The Artisans’ Guild invites the public to celebrate its 20th anniversary at 5 p.m. Friday, Oct. 4, at 148 Main St. in Oneonta.
The party is free and there will be wine, snacks and live music, said Deborah Blake, manager and executive director of the Artisans’ Guild. Artists from the cooperative’s past and present will be there and local musician Jeff Syman will play. Brewery Ommegang will be donating beer, Blake said.
“This is just our way of sharing our celebration with our wonderful customers and the people who have kept us on Main Street for 20 years,” Blake said. “We are inviting people to join us in celebrating the success of something that was important to the town, the artists and community and we want to show our appreciation for everyone who helped to make us successful.”
Blake, who co-founded the cooperative along with Ellie Stromberg 20 years ago, said Artisans’ Guild started out with 30 artists and has grown over the years to 50. The year before founding the cooperative, Blake and Stromberg held a pop-up to see if there would be enough interest, then formally opened the Artisans’ Guild in 1999. The cooperative has been very well-received from the start, Blake said.
People can buy pottery, stained and blown glass, wooden items, jewelry, soap, chocolate and much more at the Artisans’ Guild, she said. All artists are local or regional and they have a say in the running of the nonprofit cooperative shop.
The Artisans’ Guild is staffed and run by the artists themselves. The store gives 88% of all sales directly to the artists and keeps the remaining 12% to cover expenses.
For information on how to join the Artisans’ Guild, visit http://theartisansguildoneonta.com/?page_id=84
“We have always been a cooperative,” she said. “Our goal was to be by the artists and for the artists.”
Shweta Karikehalli, staff writer, can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or 607-441-7221. Follow her @DS_ShwetaK on Twitter.