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A unique art show benefitting young girls in Haiti is coming to Lancaster city. “For the Girls,” is an empowering evening of art dedicated to help raise money to purchase a new home for the girls at St. Francis Xavier Orphanage in Petite Riviere, Haiti. The event—held at Moira Lazarus Records and Juice Bar (112 West Orange Street)—will feature the eclectic work of local female artists, a raffle of local arts and goods, interactive art work, refreshments, an opportunity to engage with the story of the orphanage, a live DJ, and more.

Co-organized by local ladies Erika Firestone and Ashley Cleaver, the event will take place on September 9, 2017 from 6 to 10pm.

“This show has a global impact,” Erika says. “The money raised for the eight girls at the SFX orphanage will not only ensure they have a roof over their heads, but will also provide them with the safety and stability needed to continue their studies and work toward their dreams.”

There is a video on the event page of a young girl named Nadia singing and dancing. Another photograph depicts Berline, a young woman wise beyond her years whose dream is to become the president of Haiti. In the meantime, she is dedicated to her school work and enjoys dancing.

“‘For the Girls’ is a collaborative movement created by Erika and myself that has been fueled by the Lancaster community,” Ashley says. “We are raising money to provide not only housing, but to guarantee that each young girl at SFX orphanage is able to pursue her passions to the fullest which in turn helps guarantee a thriving future for generations to follow.”

Admission to “For the Girls” includes refreshments and various forms of entertainment for $20. The evening will include raffles from Maejean Vintage Jewelry, Cocoa Kayaking Float Yoga of Lancaster, Pennsylvania Renaissance Faire, Passenger Coffee, and more. Rijuice will provide cocktails. And Ninkasi Brewing will provide craft beer.

Featured artists include Ashley Cleaver (photographer), Emily Truman (collage artwork and an opportunity for guests to create their own collage), Emily Lockley (ceramics), Meg Yoder (prints), Lauren Beauchner (oil painting), Ellie Miller (painting), and Christi Albert (organic skincare and healing tinctures).

Contact Information:

Erika Firestone
(717) 202-5129

Ashley Cleaver
(717) 926-8429

Yesterday, I had the privilege of experiencing the Yayoi Kusama exhibit at the Hirshorn in Washington, D.C.

Knowing next to nothing about Kusama, her artwork, or the nature of the exhibit and what it showcased, we decided to take an adventure. Literally the only thing I knew about the exhibit was that a visitor recently destroyed one of her thin, hollow, plastic polka-dotted pumpkins while taking a selfie. (That’s a whole other topic that I witnessed yesterday which I may decide to discuss as a side note at the end of this blog.)

We left Lancaster for an overnight stay about 30 minutes outside of downtown Washington, D.C. The next morning, the alarm clock went off at 5am and off we went, aiming to reach the Hirshorn at 6am. Through overhearing discussions once we stepped in line (behind 60 other people bundled in blankets and coats in the 55 degree weather), I discovered that only 700 free passes would be given to those in line and they wouldn’t start giving them out until 10am. Thankfully, we packed plenty of books to read, sketchbooks to draw in, Yahtzee, fruit, and water to drink.

All of my assumptions about this exhibit were completely and utterly wrong, guys. Aside from the expectation of bewilderment as a result of staring at endless polkadots, I had literally no idea what I was getting into.

You see, I honestly thought we would be free to enter the so-called “infinity mirror” rooms freely with the freedom to walk out of one and into the other. But Kusama had a different intention entirely. The infinity mirror rooms are enclosed in box-like structures with a door that opens and shuts. Basically, you wait in line with whomever you’ve come to visit the Hirshorn with. When it’s your turn to view one of the five infinity rooms, a staff member opens the door, allows you to enter, and shuts the door behind you for either 20 or 30 seconds. There,  you stand in silence and awe looking at the objects inside (lights, glowing pumpkins, pink polka dotted balls). The box is coated in mirrors and gives the feeling that the objects go on forever and ever and ever and ever.

There were several different feelings which popped up for me personally. The first and most apparent was that of voyeurism. We all have gone to art exhibitions and looked at artwork, but have you ever been met with your reflection? In the infinity mirror rooms, you are met with the image of your self as you turn and look into an imaginary abyss of infinite lights. It was almost uncomfortable at times watching myself, jaw open, in awe.

But this caused me to be completely present. The lines—which seemed to take forever with a grumbling tummy—seemed to last forever. A lot of wonderful conversation was had in each line as we waited for those 20 to 30 precious experiential moments. It was truly amazing. It taught patience and presence, and was full of illumination and voyeuristic qualities which only brought it back to feeling present again.

I have never experienced an exhibit quite like Yayoi Kusama’s. The themes that intricately wove themselves throughout the Hirshorn were incredibly relevant in today’s digitally connected—and therefore existentially disconnected—world which we experience everyday through our phones and computers. It was refreshing and revitalizing.

Thank you for reading! I hope local artists can revisit these themes in their artwork so we can all have similar experiences!


Yayoi Kusama
Yayoi Kusama at Hirshorn


Makers of all ages: mark your calendars for Saturday, May 6!

MakerShift—a public celebration of makers of all ages and abilities from across the Capital Region and Central PA—will be showing off their innovative and creative projects in the areas of Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts and Math (S.T.E.A.M.)! MakerShift pulls together makers in an effort to make a collective impact on the places we live and work.

Every hour on the hour from 10am to 2pm, hear special speakers give lightning talks (about 10-15 minutes each) about S.T.E.A.M. trends in themed venues followed by fun and engaging project demos! Venues are in easy walking distance along 3rd Street in Midtown Harrisburg, PA.  Bring along friends and family to learn about making and talk with local makers.  MakerShift is for all ages!

FAQ About This Event:

Who? MakerShift 2017 is composed of regional makers, local volunteers, community leaders, and select vendors who gather together to celebrate making and the intersection of Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts and Math (S.T.E.A.M.)

What? MakerShift is a celebration of makers throughout the Capital Region. While some select vendors and professionals are invited to participate , MakerShift seeks to recognize the work of amateurs who tinker and create for the love of it.

When? MakerShift 2017 will be held between 9am and 3pm on Saturday, May 6th.

Where? MakerShift 2017 will take place Midtown Harrisburg on 3rd Street between StartUP Harrisburg and Susquehanna Art Museum.

Participating venues include:
• Startup HBG: Tech Venue
• Harrisburg Midtown Arts Center (HMAC): Engineering Venue
• Historic Harrisburg Association (HHA): Math Venue
• Midtown Scholar Bookstore and Cafe : Science Venue
• Susquehanna Arts Museum: Arts Venue
• Broad Street Market: General Venue

Why? While the Maker Movement has received national attention it still is largely unknown to the general public. MakerShift aims to raise local awareness through the celebration of local makers while shifting conversations and thinking toward education for 21st Century life and work.

How? A one day celebration will be held where local makers, volunteers, community leaders, and vendors gather together to share their work with the general public. In addition to having the opportunity to engage local makers and learn about their work, the public will also hear from experts who will give lightning talks and demonstrate new technology. Information and resources will also be shared on where to go for further info and involvement.

Find out more information online at:

Opening Spring ArtWalk weekend, on May 5th Red Raven Art Company will host a new show titled Lancaster, A Love Letter. The show will feature work by local woodburner and painter Jenny Germann.  Germann will exhibit many of her unique burnings/painting on wood throughout the month of May. The exhibition will focus on a variety of Germann’s favorite locations and experiences in Lancaster—including work featuring the recent vigils and protests taking place around the city.

Most of Germann’s work is created through woodburning.  She uses torches and pyrography machines to capture her vision and to create distinct line qualities on wood. By using a this method, she is able to create imagery, texture, and depth in her work by burning directly into the wood.  After the woodburning is finished, she adds evocative color with inks, watercolor, or acrylic.

“My work is based on locations that hold significance in my life. I use landscapes and portraits to convey experiences, often drawing influence from my daily observations while living in Lancaster City.”

Germann lives and works in Lancaster PA.  She earned her BFA from the University of Kansas and an MS from Eastern University.  She is married to local cabinetmaker/furniture designer Evan Germann and together, they have 2 dogs.



What: Jenny Germann – woodburner and painter (

What: Feature art exhibition, Lancaster, A Love Letter

When: Opening May 5th,  show will be up through May 31, 2017

Where: Red Raven Art Company, downtown Lancaster


For more images / information, contact:

Jenny Germann – 717.283.6543 /


Through a collaboration partnership between Building Character and The Candy Factory, these two local companies will be hosting the second annual Literary Festival during Spring Art Walk. This year, a Harry Potter themed festival will take over the Market Street parking lot and Warehouse D inside The Candy Factory on Saturday, May 6th from 11am to 2pm.


The Literary Festival occurs in celebration of the Little Free Library placed outside of The Candy Factory last year. This year’s family friendly party will benefit a charity through Church World Services and will include light refreshments, Harry Potter-themed games, live music, circus acts, various activities, and opportunities to donate to the selected charity.


Live music will be provided by local bands, Talk Alliance and Hilltop Gamblers. Henna tattoos and face painting (of various complexities and pricing) will be provided by Alicia Lyter, as well as Harry Potter-themed caricatures by Cory Lally. Local collage artist, Emily Truman, will have a community collage project for all to partake in. Emma Cate will be doing $6 tarot readings, and The Circus School of Lancaster will be dazzling the crowd with humor and entertainment. Homemade butterbeer will be available for purchase as well.


Dress-up is highly encouraged. For more information, please e-mail Emily Truman at



Things To Do Lancaster caught up with one of the cutest couples in Lancaster—Emily Moccero and Evan Young of The Velveteen Stabit.

Emily and Evan accumulated quite a collection of lapel pins and in an attempt to display them, they came up with velvet-lined cork boards—thus the name “Velveteen Stabit.” After making a few of the corkboards, they looked into designing their own pins to go along with the boards. However, the pin sales really took off and they realized they enjoyed designing the pins that they kept on keeping on!

Things To Do Lancaster: What style would you say your pins are?
The Velveteen Stabit: We try to design things that we want to wear, and since there are two of us, our style is a little schizophrenic; both of our personalities show throughout our line. A few of our pins feature various types of wings which are inspired from different vintage auto/moto logos, and some of our designs have elements which are more inspired by fantasy. All of our designs have clean and simple lines and can be appreciated by a range of audience. We feel that our unique sources of inspiration are a good representation of who we are as people, and as a result, who we are as a brand.

TTDL: Is there anything special about the quality of materials?
TVS: As far as materials go, theres not too much to it – metal and colored enamel (enamel is essentially glass in this context). However, something to note is that the majority of enamel pins in our class are manufactured overseas, but we make sure that ours are 100% made in USA. We’re proud of that!
TTDL: Tell me how you create a pin from start to finish.
TVS: It all starts out with an idea. Sometimes we have long brainstorming sessions and other times a good idea will just randomly pop into one of our heads. After the idea is agreed on, we discuss how it should look and do some rough sketches. It is then translated into Adobe Illustrator where it is made into a vector file. Here is when we do all the fine-tuning on the designs and pick colors and size. The finished design is then sent to our USA manufacturer. While we are waiting on production (about a month), we design our packaging card.  Once we have the physical pin in hand we can do our product photography, online store listings, and some social media marketing.  Taking great photos and showing off our pins (marketing) are the biggest part of the “job” and it’s a lot of fun.
Additionally, The Velveteen Stabit also has a huge stock of amazing vintage pins and brooches available on their website. “We have so much fun finding them at flea markets and antique stores— it really makes for an exciting day!” Certain Saturdays in the summer are reserved for “flea market dates.” They also don’t just sell pins—they’ve got a range of patches and hats, and have recently started collaborations with other local Lancaster artists to design bandanas and pins as well.

Featured image from The Pottery Works.

WE LOVE POTTERY WORKS! If you’re looking for a really cool way to spend an evening, need a new birthday party theme idea, or simply need some time to yourself in a vibrant space, head to The Pottery Works in historic downtown Lancaster.

The paint-your-own pottery studio is owned by Marcie Natale, who opened the shop 14 years ago in 2003. Marcie also owns sister stores The Gem Den and The Bead Works also located in downtown Lancaster.

Perhaps the coolest part about The Pottery Works is their discount calendar. Every day they’re open, they offer a different type of discount, like a Ladies Night where all pieces are 15% off for ladies, or lunch specials where all pieces are 20% off. You can pick up one of their monthly calendars at the counter. From piggy banks, to knick knacks, to full dinner sets, to cookie jars, we are positive you’ll find something you’ll be excited to paint—and within your price range!

BROWNIE POINTS: You can BYOB, BYO snacks, and pieces are available for pick-up just one week after you complete them! They also offer painting classes.

The Pottery Works
IG: @thepotteryworks


Have you always wanted to live in simple elegance and luxury?

The Keppel Building is finishing up their big project, which we’ve sure you’ve had your eyes on while embarking through one of the most popular blocks in Lancaster City: the 300 block of North Queen. Centered at the heart of Lancaster’s vibrant and urban core, you will experience historical charm meeting modern comfort—where they collide to create a fresh and sophisticated living experience.

Each one- and two-bedroom apartment features modern architecture, stylish interiors, and high-quality amenities. Prices range from $865 to $2375 per month, offering unmatched comfort and convenience. They even have two commercial spaces still available! Keep your eyes peeled for updates.

This is a project between Hometown Property Management, PPM Real Estate, and Zamagias Properties.

The chill is coming, and it’s time to bundle up the most precious of all: our children!

Bellaboo is stocked and ready in both their physical store and online! Bellaboo is a huge fan of Obermeyer Ski Clothing and Outerwear, and they are fully stocked with everything from snowsuits, to jackets, to gloves, to hats, and scarves. Obermeyer was established in 1947 when Klaus Obermeyer made his first ever ski parka—and they have been committed to innovation, technology, and quality ever since. Nowadays, Obermeyer produces some of the most high-tech ski clothing known to man. Bellaboo stands behind this brand and their quality products! With Obermeyer clothing and outerwear, your children will forget they’re cold—they’ll be able to focus on snowball fights, building igloos, and sledding through the fluffy snow.

Bellaboo, both in the shop and online, features Obermeyer’s sleekest and colorful designs for kids, and in multiple color options.

Obermeyer Snoverall Pant
Made of 100% polyster mini-twill with HydroBlock waterproof breathable lamination and DuroGuard DWR, these precious snoveralls will keep your child warm and comfortable out in the blustery snow. They have reinforced seat and knees, a reflective zipper pull, and fleece-lined hand warming pockets, too! Other features include: reinforced inseams/hems, double layer reinforcement, “I-Grow”™ Extended Wear System, an elastic waistband, heavy-duty YKK zippers, and water-resistant powder cuffs.
Available in four (4) colors, sizes 1 through 8.

Obermeyer Averee Knit Hat
How cute is this hat? Not only is this 100% chunky knit acrylic hat aesthetically pleasing, it’s also fully microfleece-lined. A little pom-pom finishes off this adorable hat! Fact: children lose more heat through their head than adults, so it’s very important to keep their noggins nice and warm!

Obermeyer Gauntlet Gloves
These gloves come in sizes X-Small to Medium. With a reinforced palm, thumb, a zippered heater pack pocket, and even an integrated nose wipe (!!), these are an essential to keep your little one warm while they build their glorious snow castles. The integrated heater pouch pocket allows you to add chemically enhanced heat packets, which are a must on cold days. These gloves are lined with highly breathable microfleece fabric, which is used to create a quick reacting breathable lining while carrying the thermal advantages of fleece insulation.

Obermeyer Trina Jacket
The Trina jacket uses exclusive HydroBlock® Sport 10,000mm waterproof/breathable technology. It has a removable hood, shaped seams for fit, and premium insulation to assure ultimate warmth. This jacket also features the exclusive ‘I-Grow’™ Extended Wear System, which has built-in technology to increase sleeve length by 1 ½ inches. Comes in sizes 2, 3, 4, 5, and 8!

These are just a FEW of the incredible Obermeyer brand products that Bellaboo carries.
You can shop for more in the store (32 North Queen Street) or online at:

Untitle111d-1From fresh fruit smoothies to organic coffee, teas and elixirs, Skinny Park Juice offers a wonderful assortment of wholesome menu items. Their large selection of cafe delicacies — house made salads, multigrain wraps, gluten-free breads — has kept the Things To Do Lancaster team coming back for more!

“Our mission is to offer a menu of healthy food and beverages that does not contain processed or artificial ingredients,” said Owner, Carol Cambell.

Since 2013, Skinny Park Juice has served Lancaster’s West End.

“We are coming up on a two-year anniversary and have been wanting to give back to the community that has supported us,” continued Cambell.

“Each month we are adopting a local nonprofit to whom we donate a percentage of that month’s bottled juice sales.”

Skinny Park Juice is currently supporting The Common Wheel, a local community bike center. During October, Skinny Park Plans to host The Boys and Girls Club Jack Walker Clubhouse.

A popular destination for Franklin and Marshall College students, Skinny Park Juice offers a relaxing and WiFi-equipped setting for quiet reading, studying or hanging out with friends.

“Our customers come from all walks of life,” says Cambell. “Being healthy is universal!”

Visit Skinny Park Juice for a variety of green juice, fruit, vegetable juice and other healthy menu items. For more information, including a full breakfast, lunch and dinner menu, please visit Skinny Park Juice online at:

Relax, recharge and reinvigorate!