The first weekend in May is pottery weekend in Maine as ceramics studios around the state open their doors to the public for the annual Maine Pottery Tour. Event hours are Saturday from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. and Sunday from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m., May 6 and 7 (some sites may vary).

Midcoast studios include Fireside Pottery in Warren, Autumn Cipala Pottery in Thomaston, Camden Clay Company in Camden, Van Der Ven Studios in Lincolnville, Clay! Community Ceramics in Rockport, Prescott Hill Pottery in Liberty, Barbara Walch Pottery in Thorndike, Everyday Pottery in Belmont and Jean Hardy Pottery in Belfast. Each will be marked by a tour flag.

The participating potters will welcome visitors to their studios to see their process, as well as view finished pieces. All are happy to talk about how they create, decorate and fire their work. Visitors will get an inside glimpse into the lives of these potters, tour their studios, peek into kilns and know that purchases are supporting the local creative economy.

The Maine Pottery Tour began when the Central Maine Clay Artists, a group of professional potters and ceramic artists working in the Kennebec Valley Area, decided to hold simultaneous spring open studios in 2012. Six years later, 39 studios from Alfred to Warren to Phillips will participate.

“The Pottery Tour is starting to get some attention,” said organizer Lori Watts of Fine Mess Pottery in Augusta. “Last year, we had visitors from as far away as Minnesota. There was a couple from Massachusetts who visited every single studio.”

The Clay! website has a brochure of the Coastal Leg of the tour at claymaine.com/maine-pottery-tour-map.

Courier Publications’ A&E Editor Dagney C. Ernest can be reached at (207) 594-4401, ext. 115; or dernest@courierpublicationsllc.com.