Benefit exhibit for youth center at Artists Guild

‘Good Girl’ by Barry Lobdell (Photo provided)

SARANAC LAKE — Each year, the Adirondack Artists Guild selects a local non-profit organization to be the beneficiary of a special exhibit.

Artists will each donate an original work of art and a silent auction will be set up. For 2017, the Guild has selected the Saranac Lake Youth Center.

It seems increasingly important in this world that we protect our youth and provide safe and welcoming places where they can learn, hang out, and socialize.

For the month of January, the Guild’s doors will be open for community members to come in and bid on some unique works of art, and at the same time contribute to something that benefits our youth.

The opening reception will be Friday, Jan 13, from 5 to 7 p.m., although the show will be hung the previous week so that people can come in and bid.

According to its mission statement, the Saranac Lake Youth Center provides a healthy, substance-free, supervised environment for teenagers offering programs which develop social skills, personal growth and responsibility in a fun and supportive atmosphere.

It provides a forum that promotes the healthy development of our community’s youth.

The kids are provided with a supervised, drug-free environment where tweens and teens can gather to socialize, participate in discussion of teen issues, receive support, informal counseling and participate in a variety of organized activities.

The youth center is not just a place but a program that promotes increased self-esteem, confidence, conflict resolution, coping skills, communication and social skills in a safe place during the prime hours after school when kids are known to get into trouble if they are unsupervised.

In the past several years the center’s daily attendance has steadily increased. Over 125 teenagers in our community visit the center one or more days per week. It provides after school snacks with food donated by local businesses and individuals. The amount of food needed to feed all these hungry kids daily is substantial. The Youth Center serves a range of youth from all backgrounds. Whether it is to access the computers, to share music, play pool, air hockey, ping pong, board games, and video games or to work on special projects, there is always something to do at the Center.

The youth center has existed for more than 30 years on a shoestring budget to pay the bills and keep the doors open, depending on members of the community to donate supplies and make financial donations.

The Adirondack Artists Guild is a cooperative retail art gallery representing a diverse group of regional artists residing and working in the Tri-Lakes region of the Adirondack Park.

2017 marks the 20th year the gallery has been in business, though of the 15 current artist members, only one remains from the original group. In a co-op, the members share the expenses and take turns working in the gallery.

The gallery is located at 52 Main St, Saranac Lake, and can be reached at 518 891-2615.

Gallery hours are Tuesday through Saturday from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., and 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. Sundays.

The guild is on the web at