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Ready to be blown away? The beloved old tradition of handcrafted coal figurines is back and better than ever! Under new ownership, Kentucky Coal Crafters (KCC) has moved to Pikeville, Kentucky located in Coal Run Village.  Don't worry - they're still using the same "mixing secrets" and molds as before, so you can expect the same high-quality products that MidWest Crafts was known for from 1975 until 2002.

It all started in the spring of 2002 when "Buddy" Wilson and Alvin Powell had a chat. Alvin, itching to get back into the crafting game, suggested the business reopen. And just like that, a new partnership was formed and Kentucky Coal Crafters was reborn. The team bought some of the old MidWest Crafts materials and equipment and began the move from Whitley City to Stearns, Kentucky - the heart of coal country for over 40 years. Now, Michael Johnson is at the helm, trained by Alvin himself to maintain the same level of quality that originated in 1975. It's a testament to the rich heritage of Pike County, once the largest coal supplier in the state, to have a part of it back within its borders.

While there used to be a few coal crafters in the area in the 90s, Michael believes KCC is the only one still in operation today. And he's ready to shake things up! Not only will they continue producing and selling the beloved figurines that KCC is known for, but they'll also be adding new products to their already impressive catalog.

So, how do they make these stunning creations? It's a unique process - coal, coal dust, and a resin binder are used to mold and shape the objects. After adding a peroxide catalyst to harden the mixture, the objects come out of the process with a grey color. But fear not - a quick spray of black lacquer gives them that natural coal appearance. It may seem strange to spray paint coal to make it look like coal, but trust us, it works like a charm.

Alvin, who has spent over 20 years perfecting the process, has trained Michael to be just as skilled. On a good day, they can create about 40 larger pieces and over 100 smaller objects, from coal miners to mountain Madonnas to adorable animals and trains - all crafted from coal. And they're not afraid to take on a challenge. In fact, they're excited to offer custom orders for individuals and companies looking to have their logos or objects immortalized in coal. Talk about a unique and meaningful piece of art!

Don't miss out on this renewed tradition. Stop by Kentucky Coal Crafters and take home a piece of history.