In Focus: Community Woodworking Shop
John Meyer and Adam Gunderson, both seasoned woodworkers, have been working long and hard to set up the community woodworking shop as part of the nonprofit Center for Creativity (CFC). The shop is now well equipped with an extensive array of woodworking machinery they have generously lent to the facility. This equipment, along with machines from Oren Helbok, a retiring professional cabinetmaker from Bloomsburg, PA will provide a great resource for anyone interested in taking woodworking classes or joining the community of woodworkers at the Factory. Contact John Meyer at 570-916-8145 for more information or if you’d like to make a tax-deductible donation of money/ tools/machines/wood.
With the arrival of cooler nights, the magnificent colors of the changing leaves, apple picking, pumpkin carving and, of course, cozy nights by the fire, summer is a distant memory as we’ve resumed our busy schedule at the Pajama Factory
With the change of season, we are in the process of winterizing the building while stoking the fires of our First Friday program. (We took a bit of a hiatus over the summer while the outdoor activities in the Williamsport downtown took center stage). In addition to the November First Friday, when we hosted a professional author’s reading in the Community Room (organized by April Line) and the more recent "extremely famous and highly anticipated" Equinox sale at the building, preparations are underway for December’s 3rd Annual Holiday Artisan’s Market, which is sure to be a blast so you won’t want to miss it.
And, it’s never too soon to begin to think about next year’s Artist-in-Residence program (our 5th one to-date) so please spread the word to anyone who might be interested in applying. It’s a great way to bring outside talent to inspire us all at the Factory and, for the visiting Residents, the Factory offers a new and stimulating place for them to work.
As always, thanks for your continued support and we wish everyone a Happy Thanksgiving. While we are thankful at the Pajama Factory to have survived Super Storm Sandy, our thoughts go out to everyone who was affected and less fortunate than we were.
– Mark and Susie Winkelman
Our big news is that we recently received approval from the city of Williamsport to build residential live/work lofts at the Factory. The approvals are a critical step in our efforts to ensure that the Pajama Factory can become a true 24/7 creative incubator. We plan to convert approximately 30% of the floor area into residential space that will consist of about 45 affordable loft spaces for rent as well as 20 additional high–end loft spaces for rent/sale on the 5th floor. Next on our agenda will be to explore the opportunities that might be tapped by extending this idea of living and working in the same space, essential for the contemporary creative artist and entrepreneur, to the residential neighborhood surrounding the Pajama Factory. Stay-tuned.
Other work is continuing around the building including some recent upgrades to the courtyard garden, the addition of heat in newly rented spaces, and we are beginning to get ready for the winter months, starting to weather seal the windows to keep our spaces a bit less drafty with the onset of the cold.
More importantly, we are thrilled to have completed the legal work required for securing private funding to kick-off construction of our next round of studio spaces on the 3rd floor. With a long waitlist of potential tenants, we’re sure to fill these new studios as soon as they are built!
Around the Factory
The Community Room on the ground floor has been hopping. Recent productions have included Neil Simon’s The Sunshine Boys, The Rocky Horror Picture Show by Bob Taylor’s Custom Tailored Productions as well as Billtown Burlesque’s Beauty and the Beast & Band Scramble.
In addition to the open studios throughout the building the past two First Fridays, we’ve hosted readings from local authors/writers and a professional authors’ reading performance which switched gears for an open mic session to anyone who wanted to share their own work. Later in October, the Pajama Factory artists staged a two night pop-up gallery exhibit with Artists Larry Miller, Luke Yocum, Dave Becker, Lynn Becker, Ralph Wilson, Mark Stabley and other Factory tenants exhibiting new and seldom seen works. Also, our own bookkeeper, Lisa Hall just hosted a free seminar-Self-Employment 101- for all our wonderful entrepreneurs (or wanna-be business starters). For those of you, who are local, make sure to keep tuned-in to events on Facebook so you don’t miss out on these great offerings each month.
A private party that was booked in our special events Clearstory space (available for special events) really showed off how the factory can be transformed with the right mix of energy and talent. The party featured an aerialist performance by a recent Cirque du Soleil alumnus as well as some body painting by our own Dave Stabley. The model was photographed by Ron Moreland from One Eye Digital, another one of our tenants. And speaking of Ron, check out his Youtube video taken in the halls of the Pajama Factory.
Additionally, "Lobby 7", the space just past the fire doors of Pajama Factory building 7, has grown into an ad-hoc community space. Some evenings you’ll find the Billtown Burlesque rehearsing for a show, other times a theatrical practice or a few musicians. In the Winter months you might find a pot luck supper on Sunday afternoons. There’s also a large book case where people leave and take books magazines, and journals.
Finally, we would like to extend a huge welcome to the new artists that have joined our community. Larry Miller is a painter and Jen Leidhecker is a mixed medium artist. Check them out on our website.
Autumn, the year’s last, loveliest smile. (William Cullen Bryant)
– Mark and Susie Winkelman