Kentucky Artisan Center at Berea
Ron Owens to Create License Plate Birdhouses at Kentucky Artisan Center at Berea

Press Release Date:  Tuesday, February 03, 2015  
Contact Information:  Gwen Heffner
Information Specialist
Kentucky Artisan Center at Berea
Phone: 859 - 985-5448 Ext. 230

On Saturday, Feb. 7, Ron Owens, of Mount Vernon, will demonstrate how he creates birdhouses using recycled wood and license plates from 10:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. at the Kentucky Artisan Center at Berea.

A native of Rockcastle County, Owens is a self-taught artisan who has worked with willow and recycled materials for over 20 years. He creates a line of furniture and baskets in an old restored 50- year-old barn and collects and harvests willow trees from local areas. Owens cuts willow branches year round in order to work with it while it is fresh and pliable. His durable willow baskets, also available at the center, are made in a variety of shapes and sizes and can be used to hold potted plants, magazines and other items.

  Recycled license plate birdhouse by Ron Owens

Recently, Owens began looking around at other recycled materials to create new works. He discovered a large quantity of discarded license plates and had the idea of using them to create a new product. The end result is his new line of birdhouses constructed from recycled wood and willow twigs. Owens bends the license plates to form the roof, creating a durable, colorful and interesting abode for birds year round.

Birdhouses and baskets by Owens are regularly available at the Kentucky Artisan Center, located at 200 Artisan Way, just off Interstate 75 at Berea Exit 77. The center’s exhibits, shopping and travel and information areas are open daily from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m., and the cafe is open from 9:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. Admission is free.

The Kentucky Artisan Center at Berea currently features works by more than 700 artisans from more than 100 counties across the Commonwealth. Special exhibits on display include “Put a Lid on It: Containers by Kentucky Artisans,” through Feb. 28, 2015; and in the lobby, “Kentucky Murals by Frank W. Long” through April 18, 2015. For more information about events call 859-985-5448, go to the center’s website at  or visit us on Facebook at

The Kentucky Artisan Center at Berea is an agency in the Tourism, Arts and Heritage Cabinet of the Commonwealth of Kentucky.