Now that the holidays are over and the resolutions have long-since fallen by the wayside, you may be looking for something fun to do, and maybe some delicious cookies to help you get through until spring returns. It’s the perfect time for the 2nd annual SweetheART art auction and cookie walk at the Mantua Center School (11741 Mantua Center Road).
Just like last year’s festivities, the event takes place shortly before Valentine’s Day on February 9th, giving you the opportunity to stroll the historic hallways with your sweetie, bid on silent auction art and craft items, and, of course, custom-select your own dozen or two of assorted homemade cookies. Doors open at noon that day, with a live-auction of artwork taking place around 1 pm.
Not only is it a great reason to get out and enjoy the arts close to home, it also provides the opportunity to help a worthy cause, since the event proceeds will support the efforts of the Mantua Restoration Society and their Task Force for the Community Center. Last year’s event raised over $5,000.
If you’re interesting in helping this year’s event as more than an attendee, the SweetheArt Auction has plenty of opportunities. While the group has received donations of artwork from local artisans including decorative woodcarvings and paintings, as well as glass and ceramic pieces, they’re still accepting donations of other items that they classify as ‘whimsies’. Items like tufa yard decorations, crocheted afghans, wooden furniture, or paintings would be welcome donations.
Last year, event-goers bid on a multitude of mini art quilts; festive pieced works ranging in size from nine inches by 12 inches to as large as roughly 18 inches square. “Last year, we had a make-a-quilt day at one of the Tuesday gatherings at Mantua Center School,” explained one of the event’s organizers, Carole Pollard. “After having seen the weekly quilters working diligently on traditional patterns, I was completely surprised and charmed by the off-beat, unconventional things they came up with.”
If your artistic efforts are expressed through culinary arts, event organizers are accepting donations of your favorite cookies. According to Ms. Pollard, the only requirement is that they be “kind of tidy to eat, not gooey or so delicate that they fall apart.“ Several hundred dozen cookies were sold at last year’s event; the area’s best bakers will ensure that this year’s offering will be equally delicious.
In addition to cookies and silent auctions throughout the building, the main event is the live auction, where more substantial art pieces will be available. The pieces range from jewelry to high quality crafts, ceramics, photography, and painting. “This is an opportunity to acquire a piece of original art–or to donate something that you loved when you bought it but that has been in a closet for a while because you bought something else that you love,” explained Ms. Pollard.
Donations will be accepted on Saturday, February 3rd at the Civic Center from 10 am until 2 pm. If that time is not convenient, contact Carole at (330) 274-0118 to make special arrangements.
Rounding out the event will be some good old homemade comfort food, courtesy of the Restoration Society Food Crew. Items like macaroni and cheese, cabbage and noodles, and pulled pork are usually crowd-pleasers.
“The purpose of these efforts is to continue to help the trustees by providing funds to assist with the renovation of historic buildings and sites in the township, and to give the Task Force for a Community Center much-needed operating funds, “ Ms. Pollard explained. The money will be used to set up a business structure and forge an agreement with the township for the use and management of the historic structure.
If you’re interested in helping the event run smoothly, an organizational meeting will be held on Monday, January 22nd at 7 pm at the Mantua Center Christian Church. For more information, visit the Restoration Society online at or call Carole Pollard at (330) 274-0118.