 4-6 beads and the flamework basics to explore more techniques with confidence. Open to all skill levels. Max 8.
Instructor: Mary Ila Duntemann

Sunday, 9/24, 1 to 4 p.m.
Fee: $40