The Sun News

Georgia Artisan Center showcases handcrafted gifts, books and more for visitors and locals

The Georgia Artisan Center is located at the E.L. Greenway Welcome Center in the historic train depot across from Robins Air Force Base.
The Georgia Artisan Center is located at the E.L. Greenway Welcome Center in the historic train depot across from Robins Air Force Base.

The Georgia Artisan Center (GAC) is the latest addition to the downtown Warner Robins landscape. Housed inside the E.L. Greenway Welcome Center, GAC offers shoppers quality handcrafted Georgia-made products. Visitors to the region can take home a piece of Georgia while locals can take pride in the collection of unique items assembled.

The location is 99 Armed Forces Boulevard, N., which is the historic train depot located directly across the street from Robins Air Force Base at the corner of Watson Boulevard. The plan is that the Georgia Artisan Center eventually will be housed in the proposed Warner Robins Visitor Information Centers at I-75 and Russell Parkway. The visitor center will be the gateway entrance to the Vietnam Veterans Memorial Park campus.

A variety of handcrafted items now available for purchase include food products, music DVDs, books, soy candles and jewelry. All are made right here in Georgia and most are priced from $4.99 to $40.00. Quilted pieces, paintings and wood sculptures are at a higher bracket.

Those currently showing their work are distinguished author L. Harris Churchwell, who wrote “Seeking Glory” and “Captains at Rest,” both accounts of Georgia’s 12th Regiment during the Civil War. His wife Judy Churchwell, an author in her own right, shares “Tales from The Hotel,” which are her memories of the people she saw pass through the town of Hawkinsville when she was a child living in her family’s Hotel Hawkinsville. The book captures the local culture and personalities of the guests and townspeople.

Macon quilter Sandy Gilreath is showing pieces that are a unique combination of fabrics, themes and techniques. She also has her book “52 Tuesdays – A Quilt Journal” available for purchase. Author Glenn Grossman also has signed copies of his “The Yoshinos of Macon,” which features an introduction by Carolyn Crayton. Warner Robins resident Jake Redmon shares his “Waters of Hope,” a book inspired by his visit to the Catskill Mountains in New York.

Music collectors will enjoy the CDs of Rowland Everett Fall. His guitar and vocals are captured on “The Lightword Café,” “Hay and Hope” and “The Perfect Christmas.”

Daryl Lamb from Jackson, Georgia has handcrafted baskets in various sizes along with pendants and necklaces. Southern Soy Candles with a Georgia Peach scent are another favorite in the Georgia Made/Georgia Grown line-up. What’s unique about the candles is as the candle melts, it becomes a warm skin care product.

Perry craftsman Bill Loudermilk has a timely display of wood Old World Turned Christmas Ornaments, tool box and handsaw Christmas ornaments as well as train whistles. Additionally, Mark Turcotte has Shaker oval boxes, ornaments, pen sets and military pieces representing all of the U.S Armed Forces in wood and glass. And finally, for a taste of Georgia flavors, Grandma Kaufman’s Homestyle Goodness offers Frog Jam, Peach Bourbon BBQ Sauce, Peach Salsa and Sweet Baby Beets.

The Georgia Artisan Center is open during the Welcome Center’s normal hours, which are 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday.

Marsha Priest Buzzell is executive director of the Warner Robins Convention & Visitors Bureau and may be contacted at 478-922-5100 or cvb@wrga.gov.

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