The Coast Collective Art Centre is hosting its annual fundraiser on Friday, Oct. 20. The centre not only features a gallery but also classroom and studio space as well as a gift shop that will be transformed just in time for Christmas. (Gazette file photo)

Local non-profit raising funds to expand reach

Coast Collective Art Centre’s Raise the Roof fundraiser goes next Friday

If you’re looking for some art-rageous fun, there’s an event next Friday you won’t want to miss.

The Coast Collective Art Centre is once again hosting their annual Raise the Roof fundraiser with the hopes of collecting enough money to keep the non-profit operating for another year.

“When you’re a non-profit you’re always struggling for funds,” said artist Anne Miller. “One of the main pieces of this fundraiser is to get money to advertise … We’d love to have a higher profile in the community.”

Miller, who has been a member artist for eight years and was a former board member, noted the move last year to the centre’s new location on Wale Road was a positive one, although it does come with higher rent.

RELATED: Coast Collective transforming in Colwood

“We need to keep up the level of quality and the look,” she said, adding it will help them compete with galleries in downtown Victoria.

Along with the new space having that updated, high-end feel, it’s also centrally located on the West Shore, providing more visibility in the community, and Miller noted, those with mobility issues can easily access the building and the centre’s classrooms, which solves a number of issues the old space had.

“Charming as it was, there was an awful cost associated with that,” she added about the upkeep of the old building.

Finding a space that could accommodate the growing needs of members was important as Coast Collective represents a wide range of members from as far as Tofino to the Gulf Islands. There are two different types of membership options, with local members being required to contribute their time in the gallery and with those that aren’t local paying the centre a larger commission on sales.

“It takes a team,” Miller said. “It’s a lovely place to come.”

She noted she often encourages friends and family to come visit the gallery and “they go ‘oh yeah, it’s just another art gallery.’” But once they actually step foot in the space, she said their reaction changes and the response is usually “‘you didn’t tell me it was this cool.’”

If all goes well next week, Miller hopes there will also be room in next year’s budget for more opportunity to get more children involved and into the space.

“It’s wonderful to watch little kids looking at the art hanging on the walls … When we bring in school classes they’re just enthralled,” she said, adding the gallery is open to all ages and admission is free.

But the centre isn’t just home to the gallery and classrooms. There’s also a gift shop filled with local, one-of-a-kind pieces.

“Anytime you need a gift for somebody you could find it there,” Miller said, with items ranging from pottery pieces to silk scarves, tea, cards, clothing, paintings and much more. “We don’t have just two-dimensional art and a lot of people don’t realize that.”

Just in time for Christmas, the centre hosts its annual Gift and Wishes show from Nov. 15 until Dec. 23. “We basically turn the entire gallery into a giant gift shop,” Miller said, adding items are restocked regularly.

Raise the Roof fundraising event

This annual fundraiser for the Coast Collective Art Centre is Friday, Oct. 20 and will feature the band Katzenjammer, playing classic rock and dance favourites. Organizers are promising a fun night filled with spirited socializing, dancing and an exceptional silent auction.

The event is once again taking place in Langford at the Royal Canadian Legion Branch 91, 761 Station Ave. Doors open at 6:30 p.m. with music getting underway shortly after that and will continue until midnight. Tickets are $20 and include admission, dancing and light refreshments.

For more information on this show or the Coast Collective, go to coastcollective.ca.


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