The Van Wert County Courthouse

Monday, Aug. 8, 2022

Warm Up the Ridge fundraiser successful

Clothing, blankets, and space heaters from the Warm Up the Ridge project arrived at Pine Ridge Reservation in South Dakota on December 28, just ahead of a winter storm. As you can see from the photos, this project is growing and required a full semi-truck to haul it all. Thanks to everyone who donated, we were able to send 100 electric fireplaces, 35 space heaters, 16 pallets of blankets and warm clothing, and four pallets of fabric. 

Crews at Pine Ridge Reservation in South Dakota unload items donated through the Warm Up the Ridge project organized by the Wassenberg Art Center

Brent and Vicki Stevens, owners of our Faces of Little Bighorn Collection, and I will be traveling to Pine Ridge in January to follow up and brainstorm some ideas we’ve had rolling around. Again, thank you to all who have contributed, gathered and coordinated. Warm coats, blankets and space heaters are gathered annually for the Lakota tribe who live on this reservation. We do this because staying warm, and in some cases alive in the brutal Dakota winters can be extremely difficult for Pine Ridge residents due to the isolation and extreme poverty.

Remember, students can sign up for our ArtReach after school art program any month and stop if schedules become hectic then sign up again when convenient! With cooped up winter coming on, art can be a great outlet! This art program also provides much needed support in the arts which assist a myriad of academics, like improved math and critical thinking skills. Our instructor Gabriel Yahl is a, professional artist and art educator. Gabriel obtained a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree from prestigious Columbus College of Art & Design in Fine Art. Gabriel has worked as a painting, cartooning, and art instructor, at CCAD in addition to sculpture lab assistant. He has 10-plus years of painting experience and has worked with children in varying scenarios including 4-H and camp counseling. He has also worked at galleries and the Columbus Museum of Art. We are looking forward to being able to provide area young artists with a creative outlet. Please contact the art center to sign up, scholarships available.

Sign up anytime for the gift that keeps on giving. The Wassenberg Art Center helps fill the gaps in art programming in a convenient way. The wassenBox is a home delivery craft kit for young people. Each month, the in-house designed kit comes with complete supplies, a welcome sticker poster and a specially designed activity book unique to each kit. Crafts for two separate age groups are available, ages 3-7 and 7 and up. Kits are designed as gender neutral. Families are very busy and now art can now come to you. Sign up anytime at $22 per month. wassenBox automatically renews until you cancel. To sign up, visit or call 419.238.6837.

The Wassenberg Art Center provides custom designed art, craft and creative classes and parties for private groups. Need a unique party option? Give us a call. What do you all want to make? Contact us and we will brainstorm your next gathering for original experiences.

Watercolor Class: Tuesday mornings; 10 a.m.-noon. Fee: $55 Regular, $40 WAC member cost. Instructor: Pat Rayman. 

Intermediate Stained Glass: This three-week class will delve more in depth in the art of stained glass. Several project options are available. January 8, 15, 22: 6-9 p.m. Fee: $55 WAC members cost, $65 Regular price. Instructor: Joe Balyeat.

ArtNight: Every Thursday 6-9 p.m. Free. Artist/instructors on hand to help with your project.

Pint Nights: Every fourth Thursday 6-9 p.m. Free entry, craft beer or wines and live music.

Wassenberg Art Center is located at 214 S. Washington St. (former Van Wert Armory). We can also be reached by telephone at 419.238.6837 or email at

POSTED: 01/06/20 at 7:43 am. FILED UNDER: What's Up at Wassenberg?