Building Community in the Northwest

Celebrating Together To Make The Mt. Airy Art Garage A Reality After completing our second weekend of the Mt. Airy Art Garage, we are all being struck by an unexpected experience. It’s not about how many visitors crossed the portals of our doors. It’s not about artists’ sales, and it’s not about more Holiday marketing ads to bring you in. It’s about community. We have been deeply moved by the warm embraces of visitors thanking us for what we are doing. We become teary-eyed at unexpected (and ongoing) dropoffs of home-made food for everyone at our festivities. We are touched by the musicians who have stepped forward to volunteer their time, for the love of art, to add warmth to everyone’s spirits in a cold Garage. We laugh with our artists as they run through the aisles in glee having sold a painting of the highest caliber. Everything is offered with a smile, or an embrace, and open heart. The crossroads of cooperation. Weavers Way has embraced our vision with their support. Our brainstorm, our vision became theirs, employees and managers alike. They have provided us with space, with opportunity, with moral support. Businesses in Germantown, Mt. Airy, and Chestnut Hill have stepped forward with food donations to feed the soul, provide Holiday cheer, and add some chocolate to the mouths of babes—old and young alike. Some of the businesses who have opened their hearts to us include High Point Café, Little Night Kitchen, Bredenbecks, Baker Street Bread, Point of Destination Café, Mi Puebla, Platinum Grill, Urban Café, Metropolitan Bakery, and more. Our first weekend, Meg, owner of High Point Café, welcomed us into the neighborhood with wonderful signs, coffee, and scones for all. Neighbors come by with baked goods, home-made treats, and cider! Our Mt. Airy Art Garage musicians have come from all walks of life, all volunteering their time—professionals such as Richard Drueding, Terri Rambo, Barry Goldstein, Zak Stock, Jerry Allender and his trio, Slippery Slope, to name a few. And then we are thrilled to have new, emerging artists like Mark Robinson, Ian Zolitar, Sondra Rodriguez—and that’s for starters. Some have already played, others will come soon. Perhaps Barry put it the  best this past weekend when he said “This place is really cool, and I am here to play and be a part of it.” That’s what it’s all about—cooperation, making art happen, all for the love of doing it. So, wish us well for our final weekend. We will have the largest, most diverse offering of fine art and handcraft yet—with live music all day long! In 2010, we move on to the next phase of our vision and dreams—to create an Artist Cooperative at 542 W. Carpenter Lane. The Mt. Airy Art Garage is not a competition—we are an Art Collaboration in its purest form. We are artists, creating art for you, our neighbors, our community. We are a magnet for energy, support, laughter, song, and for sharing. So join us, celebrate our last weekend, this Saturday and Sunday, Dec. 19-20 from 10 am-6 pm at 542 West Carpenter Lane. We welcome you with open arms.

Neither Rain Nor Snow…

Stopped the Mt. Airy Art Garage From It’s Grand Opening Over 225 people stopped into the Mt. Airy Art Garage, a community-based artist cooperative, on Saturday, Dec. 5 at 542 W. Carpenter Lane. Although snowy and damp, families and friends met to enjoy and purchase unique, one-of-a-kind gifts for the holidays— custom leatherwork, jewelers, mixed media and fiber artists, sculptors, photographers, painters, winter “art garb” and a host of other fine art and handcrafts. High Point Café, the Night Kitchen, Baker Street, and Weavers Way donated mouthwatering cakes, coffee, and treats to nourish the palate and warm everyone up. Live music fed the soul—Slippery Slope led a full-scale, foot-stomping, swaying “hootenanny,” Richard Dreuding warmed spirits with beautiful acoustic guitar, while the violin playing of Elizabeth Shaak and Hollis Payor put smiles on everyone.

What’s next? Come check us out this Saturday and Sunday, Dec. 12 and 13 from 10 am – 6 pm at 542 West Carpenter Lane—more delicious food from our sponsors in the Northwest (Bredenbecks and Mi Puebla, for starters), music from Terri Rambo and others. And, best of all, each weekend will feature all new artists from the Northwest! Visit us, shop, and share in the Holiday spirit. Admission is free and open to the public. And mark your calendars for Dec. 19 and 20, same time, same place! Join in our Holiday vision—meet the artists, buy wonderful things, watch us blossom and grow. Come to the Art Market! Friend us on Facebook, or visit us at www.mtairyartgarage.org.