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Turpentine gets time to shine
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Roger Branch offers a lesson in the making of turpentine to youngsters during the annual Catface Turpentine Festival in Portal. - photo by SCOTT BRYANT/staff

Portal’s annual time to shine, which rolls around the first Saturday of October, celebrates the town’s rich agricultural heritage.
    This year, the 33rd edition of the Catface Country Turpentine Festival, organized by the Portal Heritage Society, was no different.
    There were the requisite live music, vendors selling food — including rosin potatoes — crafts and children’s rides.
    And, of course, there was an opportunity to see the historic E.C. Carter and Sons Turpentine Still in action.
    Why is it called Catface? That’s because the slash marks in pine trees where rosin is collected resemble cats’ whiskers, according to local folklore.
    If you missed it this year or have never been, mark your calendar for the first Saturday in October in 2015 to catch the Turpentine Festival.

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