Greetings,

Brrr…the new year came in with quite a cold spell everywhere - including Williamsport, but the Factory seemed to be a bit warmer than I remember in recent years. Our efforts to re-caulk and seal up the historic windows seems to be helping.

Mark and I spent the last week of the year (between Christmas and New Year’s) at the Factory and had a whirlwind of activities in-between hosting a few dinner parties -- including our quarterly tenant mixer and potluck, and the annual Blues Bash Fundraising event for Factory Works.

We've been spending more time at the Factory recently and settling into our new studio space nicely (which is a bit bigger and more comfortable than the previous one). Yoga classes at Clearsphere on Saturday mornings have been particularly suited to me as I roll out of bed and walk down the hall to join the other yogi-ites. I also am personally interested in all the opportunities blossoming at the Factory in the fiber arts with our new quilting retail store in Building 6 and the new Community Sewing Lab at Make What You Wear Studio on the second floor of Building 10.

We also have a number of new tenants that have been fun to get to know - including another recent transplant from NYC. We look forward to having visitors anytime (if you give us a heads-up we will make every effort to be there and give you personalize service!!). One small request we have is to help us spread the word to any artists or entrepreneurs you know who might be interested in a large live/work studio space at the factory. We have a few that have just become available (very “New York Style”). We figure word-of-mouth is really the best way to promote opportunities to expand our community.

Wishing everyone a happy, healthy and inspired 2018!

– Susie and Mark

In Focus: Danielle Velkoff

This year we were incredibly lucky to snag Danielle and bring her on board full-time at the Pajama Factory. She joined us from New York City where she had been very involved in theater- producing, directing, and acting in a number of productions while there (and she was stunning in her recent performance in Neil Simon's Rumors at the Community Theater League here in Williamsport).

In NYC she was co-founder and executive director for The Kitchen Riots Festival which brought together three nights of dance, music and theater featuring emerging artists. She also has served as Creative Director for Day One Creative School where she directed and developed a curriculum on managing a career in the arts. Currently, she is founder and artistic director for Purple Threads Ensemble and she manages business development and events at the Factory.

Events: Year in Review

We are a hub of activity all year long. With classes, visiting artists, theater, concerts, performances, workshops, storytelling, yard sales, benefits, fundraisers, movie screenings, bike sales, there is always something going on. The community formed a number of groups (a writers groups and women’s group)   in addition to the groups of friends that have been established.  And we now have “Billtown Bazaar” – a once monthly arts and crafts event.

A few call-outs are noted below:

Summer Artists-in-Residence Program

AiR 2017
For nine years now, the Pajama Factory’s Artist-in-Residence program, a collaboration between Factory Works, the Pajama Factory and Lycoming Arts, has provided opportunities for artists from around the world to join our vibrant creative community to create and be inspired. Each year the program culminates with an exhibition of each participants’ work. This year's theme was We Come From Afar, and featured works in a variety of media, including: sculpture, painting, printmaking, jewelry, and photography. The seven-week residency program included six participants from the local region, as well as others from Nevada and Florida. They worked in our community wood shop and printing studios and utilized the Gallery as a shared workspace. The program continues to be a wonderful way to introduce the Williamsport area to new art from emerging artists from all around the country.

About 30 artists have participated in the Artist-in-Residence program to date, which has seen participants from all around the United States, as well as Germany and the Netherlands.

Kid-friendly Event

The Cyanotype process turns 175 years-old this year!  To celebrate this historic photography process, the Williamsport Community Darkroom hosted a workshop in the Pajama Factory Courtyard, led and instructed by Ralph Wilson.  This kid-friendly event had a great turn out and produced some truly wonderful images

Cyanotype collage

Theater

The creative team and performers of Studio 570 created an immersive and interactive production here at the Pajama Factory that took audience members on journey through Wonderland. From walking through Alice’s tears, running in the Dodo’s caucus race, to sipping tea with the Mad Hatter and the March Hare… it was truly a unique, one-of-a-kind experience.

Studio 570 - Alice in Wonderland cast

6th Annual Blues Bash

And what better way to end the year than with our 6th annual blues bash- great music, dancing and merriment!  (Pictures compliments of our wonderful MC for the night- Rick Mason)

Blues Bash 2017 collage

Construction

Repairs around the building have been continuing as we fix roofs and patch windows and, with the cold weather, make sure pipes don’t burst and heaters are working properly.

Repainting the Lycoming Rubber sign

We have also worked on a few ‘nice-to-haves’ around the building including restoring an original Lycoming Rubber Company sign and even adding some extra’s to our flourishing courtyard (which now has two very prolific peach trees in addition to our growing bed of flowers)…these extras include community games such as a giant Jenga game, a ring-toss game and even a swinging tire over a wonderful sand pit).

In Closing…

“To appreciate the beauty of a snowflake it is necessary to stand out in the cold."

– Aristotle

 

Snowy Courtyard

– Susie and Mark Winkelman