By Kathy L. Collins

What was once just a dream- to have a fully functioning after school program in Riverview- has become a reality with the opening of Art Factory at Winthrop Arts. The Art Factory is unique in that it will not only allow students of all ages and abilities to express their creativity, but it will offer a program that will teach students the elements of art.

The Art Factory began as the brain child of Bryant Martinez, the Winthrop Town Artist, and John and Kay Sullivan, the founders of Winthrop. They sought a safe, fun and creative place for their children to go after school every day. Martinez and the Sullivans developed the Art Factory concept and have been holding classes informally over the past two years. Through the growth of Winthrop Arts, Inc. into a formal 501(c)(3) organization, the Art Factory is expanding into a renovated building with studio space, multiple classrooms and room for up to 60 students.

The Art Factory will be open Mondays from 1:45-6 p.m. and Tuesday through Friday from 3-6 p.m. The cost to attend is $55 per week and includes all supplies. There is a $35 registration fee. The Art Factory is located at 11267 Winthrop Main St. in Riverview.

Teachers at the Art Factory are professional artists and educators who want to pass their knowledge onto the next generation. The Art Factory will offer painting, drawing, sculpture, mixed media, fabrics and more. The Art Factory will allow children to rotate daily so that they experience a variety of arts each week. In addition to these classes, the Art Factory will also offer The Word Shop, a class created and taught by renowned historical author, Doris Weatherford.

Katharine Sullivan-Dawes, the director of everything for Winthrop Arts said, “We see the Art Factory becoming a creative destination for our community with classes happening all the time, not just after school. We also plan to invite artists to come in from all over the country to do special master classes and workshops. We see the Art Factory becoming an important cultural hub.”

For more information on Winthrop Arts and to sign your child up at the Art Factory, visit www.winthroparts.org. Become a part of Winthrop Arts by visiting the generosity campaign and making a donation at bit.ly/2biezZC.