The development of Lucy’s Corner was part of the Lumberyard Arts Center’s strategic goals to develop the facility more fully to serve our mission. Specifically, the new local arts boutique complements our mission in many ways, including:
- Supporting artists through a retail outlet that promotes artist visibility and is of economic benefit to them and Baldwin City.
- Providing a venue of local art for purchase by the LAC visitor.
- Creating a revenue stream to support the projects and activities of the LAC.
- Providing workplace experience to Baker University and USD 348 students.
Planning for the boutique began over a year ago with the formation of “boutique committee” comprised of Janet Anderson-Story, Jeannette Blackmar, Becki Dick, Julie Constantinescu, Meg Cundiff, Melinda Hipple, Mary Ontko and Cindi Thomas. Assistance for best business practices and the formation of business plan was provided by Kristina Mease and Taylor LaRue, KU Small Business Development Center. Led by Janet Anderson-Story, this committee developed artist guidelines for art submissions and researched funding opportunities. The committee applied and successfully received Douglas County Community Foundation funding for window tinting, window stenciling and flooring. Over the winter and spring 2020, new flooring was installed by Doug Cheek, Mike Curran, Samantha Cheek, Sydney Cheek and Donna Curran after the floor was prepped by Marion and Julie Constantinescu. Window tinting was completed by FastSigns, Matt Hernyk, in the early spring. Sunny Allen and Becky Weaver spent two days painting the boutique’s interior late summer. Finally, a day before the opening, September 18, Mike Langhrer, Design Specialties, stenciled the logo on the main window.
In Spring 2020, we welcomed volunteer boutique manager, Dana Mullis, who has been instrumental in developing boutique operations and working with artists. Dana and her husband, Kelsey, also acquired, renovated and transported fixtures to the boutique. During the summer 2020, Dana and Jeannette along with four amazing BJHS and BHS arts apprentices – Alli Cramer, Saylor Currie, Holly Gilliland and Jewel Marsh- developed the boutique’s branding, internal and external marketing and created our boutique aesthetic. The students conducted market research including interviews and analysis. The team also developed the boutique’s name “Lucy’s Corner” from analysis of existing downtown businesses and a wider environmental scan of the activities occurring in Baldwin City. The new development of the adjacent park, Sullivan Square, was considered significant with important positive future relationships and opportunities for the boutique and arts center. Lucy’s Corner was chosen for this relationship with Sullivan Square, the home of Baldwin City’s first female mayor, Lucy Sweet Sullivan. The boutique’s location in the very heart of downtown Baldwin City, makes it ideal to share a piece of Baldwin City’s history with both residents and visitors in addition to the history of the arts center.
The community was invited to a “sneak peek” of the boutique during the September 18 “Live on High – Third Friday Baldwin City” and opened for business the next day. Our goal is to showcase a breadth of local artists and rotate art on a regular basis. Artist bios are available and many artists will provide demonstrations, workshops and/or volunteer in the boutique. We desire Lucy’s Corner a vibrant and welcoming customer experience that embraces our values of community, inclusivity and engagement. In addition, we envision Lucy’s Corner a “learning laboratory” that provides experiential hands-on work experiences for students in USD 348 and Baker University interested in arts, business management and community development.
If you are an artist and would like your work to be considered for our boutique, contact: Jeannette Blackmar and Dana Mullis, firstname.lastname@example.org, 785-594-3186
We hope to meet you in Lucy’s Corner! Hours of operation: Thursday, 3-7 and Saturday, 9-12.