Mix together some cheesy Chuck Norris jokes, 2,000 pounds of clay, a couple of live bands and free ceramic madness and you’ve got Throwfest 2007, the pottery marathon hosted by the Craft Center beginning today at noon.

The Craft Center will be covered with clay for 24 hours as everyone from first-time throwers to pottery professionals will have a chance to try their hand at ceramics. It is free to learn and participate and there is a $5 glazing and firing fee for anyone who would like to take their crafts home.

Besides having dozens of ceramic spinners and over 2,000 pounds of clay donated by Blue Rose Studio in Arroyo Grande, the Craft Center will also have many forms of entertainment to keep crafters amused; cue the Chuck Norris entrance.

“With all the Chuck Norris jokes floating around everywhere, we wanted to play off of that and a whole ninja theme,” said Matthew Burch, a student manager and programs and special events coordinator at the Craft Center. “We will have two projectors and a TV, constantly showing all kinds of ninja DVDs.”

The Throwfest revolves around the theme “If you can Chuck it, you can throw it,” and in the front of the Craft Center, a huge banner lists 55 different Chuck Norris jokes, including some like “Bullets dodge Chuck Norris” and “Giraffes were created when Chuck Norris uppercutted a horse.”

Other forms of entertainment include a Johnny Cash cover band, the Cal Poly jazz band and an open stage for anyone who wants to grab an instrument and play.

There will also be a variety of creativity contests going on throughout the 24 hours of throwing.

“There will be all different kinds of contests like who can throw the biggest pot and who can throw a pot without hands,” Burch said. There are also competitions for different skill levels of throwers as well as a competition where throwers are blindfolded. These contests will take place from midnight to 1 a.m.

Anticipated peak hours are between 7 p.m. and 2 a.m., the general time period when the bands will be playing, Burch said. Then it will most likely pick up again around 9 a.m. when families start to come in.

Any clay or pots that don’t become fired will be mounded back up and recycled for later use.

The money raised from the pots that do get glazed and fired, along with any donations made, will go towards the Denise Waters Art Scholarship fund, an award that has been associated with the Throwfest ever since its start in 1998.

For more information, contact Matthew Burch at (805) 756-6379 or drop by the Craft Center in the University Union.

A schedule of entertainment and contests is also available at the Craft Center.

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