Winter Wonderland

A Winter Wonderland Days Art Camp will be held Dec. 28 through 30 at Bottle Works in the Cambria City section of Johnstown. The three-day camp will be filled with winter-themed activities, including creating lighted ornaments, kinetic snow and snow-inspired treats.

An array of holiday-themed events will bring a cheery, festive atmosphere to Bottle Works.

Melody Tisinger, Bottle Works’ director of operations and advancement, said activities planned through December are a way to connect with the community and provide a sense of togetherness.

“We want to make sure the community knows that we are a hub for them during these hard times and can be an escape for them to visit,” she said. “We want to provide activities and do it in a safe manner.”

The season kicks off with the return of the annual Small Works juried exhibition that will be on display through Jan. 2 at Bottle Works, 411 Third Ave. in the Cambria City section of Johnstown. It showcases a selection of artwork from regional artists that can be purchased.

Featured artists

The featured artists are Brandon Hirt, photography; Ken Robb, glasswork; Dan Eash, pottery; Marie Young, clay sculpture; Rebecca Lynn, pastel paintings; and Carol Churchey, fiber/quilting.

“The annual Small Works juried exhibition is an opportunity for artists to engage with the community just in time for the holiday shopping season,” said Matt Lamb, Bottle Works’ creative director.

“Small Works gives the customer a chance to purchase handcrafted, unique pieces at an affordable price. This allows us to make artwork accessible to a larger group of people who are looking to bring original work into their homes.”

A virtual gallery along with pricing is available at

“This is a deeper reveal of the talent that’s in our community,” Tisinger said.

“For the artist who may not be selected for a larger show during the course of our exhibition year, this is one way they can participate.”

Merry Maker’s Market

Bottle Works will spread holiday cheer with its Merry Maker’s Market that will be held Friday through Dec. 23, and it will feature more than 20 vendors.

The shop has been part of the Bottle Works’ seasonal offerings for the past several years, providing a variety of artisan goods from wool and alpaca outerwear to handcrafted jewelry. 

This year, the Merry Maker’s Market will welcome three new vendors – Bonnie Samms-Overly, of Bo’s Fiber Art, with fiber and mixed media; Caitlin Vinner, of Cait Creations, with prints and paintings; and Deborah Brassell, of Redefined & Co., with handmade soaps and aromatherapy beauty and wellness line.

“Bottle Works is a long-standing community asset for creators, and I really wanted to be a part of what they are doing,” Brassell said.

“By being a part of the Merry Maker’s Mart, I am able to offer quality goods to the community that not only smell and feel good, but are beneficial to the mind, body and soul.”

Online holiday shop

Items from the Merry Maker’s Mart will be selected to be featured in the online holiday shop. Different items will be spotlighted daily on Bottle Works’ social media platforms.

Curbside pickup will be available for online purchases.

Gallery Shoppe hours are 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Tuesdays, 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. Wednesdays through Fridays and 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturdays.

To add to the fun, an ugly sweater and last-minute shopping event will be held Dec. 17 with extended Gallery Shoppe hours until 9 p.m.

Beginning at 6 p.m., there will be music and complimentary refreshments along with games.

“This is an opportunity for a little bit of stress relief and to safely gather together and let your hair down,” Tisinger said.

Winter art camp

For children ages 6 to 12, Bottle Works will offer its Winter Wonderland Days Art Camp from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Dec. 28 through 30.

Campers will use their artistic, scientific, engineering, recycling and athletic skills to create a blizzard of excitement.

The three days will be filled with winter-themed activities such as creating lighted ornaments, kinetic snow and snow-inspired treats. In addition, campers will enjoy a variety of indoor winter games, including an indoor snowball fight.

“These are activities that are science and art related,” Tisinger said. “This is a nice way for kids to be with their peers over the holiday break.”

Cost is $32 for one day or $85 for three days for members, or $35 for one day or $95 for three days for nonmembers. 

Children must be pre-registered by Dec. 20.

Those attending will have their temperature taken and face masks are required. Hand sanitizer stations will be set up throughout the building.

Throughout the holiday season, Bottle Works Giving Tree will be set up in the Arts Works Gallery.

Personalized ornaments

With a monetary contribution, donors can place a personalized ornament on the tree, and the funds will benefit Bottle Works’ youth camps and education programs.

In addition to the Giving Tree, Bottle Works has a wish list posted on its website, detailing the supplies needed to make youth art education programs possible.

“Bottle Works awards nearly $5,000 in scholarships each year,” said Tisinger.

“As the demand for our programs grows, we want to make sure that any youth that has a desire to create and explore their artistic talents have the means to do so, but we need the support of business leaders and community members.”

Scholarship donations also can be made through the Bottle Works website.

Tisinger said programs and activities are contingent on public safety.

“If we don’t feel like it’s going to be safe, we will have alternative things that will be planned virtually where we can still engage folks,” she said.

For a complete schedule of activities, call 814-535-2020 or visit

Kelly Urban is a reporter for The Tribune-Democrat. She can be reached at (814) 532-5073. Follow her on Twitter @KellyUrban25.

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