A Consignment Art and Craft Gallery

What the Press has to say about The LeRoy Center for the Creative Arts:

A ‘note’worthy cause

By Ginger Holm, published in the LeRoy Independent for March 3, 2011

Local musicians perform at Creative Arts Center to benefit LeRoy Food shelf

Cowboy Church musicians will perform at the LeRoy Creative Arts Center on March 11, from 7:00 to 9:00 p.m.

The Cowboy Church is a special service held at the Cherry Grove United Methodist Church on the first Sunday of each month at 6:00 p.m. The service is sponsored by the United Methodist Churches in Cherry Grove, Fountain, and Spring Valley. The musicians perform Country, Christian Country, Bluegrass, Country Gospel and Cowboy music.

These talented musicians have graciously volunteered their time to help raise funds and food for the LeRoy Food Shelf.

Marvin Lego, one of the main organizers of this event, made it clear the event is not a church service.

"It's going to be an evening of various musicians jamming and playing country, bluegrass, and gospel tunes,” said Lego, who plays in the LeRoy Road band.

The idea to hold a jam session began with a conversation between Lego and David Perkins, owner of the Creative Arts Center.  Lego presented the idea to the musicians at the Cowboy Church at one of the services a few months ago and they all showed interest. After the New Year, they decided it was time to "make it happen.” 

“The food bank idea came about as we were tossing around the idea of attendance and participation,” said Lego. “My main motivation for this is to try to get community involvement, as well as get the word out to musicians that the Creative Arts Center in LeRoy has a very nice stage and venue for performances that has yet to be fully realized.” 

Lego felt a small fee was reasonable to assist with the costs incurred in using the Creative Arts Center. A $5.00 charge was agreed upon, plus one canned good for the local food bank.

                 Friday's performance will feature:

·         Janine Sherry, who has performed at The Flame Nightclub in Minneapolis, Channel 9 TV, Minneapolis, and KANO Radio, Anoka, Minn.

She has performed in many stage shows, including RFD TV Midwest Country, and appeared on shows with Box Car Willie, Hank Thompson, Sherwin Linton, Don Gibson, Rusty and Doug Kershaw, Stonewall Jackson, Bill Monroe, Marvin Rainwater and many others.

Sherry sang a duet with Webb Pierce at the premier of one of his movies. She has also made a guest appearance on the Ernest Tubb Midnight Jamboree, downtown Broad, Nashville, Tenn., appeared on WSM Saturday Morning Opry, Nashville, and the NTCMA show in Iowa.

·         Barb Mosher, whose whole life has been filled with music. She has taken guitar, piano and accordion lessons, and continues to do so. In her younger years, she played with Roy Lillie and the Little Green Valley Gang on Austin, Minn. TV every Saturday night and later played with the Lyle Horseman Band.

In recent years, she has taken up the pedal steel guitar, which she plays once a month at Cowboy Church in Cherry Grove. Mosher also plays at nursing homes and other activities. The pedal steel guitar is her favorite instrument.

“[The steel pedal guitar] is what I will be playing at the LeRoy show,” said Mosher. “I hope to see you there, as it is a show you will not want to miss."

·         Steve Arnold and Walter Bradley have been singing and playing in churches and many other venues, including dance halls, parades and festivals, for over 40 years and still enjoy it immensely. They began performing together about three years ago. Bradley really enjoys Mandy (his Mandolin) and Arnie (his guitar). Arnold likes to do rhythm picking and singing. They enjoy playing country, bluegrass, gospel, 50s and old-time music.

·         Cindy Seabright and Leonard Leutink started singing together eight years ago. Music has always been a part of each of their lives throughout the years. Both have taken lessons and worked with Barb Mosher. They enjoy singing duets on gospel and classic country songs, touching the hearts and bringing smiles to those who come to hear them. Much in demand at various venues in Fillmore County, they are frequent performers at their local church, Cowboy Church, area nursing homes, weddings, funerals and fund raisers, as well as performing at the Minnesota Horse Expo. They are currently getting ready to cut their second CD together, this one featuring gospel music.

·         The Jones Boys consists of father, Rich and son, Michael. Rich plays guitar, banjo, and fiddle and Michael plays bass (with a standup bass about twice as tall as he is) and drums.

·         Gaye Stockdale has been singing and visiting rest homes in the area with LeRoy Road and has always been a local favorite, participating in many local events.

·         Two members of the LeRoy Road band, Marvin Lego and Arlen Sloan, will also be taking part in this event. Performing at many area events, the LeRoy Road is well known throughout the area.

All of these musicians have played at the Cowboy Church. According to Lego, Rev. Mark Rader is the individual who had the vision to form the Cowboy Church in this area and has been the energy and driving force behind it.

Rader will be the MC for the evening. When asked about the music for this particular event at the last Cowboy Church service, he responded, "This is where they will play the songs I don't let them play [at church].”

Rader, who sings and plays guitar, also be performing on Friday.


Art in the county

Published 4:50pm Saturday, October 9, 2010 in the Austin Daily Herald.

By Jason Schoonover

Rita and Jon Hiller, of LeRoy, peruse the LeRoy Center of the Creative Arts. - Eric Johnson/photodesk@austindailyherald.com

The Austin Area Art Center isn’t the only place for artists to display and sell their art in Mower County.

The LeRoy Center of the Creative Arts opened in June of 2009 as a spot for artists to sell their work on consignment. The center features both a retail store and an auditorium. The lower level features pieces from about 30 different vendors selling a vast variety of items including glass work, paintings, photographs, woodwork, needlework, vinyl dolls and jewelry.

“I wanted a variety and I wanted local,” said owner David Perkins. “The intent of this is to promote the local and regional arts.”

Perkins moved to LeRoy about seven years ago after being attracted to the community by favorable real estate prices. At first, he traveled to a number of craft shows, but he said there was something missing.

“I had the impression there was a lot of talent here — it wasn’t really getting out and into the world very well, so I thought I’d start this,” he said.

With LeRoy more than 30 miles from the nearest art gallery in places like Austin and Rochester, Perkins said the art scene in LeRoy lacked a real driving factor.

David Perkins, the owner of The LeRoy Center for the Creative Arts is hoping the center will be more than just his place. - Eric Johnson/photodesk@austindailyherald.com

A number of artists were active through craft shows in the past, but Perkins said he didn’t think there was a focus in town.

Now local artists have a way to display their work. Since the center opened, the response has been very enthusiastic.

“Everybody like the idea of having an art gallery in a small town, and people start coming out of the wood work so to speak to have their stuff here,” he said.

Perkins works Monday through Wednesday at the Mayo Clinic as an escort and then he operates the LeRoy Center for the Creative Arts Thursday through Saturday.

Perkins bought the old Uptown Club and replaced the roof and added an apartment. After seeing other art galleries that incorporated a successful concert hall, he decided to add one to the second floor.

“It’s turned out to be a very, very nice auditorium,” he said.

Perkins first discovered his interest in glass work as a senior in high school in 1965. After school, Perkins frequently went to watch a glass artist make a large glass ship.

He soon after was able to take an unopened glass working kit from a teacher to start making the sculptures on his own.

While he did some glass work for science laboratories, he soon found a store willing to buy his pieces. He’d later begin traveling to craft shows to sell his glass work.

Montana Hensley, 10, shapes glass for a pendant while down at the LeRoy Creative Arts Center. The art center not only displays art and crafts by others, but serves to highlight things like this as well as the performing arts. - Eric Johnson/photodesk@austindailyherald.com

For about 15 years, Perkins kept the torch off as he focused his priorities on having a family. He would later come back to glass work since he called it his “first love.”

“It’s the art medium that I do well and enjoy,” he said.

The glass work typically involves heating glass and shaping into marbles, pendants and even sculptures.

Though it’s an intricate process, Perkins said he can now build a small ship in about 10 minutes and a large one in about an hour.

Recently, Perkins has looked to spread his love for glass making. Perkins works with a number of students to teach them the art of glass making.

One of those students, Harley MacIntyre, is even selling his glass pendants at the center.

“I just like it when I get to go on the torch and make the pendants,” MacIntyre said.

Perkins had often thought about starting a store to sell his pieces, and now that dream is a reality.

“It’s broader than just Dave’s place,” he said. “I want it to be more than just Dave’s glass shop.”

The LeRoy Center for the Creative Arts is open Thursday, Friday and Saturday from 10 a.m. to 6:30 p.m. at 111 E. Main Street, LeRoy.