In January of this year, we moved into a 6000+ sf building at 619 Broadway near Central Street. This is such a relief after operating out of, essentially, a glorified two car garage with no heat or air for the past several years. It's an understatement to say I am so excited to be in this new building!
Now we will be able to accept more donations of salvage and offer customers a better retail experience which will mean better fundraising opportunities for Knox Heritage. At the same time, as with any leap in growth, we are incurring new costs, not only with rent, utilities, and insurance, but also with renovations to fit our needs.
To offset these expenses, we want to offer artist studio spaces and a communal woodshop for individuals to rent. I've been managing 17th Street Studios since 2010, and we always have a waiting list of artists so I'm grateful to offer more studio spaces for local artists. There is also not a communal woodshop currently in Knoxville, but as we've shared the prospect of housing one, we know there's a large amount of interest and excitement surrounding the idea.
Short term, we will hold First Friday Art Openings, and down the road, we hope to offer classes and workshops. There is a lot of potential for this space!
Currently, we are in the renovation stage of the building, but we are coming into the home stretch for our Grand Re-Opening which is April 3. (Please come if you can!) We had originally planned to move into the space and fix it up over time to accommodate artists and woodworkers, but it became clear pretty quickly that this would take a lot longer than we thought.
As a result, we've launched a Kickstarter Campaign to raise funds to get this project off the ground sooner. Will you please consider making a pledge to help us move forward more quickly and efficiently? There are all kinds of Rewards for different levels of donations and all donations are tax deductible.
Here is the link to the Kickstarter Project: https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/1158170043/knox-heritage-art-and-salvage-shop-makeover
With these funds, we will be able to better accommodate the artists and woodworkers using the space. We will also be able to provide much needed equipment for our salvage program, such as a trailer, dolly, tools for volunteers, cash register equipment, etc. etc.. You can imagine how much more smoothly this will help our program run if we can provide these things and not have to rely on volunteers for these things.
We have until April 8 to receive $15,000 in pledges. Kickstarter is all or nothing which means we won't receive any donations if we don't reach our goal. Your pledges and you sharing this will make the difference!
On a personal note, I am so grateful to have this opportunity to merge these two things (art + salvage) that I'm passionate about into one place. I've been dreaming of this for many years! Please let me know if you have any questions, please consider giving, and please, help us spread the word on social media.
Thanks so much!
Beth Meadows, Architectural Salvage Coordinator for Knox Heritage