Skip to Main Content

How It All Began

How Garry Kvistad Turned an Idea into a Thriving Business

Important Moments in Woodstock Chimes Company History

Early 1970s

Mmetallophone

In the early 70s, Garry Kvistad began what would become Woodstock Chimes in -- of all places -- an Illinois landfill. Using the tubes from discarded lawn chairs, Garry crafted a metallophone, a xylophone-like instrument made with metal instead of wood.

Spring 1979

Garry and Diane

Diane agrees to let Garry exhibit his new windchime design in her sculpture booth at the Cincinnati Craft Fair. The first Chimes of Olympos was sold this day.

Spring 1979

First factor

Woodstock Chime's first factory was this barn in West Hurley, New York. A younger Garry is just as at home with a hammer as he is with a tuning fork or a drumstick.

1980 & '81

The Today Show

Garry, pictured here with NBC's Nancy Foreman in '80, catches a big break when he is asked by Gene Shalit to appear on The Today Show. He had caught his first big break a year earlier when interviewed by Susan Stamberg on NPR's All Things Considered and hundreds of listeners responded.

Summer 1984

Garry and Stacey

Garry and company president Stacey Bowers staff Woodstock Chimes' booth at the New York International Gift Show at the Pier in Manhattan. It is the inaugural year for Accent on Design at the NYIGF show.

Spring 1987

Wall Street Journal

Garry makes the pages of the Wall Street Journal with his first major commission, a giant chime for the County Courthouse in Montgomery, Alabama.

October 1990

NEXUS, and Toru Takemitsu.

Garry is pictured on stage with the ensemble, NEXUS, and the late Japanese composer Toru Takemitsu. Takemitsu was commissioned to compose a concerto for NEXUS and the Boston Symphony Orchestra as part of Carnegie Hall's centennial celebration.

Spring 1998

West Hurley factory

The employees of Woodstock Chimes pose outside the company's West Hurley factory. Woodstock Chimes were made in this building from 1985 until 1999, when Woodstock Chimes relocated to nearby Shokan, New York.

June 20, 2003

Wall Street Journal

The Wall Street Journal rates Woodstock Chimes' Chimes of Bach™ the best value and best overall in a review of five different chime makers. The Journal's independent music expert chose this chime for its sweet and gentle sound.

Summer 2003

St. Olaf College in Northfield

When the president of St. Olaf College in Northfield, Minnesota decided to build a memorial to former students, he thought of Woodstock Chimes. This massive collection of Woostock Windsinger Chimes are tuned to notes from the hymn Beautiful Savior, the signature song of the St. Olaf Choir.

December 5, 2003

Garry, with NEXUS and the Los Angeles Philharmonic

Garry appears with NEXUS as a soloist with the Los Angeles Philharmonic in the new Walt Disney Concert Hall. Shown here is one of the two custom sets of Woodstock Chimes used in Takemitsu's From me flows what you call Time.

December 20, 2003

The Paul Winter Consort

The Paul Winter Consort (Paul, far right) at the 24th Annual Winter Solstice Celebration in the Cathedral of St. John the Divine, NYC. Behind them is Paul's revolving Solstice Tree, made up of assorted bells, gongs and dozens of Woodstock Chimes.

Early 2000s

This super-sized Woodstock Chime is tuned to the same scale as the Chimes of Bali. This 18-foot tall sculptural stand, created by Swiss designer Bernhard Anliker, was installed on the shore of Goose Pond in front of the current Woodstock Chimes headquarters location.

Today

Garry, with NEXUS and the Los Angeles Philharmonic

Woodstock Chimes' current home, Olivewoods, is nestled in New York's Catskill Mountains. You can see it's signature giant Woodstock Chime in front.

September 2021

The Paul Winter Consort

In September 2021, Woodstock Chimes was acquired by Sullivans, a leader in the home decor industry. The combination of Sullivans' excellence in indoor decor and Woodstock Chimes' success in garden/outdoor decor is sure to be a winner.