Bottle Works hosting a variety of events
BY KAYLA PONGRAC
Our Town Correspondent
Many holiday-themed events for people of all ages will be taking place at Bottle Works—Arts on Third Avenue in Johnstown’s Cambria City neighborhood now through the end of the year.
Those interested in doing some last-minute shopping and supporting local artists can visit the Merry Maker’s Mart inside the non-profit’s Art Works Building (413 Third Avenue). The shop is an extension of the Gallery Shoppe, a year-round shop featuring all types of art (including books, candles, paintings and jewelry) created by local and regional artists. The Merry Maker’s Mart will be open until Dec. 31 and features the work of over 70 artists.
“The Maker’s Mart has a number of exceptional vendors this year,” said Melody Tisinger, director of advancement and operations at Bottle Works. “Shopping local is community support at its core. When you purchase from a local artist, a small business, or from a non- profit, you are contributing to the community’s economic health. Your dollars are making a direct impact. Shopping local also provides gift givers an opportunity to purchase one of a kind gifts for themselves and/or for a loved one. In the case of the Bottle Works, the Merry Maker’s Mart draws new people to our establishment. They may have been looking for a cool gift, but they leave with a new understanding of the Bottle Works and all that we have to offer.”
Patrons can choose one-of-a-kind gifts from Coastal Inspired Glass by Ken Robb (glass creations inspired by the beach); The Sheepskin Shop (wool clothing and accessories); Kwelsh Frameworks (enhanced graphics of Johnstown’s historic and industrial landmarks); Dan Eash Pottery (pottery and wood crafted items); Sherry DiPaolo Art (mixed media art); Bead Chics (jewelry); Motions in Glass (jewelry, stained glass, and original paintings); Alan Rauch Fine Art (original paintings and prints), The Art of Jason Licht (comic and fantasy prints) and more.
Once again this year, a BW Giving Tree is set up in the Art Works gallery. Donors who give a monetary contribution will be invited to place a personalized ornament on the tree. Proceeds from all donations will help provide scholarships for youth who are interested in attending camps and/or educational programs held at Bottle Works. The staff at Bottle Works has created these scholarships in order to make their youth programs accessible to everyone.
“The Bottle Works awards nearly $5,000 in scholarships each year,” Tisinger said. “One goal of the Bottle Works is to be a hub for creativity for all. Through our art programs, many participants can explore and, in some cases, discover their artistic skills and talents. Our scholarship program at the Bottle Works makes these opportunities for artistic discovery attainable to all. We don’t want finances to be an obstacle. When businesses or community members give to this program, they are encouraging youths to be a part of the cultural movement in Johnstown.”
Those who can’t donate in person at Art Works are invited to donate online at www.bottleworks.org. Tisinger emphasized that gifts of any amount are welcomed and appreciated.
Also taking place this holiday season is a Winter Wonderland Days Art Camp. The two-day camp, suitable for children between the ages of 6 and 12, is scheduled to take place from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Dec. 27 and 30.
“The Art Camps provide a fun outlet for kids over winter break,” Tisinger said. “Participants will play classic indoor winter games such as a fun snowball fight, carpet square sleighing and more.”
If childcare is needed, parents have the option to drop off their children as early as 7:30 a.m. and pick them up as late as 5:30 p.m. for a nominal hourly fee per child. All students must pre-register. They should bring their own lunch, water bottle, drinks and snack.
The last big event on the 2019 calendar at Bottle Works is the final Iron to Arts Corridor Concert. This concert will bring to town Tim Wetmiller and John Bagnato with special guest bassist Beni Rossman. Opening the show will be Rachel Allen and her son, Johnny Bayush.
The concert is scheduled to begin at 7 p.m. Dec. 28. Doors are to open at 6:30 p.m. A full cash bar will be available that evening.
“The Iron to Arts Corridor Concert Series has been a magnificent display of our region’s artistic talents,” Tisinger said. “A cool side story: Tim Wetmiller was a direct musical influence to Johnny (Bayush); and to be opening up for Tim and John is a full-circle moment for that family.”
Wetmiller, Bagnato and Rossman intend to play some holiday songs, plus a popular song or two from the 1960s or 1970s.
“The concert is a fun activity to do around the holidays,” Tinsinger said. “Many friends and family members are in town, and they are often looking for things to do while they are visiting.”
Bottle Works—Arts on Third Avenue’s regular operating hours are 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Mondays and Tuesdays; 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. Wednesdays through Fridays and 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturdays.
For more information about any of these upcoming events at Bottle Works—Arts on Third Avenue or to register a child for the youth camp, call a Bottle Works staff member at 814-535-2020.
Looking back on the past year, Tisinger said 2019 was “a year of realized dreams.”
“The Bottle Works was able to dream big with the installation of our newest capital projects: Jackie’s Garden (the green roof) and the First National Bank Pop Plaza,” she said. “The projects have been well-received by the community. As the community supports the Bottle Works, we in turn, can continue to create and maintain high-quality Arts education programs for all. We hope to continue to be a safe place to gather and celebrate Johnstown’s rich culture and heritage.”
Anyone interested in becoming a Bottle Works member in the New Year is asked to call a staff member.
“Our membership drive is now open, and this is a perfect way to get involved in all the upcoming activities at the Bottle Works,” Tisinger said. “As a member of the Bottle Works, you get an all-access pass to our programs, special events and other special projects.”