Center Place Fine Arts & Civic Association has been a part of the Brandon community for more than 45 years. One of the community’s favorite parts of Center Place was Pat’s Corner, which was the center’s gift shop.
Pat’s Corner was removed from Center Place and turned into storage and office space. This saddened many people from the community.
When the COVID-19 pandemic hit, Center Place was almost shuttered, which meant that Pat’s Corner would never return. “One of the things I wanted to bring back from Center Place’s past was the gift shop or Pat’s Corner,” said Center Place’s executive director, Libby Hopkins.
Pat’s Corner was named after Pat Odiorne, Center Place’s original executive director. “Pat made sure the gift shop was stocked with art, jewelry, scarves and other fun items,” said Hopkins. “I, too, want to make sure the gift shop is stocked with new and unique gifts as well as art, but I wanted to take it a step further by having only local artists’ works in the shop along with locally made candles, clothing, purses and teas. We are still calling it Pat’s Corner, but it will be considered a local artisan shop.”
Center Place is working with local creators Regalitea, Laura Elderberry, Humadorables by Susan, Hogan Made, DVR Creations, Afribera Shirts and Scented Intentions Candle Company.
“We are also working with ECHO of Brandon,” Hopkins said. “We are excited to offer ECHO’s adorable shoulder bags and mini bags made from clothes that were donated for ECHO.”
Pat’s Corner gives local artist and makers a place to showcase their creative talents. “Keeping thing local and supporting local is extremely important to me,” Hopkins said. “Pat’s Corner is doing two things: it’s helping Center Place have another revenue stream while making the local economy stronger.”
Center Place’s executive board and Hopkins are currently working on Pat’s Corner operating hours.
“We would like to have the store open Monday-Friday for a few hours a day,” Hopkins said. “We are looking to the Brandon community for volunteers to help us run Pat’s Corner and we would love to have some more locally made products available in the shop.”
If you are interested in volunteering at Pat’s Corner during the week or if you’re a local maker who would like to have your items available in the shop, please contact Hopkins at 658-8888. Center Place Fine Arts & Civic Association is located at 619 Vonderburg Dr., Ste. B in Brandon, next to the Brandon Library.