Art of Recycle is one of the best non-profit resources that Lancaster County has and I hope we never take them for granted. Pre-pandemic they were an awesome place to take the kids to do craft projects and to shop for inexpensive crafting supplies. Unfortunately the pandemic hit and they had to close the store to the public - but they didn't stop providing valuable resources to the community. They’ve been helping teachers get free teaching books and supplies for their classrooms. They spent the summer expanding and remodeling for the day they can fully reopen to the public. But one of the best resources that they’ve provided is free books for children. Our public library has been closed for months due to the pandemic. Art of Recycle is one of very few, if any, places to get free books for children to read and for supplemental academic support for families doing online school. They truly have a heart for our community and we are very blessed to have them. Thank you Chelas, Mr Special, and all your wonderful staff for adding a little joy to all of our lives.
Art of Recycle is GREAT!!! I'm an occupational therapist at Intermediate 13 and also have a free mixed ability inclusive leisure program call Forever Friends at the Palmyra Grace Brethren Church. Art of Recycle has enabled me to improve the quality of our crafts. We are able to have wonderful crafts at Forever Friends programs and still keep our program free.
On my first visit to Art of Recycle I was treated to a guided tour, an open discussion about the history of the organization and in depth pointers for starting a similar program of my own. After Mr. Nobody Special (a truly unfitting name for this generous individual) gave me this thorough tour, I shopped and also availed myself of the free teachers resources.
Art of Recycle offers so much to the community, a free children's art activity area, quality art and craft materials at an extreme bargain price, and a huge free teachers resource space. It's a brilliant way to promote art and support the community that it's based in.
Amazing friendly staff great workshops with great experiences all around great place for people who are artistic eccentric and like to be different.
As a therapist and artist, I value the creative process as a means of healing and self exploration. Artistic expression is a means to inner peace, fulfillment and problem solving. Art of Recycle is my "go to" for materials, inspiration and "good energy." Staff, volunteers and workshop leaders are encouraging and positive role models for those entering this magical place. AoR is a much needed model that would be a welcome addition to every community. We are very blessed to have access to this wondrous experience. Keep up the great work!
Art of Recycle
A place Artist in mind and in Spirit, The Classes enspire you no matter who you are ! Five Thumbs Up !
Great Place to Create.
I can use almost any craft idea I might find with the kids in vacation Bible school or other youth groups for very little cost because any materials you could think of are there and the prices are astonishingly low!
Art of Recycle's workshops have allowed my buried creativity to bubble to the surface. I am challenged and loving every minute of time spent creating here. Chelas, Mr. Nobody, and all the volunteers are so friendly and helpful. They give you ideas and encouragement. Several people including myself have been known to say during a workshop, "This is my happy place!" The first workshop I went to in Jan 18, a participant said, "I didn't know I'd been waiting all my life to do this!" I highly recommend Art of Recycle to anyone who wants to explore their creative side. They are a blessing to the community.
When we started Art of Recycle we thought our mission was to teach people to create art with recycled materials. We soon learned that was just how we did what we did. We changed our mission to accurately reflect our mission of "Healing and Growing Community, utilizing recycled art materials." Six years after incorporation and ten years after the seeds of starting we are still going strong and serving as a hub for people to meet and get to know one another.
Art of Recycle is such a magical wonderland! We wanted to create a place that art could thrive, and does it ever! It makes my heart dance with joy to see the craft castle full of kids (and moms, dads, grandparents, etc.) all crafting away. I feel like I am at the beginning of a great adventure and I am so blessed to be a part of it.
I love being able to be a part (the narrator puppet) of the finger puppet theater. I get to see the creativity and silliness of kids creating stories and being able to help guide them in positive storylines where trouble is more often because of misunderstandings rather than evil intentions.
I am glad to see that the local community loves and needs and enjoys the center as much as I do. I get up every day excited to go volunteer, there isn't a happier place for me to be. I could go on and on but if you really want to experience and understand it you just have to get to Ephrata and come see it. It will change you too!
This is an incredible organization and destination. I don't know where to begin! I teach and facilitate art education in several ways, and Art of Recycle will not only help me do it in a more ecological, economical, communal, and inspiring way - they'll do all that while growing from our connection and thereby helping more people with every patron they influence. My head was spinning from how sublimely impacting this model of cooperative economy can be.
Love that teachers get free materials for their classrooms. Always enjoy shopping in their store, and the personnel are always friendly and helpful.
I love this charming store & everything it does for the community! Can’t wait to go back! Yes, apparently you can buy happiness! ❤️
I love this place. The owners are creative, forward thinking and have a wonderful vision. The store is full of unique ever -changing products affordable to everyone. The craft castle opens minds to explore your inner creativity. The generosity of the owners has made a huge impact on teachers by giving them free classroom materials. Many businesses could learn valuable lessons from this shop. Spread the word! This place offers a wonderful experience!
There's something uplifting about seeing beauty and being able to make something beautiful with your own hands.
Just visiting this place is therapeutic, and taking part in one of the workshops is exhilarating: the options on the table, the chat with table-mates even though we've never met before; the buzzing of creative minds; the adrenaline rush in seeing your work coming together or the work next to you...
This non-profit also displays a cyclical economic model as it's giving a new life to old objects or making new from old, for pleasure or as a budding small business. AND, it find a place for things we don't see a use for or we discard, but a creative mind can transform into something beautiful.
I had been desiring to do this kind of art for a long time and now I was given the opportunity to do it in one night and end with with a finished product! Wonderful, right?
Bravo, Art of Recycle!!! Standing ovation!!
I had the opportunity to learn about Art of Recycle yesterday thanks to the reference from a kind stranger! For years I have utilized other thrift stores in the area for crafting supplies and have always wished for a place more focused on arts... I cannot believe that I had no idea this hidden treasure existed! No question about it, I plan on becoming a regular patron!
Had a great time making mosiacs. The staff/volunteers were extremely helpful & went above & beyond to make everything perfect. I can't say enough great things about them.
I have been working with this organization for almost a year. My students with special needs have been volunteering and learning many important work skills and experiences. They are truly support our local community and give back so much!
Our students create crafts that are sold at the IU13 Winter and Spring Bazaar. Art of Recycle has given students their supplies for free and has helped to promote their mini business. Monies raised by the students go back to the students to provide them with opportunities many of them may never get to experience otherwise.
Art of Recycle has also done workshops with our students. They continues to share their gifts and creativity each day. They do ALL of this and do not take a paycheck.
God has blessed both Chelas and Nobody with an amazing gift. I personally am very grateful to have them as a part of the Ephrata community!
This place has changed my life! I started as an eager, frequent visitor, applauding the unique variety and organized quality items and a multitude of materials. I now volunteer and help instruct workshops, what a way to give back to the community and fuel my artistic endeavors. Teaching children and adults alike useful skills at the same time!
When I am looking for the different craft item.. need to ask questions about how to do something, this is the place I go! Great variety of craft items at a great price!
Art of Recycle is a very special place in Ephrata. Our go to place first when we need anything to do with creating. One never knows what you will find there. Very organized. Very fun...did you know they can host Birthday Parties! Truly a treasure! Chelas and Mr. Nobody have such a passion to serve the comuunity well. They are extememly accommodating, talented, kind and giving.
A creative environment for each and every person who walks through their door. Not only the best place in the county for supplies, but also truly helpful and knowledgeable people to assist in any project!
I absolutely love this store, mission, staff and the classes that are offered. The staff is helpful in the classes during the time of need. I have been to the new location several times and never walk out empty handed. I am super excited about the new location and eager to attend more classes when time permits. They really have educated me that things can be reused/recycled.
The creative energy that surrounds this non profit , is like no other ! The owners are passionate , community oriented people that are top notch artists with endless energy!
Outstanding! Such a wonderful store. Product is beautifully displayed and the layout of the store invites you to linger. The profits go to support art in the community. Win win all the way around
My absolute favorite place in Ephrata. My 3 year old has a blast and stays so focused on what she's doing and mommy can get her closet craft hoarding all done at the same place. And we definitely can't leave before she gets to put on a puppet show for me. (: great people, great atmosphere, great fun.
I stumbled across Art of Recycles fb page one day. It looked fabulous and I just so happened to wonder over to ephrata every now and again to see a friend. I was amazed when I walked in at the amount of materials. I'm still amazed every time I stop in. I utilize it as a place to purchase craft materials... And I've yet to not find what I was looking for. Visiting Art of Recycle helped me complete 2 of my biggest tasks. I was able to construct a wedding album for less then $10 and practically complete my crochet hook collection for less then $5. I easily had $100 worth of materials between the two.
I can easily get lost for hours here, and I didn't even check out any of the classes there offer!! I've followed along online and seen pictures of all the wonderful art created. Hopefully soon I'll get a chance to join in. I can't imagine I'd be disappointed.
This is a place for creating, exploring talents and hobbies, making new friends, entertainment, aiding and bringing members of the community and so so so much more. This is a place any creative mind should definitely check out!
I always leave happy...whether I spend .50 or $15. I always find the perfect things for my projects. Everyone is so helpful and knowledgeable. Love it!!! I bring all my friends and family here when they visit.
Excellent group of people and mission for children young and old to be as creative as their minds allow.
The town of Ephrata has a long history of providing venues in which to recycle. The area is rich in businesses that have encouraged people to recycle/reuse items; furniture and clothing being most prominent. Art of Recycle has found another way to encourage people to use items that may have otherwise added to our area landfills. They use art to fulfill that goal. They are a valued member of Ephrata's community. Please visit them to see how they can help to enrich your life.
Thank you for your support. :) We appreciate you taking time to leave a review for us.
I remember when Art of Recycle first opened up. I had just discovered the concept of creative reuse, and was happy to know that there was such a place in my area! I attended a workshop where we made kaleidoscopes (I still have mine!). I have donated a lot of stuff to them since, which was happily taken, and I've bought a lot of cool yarn there, too. A passion for creativity, a welcoming attitude, and a community spirit is always prevalent at Art of Recycle.
Thank you Jennifer. Because of donations from community members like you we continue to thrive. Thank you for your continued support.
Awesome place and people!! Great finds for DIYers and crafters with unbelievable pricing and selection! And it's all the better that the money I spend goes back into the community in such a creative and positive way!! Chelas and Mr. Nobody Special are indeed special!
exciting things for kids, families, and the environment - congrats to the creative minds and generous hearts behind Art of Recycle in Ephrata, PA!
Art of Recycle is an amazing place with dedicated, hardworking, and caring owners who help there community by providing a space to express yourself in creative ways. I worked as an intern for Chelas and Mr. Nobody for a little while. This is truly a magical place to create your hearts desire. I learned a lot about the small community while I was here and I also really found a calling to challenge myself as an artist. Everyday Chelas and Nobody push themselves to create an amazing place where people can come together and feel that they are a part of a community. I have witnessed them create a space for teenagers and young adults to come hang in a safe environment within a matter of weeks. They truly inspire me to continue to create art and they've also inspired me to open my own art business and I want to thank them for that. I also hope just as they inspire me but they will inspire other artists and community members as well. You guys are the best! With love-Lianna
Art of recycle is a wonderful resource and beautiful Community Arts Center. They have engaged the community and created a safe space for children and adults alike to explore their creative side. They are ever-present other community events, delighting families with balloon art and face painting that has no rival. I am so grateful to have such a wonderful local resource. Thank you!
I absolutely love this craft center. Mr Special, Chelas and their volunteers are so welcoming and helpful. I have taken three of their classes this summer. They were all so much fun and I came home at the end of the evening with a finished project! They are now my favorite charity for donations. I LOVE how they Recycle things that would normally end up in a landfill.
This place is a must-visit for people who love to create. I don't live in the area, but I stop there whenever I'm nearby. I always find some neat picture frames and signs. I love that supplies of all kinds which might otherwise be thrown away are available at very low prices. It's inspiring to see art that they have created around the store, and at the same time know that reusing these items is helping to keep our planet habitable. Even the receipts are inspiring!
We were only at AoR once and my 3 1/2 year old LOVED it!!! We will definitely be going again!!! And I always keep a close eye on my child, I never assume the staff needs to babysit while I shop. Some people run all over people. Sad.
My girls (9&7) love coming here. Everyone is always so nice and friendly. My girls love the craft table . They make puppets and then go back to the puppet station and put on a show. They ask me to take them there quite often. It's a great place to take the kids.
Love, love, love Art of Recycle! My Grandchildren go there whenever they visit and love it. The staff is so friendly and helpful! We have been restoring a 1936 home in Ephrata and always find what we need, if we can't find it...the staff will search their inventory for what we need. Bravo to Art of Recycle for providing this place for children to go and express their creavitiy in a safe, friendly environment and for saving many treasures from the trash!
My son got married in June and wanted a "wish in a bottle" table at the wedding due to the fact that it was a beach wedding theme. We were able to find so much more than we needed so reasonably priced at Art of Recycle that we created an entire table of "Wish in a Bottle" with basket, shells, an old sailor, old bottles and candles with melted wax, even a ship. What a wonderful place. It inspires the child in each of us to come out and play.
I love the Art of Recycle and visit often. Everyone I have brought with me to visit gets encouraged to get there creative juices going and always find something they have to take home. I am looking forward to moving across the street in Oct. and helping out with the sewing and creating. Fantastic place for KIDS of all ages to be creative. See you there.
Art of Recycle is one of the most magical places there is. My son and I have been going there for 2 years and love it. It is an awesome place to volunteer and be. Being at Art of Recycle is therapy to me and being apart of it's operation and success makes my heart smile. There are so many people that benefit from Art of Recycle being in business. My son is 5 years old and loves making finger puppets, playing in the puppet theater and also volunteers. He has also met and plays with some the other kids that frequent Art of Recycle. We have made some great friends from being at Art of Recycle including Chelas, Mr. Nobody Special, Phoenix and many more. Thank you for all you do for our community and may Art of Recycle flourish!
We love Art of Recycle. My daughters ( ages 10 &10) and I can spend hours making fun projects at Ephrata's Art of Recycle. We have become a more "crafty" family. It is a great way to spend time with my girls, away from electronics. Miss Chelas and Mr. Nobody Special are so friendly!
I have been a customer at the store and also have hired Chelas and Mr Nobody Special twice for private parties. They are the most caring and kind indiduals. And are so great and patient with children. I have referred them to others and everybody who has had them for parties raves about how great they are. The store is a awesome place to find all kinds of unique treasures for all your crafty needs. I am so glad I have AOR in my town and that Chelas and Mr Nobody are here too. They are super talented and very kind. Keep up the great work guys.
I first heard about Art of Recycle at an event where they provided face painting and Balloon creations. Very warm and welcoming folks! And their store is no different...when you walk in, you're family! Love it love it love it!!
Chelas and Mr. Nobody are the most giving people I have ever met. Their shop is a wonderful place for kids to come to after school and create. They are happy to help others create and make amazing things. They have such unusual items for sale at such reasonable prices. They work so hard at this art and give it their all. Chelas is a very gifted and accomplished painter. Her work is amazing. Mr. Nobody has so many talents. It is always such a joy to come visit them. They are the best at what they do. They are so selfless. They work so diligently to make our community a better place to live in.
Art of Recycle provides so many services and support to our community. Where do I start? They offer a safe place for kids to come after school to create.....they offer fantastic buys of varied items for crafters, artists and anyone looking for neat things. And best of all they help Mother Earth by providing a home for things no longer cherished by the former owners and save them from finding a final unhappy home at a landfill or incinerator.
Art of Recycle is an absolute, must experience. If you lack in artistic ability, like myself, you are in good hands. Chelas and Nobody have helped me on so many projects. From costumes to framing artwork to learning how to sew, they are always there to help!! I had some ideas and thoughts about projects, and Chelas and Nobody just made them happen. Chelas and Nobody have very big hearts. Their desire to serve the community has made a lasting impression on my family. We will always be a part of Art of Recycle!!! WE love you guys!!! Heidi, Aliyah, Sophia & Isabella
Thank you! Thank you, Chelas and Nobody, for your creativity and dedication to make the world a better place on sooo many levels! It was good to reconnect with you today. There is no other place on earth as this... I hope all of YOUR wishes come true because you are making others come true in ways all of us could have never dreamed possible.
Melissa Hand, Buyer
Ten Thousand Villages
This place is amazing! They have everything you can imagine. I had recently visited the area an decided to check this place out. They have an arts and craft area for kids in store which is great. I came out with some much stuff! (Really inexpensive too!) Being an artist I will be back for more! Great place for both adults and children!
Art of Recycle is a magical place, where kids and adults alike can unwind and let their creative energies flow!
Inside is the "Craft Castle," a crafting area where kids can craft for free with materials provided for them. Most of the kids make finger puppets and then put on a puppet show together, with the help of Mr. Special at the puppet stage!
The thrifty craft store in the front half of the building is my favorite to meander in. The set-up is whimsical, and the crafting goodies are cheap and abundant! It is truly a crafter's paradise. Need project inspiration and help? Art of Recycle has reference books for you to flip through, and even comfortable chairs and hot tea for you to settle down with while you're flipping through the pages and developing ideas.
They also host workshops for the community to learn different art forms and crafts, and overall just have fun.
I am absolutely supportive of this place. It's a very cozy, playful atmosphere, run by good people.
It's the place where wishes come true! (No really, make a wish in the wishing tree and chances are the fairies will grant it!)
I can't overemphasize how much Art of Recycle benefits our community. Through their community outreach programs and their onsite facilities (crafting table, workshops, discount craft supply store, etc.) they provide a positive, safe and creative environment for everyone in the Ephrata area, young and old. Also, they are a wealth of knowledge and extremely helpful when you stop in seeking advice on a home project. In addition, they are becoming a focal point for other area non-profits and those interested in the arts to meet, brainstorm and plan events and programs.
On a personal note, my thirteen year old son and his friends frequently visit Art of Recycle and he is always excited to tell about what is happening there. Although he claims he is not creative, he often comes home with something cool that he has made. Whenever I visit, there are always happy children busily making things at the crafting table.
Chelas has created a lovely place full of imagination and life.... You can donate supplies, or pick up what you need and start creating your masterpiece!
The Art of Recycle quickly became one, if not The, favorite place of mine in town. The staff is energetic and inspiring all on their own, but the facility speaks creativity with one glimpse. What a boon to the community to have not just a gathering place, creative outlet, recycling center and thrift store all in one! As a professional artist, this will certainly be on my list of go-to places for both inspiration and interesting materials. Further, my respect for this organization has only deepened from seeing their outreach in the community by being involved in fairs and art shows not only in our town proper but also in other areas of our county.
a fantastic place run by fantastic people. Every city should have 2 people as caring as Mr. Nobody and Chelas and also have a place as great as Art of Recycle.
From Chelas' body painting, to Nobody's puppet theater, these folks are so professional! Kids of all ages are grinning ear to ear when they visit Art of Recycle - there's a new fun thing in every corner.
Art, art, art! shrieks, survives and flourishes at Art of Recycle.
I have watched it evolve over the years and it just keeps getting better - - way to go, y'all!
Awesome place keep up the good work art is always important for society :0)
They are just so awesome! They do so much good for the world
Art of Recycle's staff are fantastically creative and fun!
Art of Recycle brings a unique arts influence to Ephrata that has been missing since at least I was in school. Now an art student at a local university, I am thrilled to see the art supplies as well as odds & ends AOR carries that can be used for my projects or for fun.
Art of Recycle is engaged in the community as well. I run into them at almost every local event, as well as in Lancaster city as well! They are passionate about bringing an arts culture to the local community--young & old alike!
Plus, Josh & Chelas are a lovely duo & always make me smile!
How much do I love The Art of Recycle?.....let me count the ways
Makes me feel welcome and at home
Gives me that child's feeling of finding a treasure
Is filled with fun stuff to look at, touch and use
All ideas are ok
There is no wrong way to do things
Freedom to create
No question is too silly
I know this place will change the lives of all who enter
It is a safe place
It is a nurturing place
I can get the things I need without spending much
All children are accepted and can express themselves creatively
Children will learn things they never knew about themselves
I have a place to take my stuff and know someone will benefit
My thoughts about our earth and recycling are changing
I now have a box to collect things I come across to take there next time
The building looks so beautiful enhancing the community with murals
colorful flowers in clever containers built with discarded materials
The encouragement that I can do it too
You are never too old....this place welcomes the child...even if you are 66
I just happen to use the public parking lot in while in Ephrata and was pleasantly surprised to find Art of Recycle. I was first attracted by the Craft Castle bunting outside and then further intrigued by the upcycled furniture at the back door. Upon entering, I was overwhelmed with a recycler's paradise of collected, usable materials. Though I was not currently on the hunt for wooden frames, furniture posts or hundreds of other small parts, I was able to find some fabric that I "needed" and was able to purchase for a very low price.
It is satisfying to observe that children have a place to go that embraces their natural curiosity to wonder and therefore discover through the use of their hands, imagination, and found materials. As an educator, I see a decline in self-made exploration in a world of technology and immediate stimulation. Knowing that children can discover a process to satisfaction by seeing a process of creativity keeps me in hopes of well rounded future adults.
Thank you, Art of Recycle for being part of a better world through upcycling.
I took my 3 girlies in to check it out and wound up staying for 4 hours! I think I was the one who complained about time to go the most! We LOVED being "allowed" to think outside the box and just enjoy being creative!!! The puppet theater was a huge hit with the kiddos, and I believe before the summers over we will have a whole army of finger puppets! (So far we've off to a good start!) I am in love with the tree on the puppet stage and dream of having one just like it in our basement! We of course could not leave with out picking up a few extra supplies before heading home! If ever my tree house dream becomes a reality, I know just the place to pick up supplies!
I can think of no better place to go and imagine what is possible, and then realize the dream than the Art of Recycle. I recently had a prop to make for a performance and took the basic parts there to assemble and paint because I don't have room in my apartment. The owners were really helpful and generous, and while I was there I was inspired by some LED lights that I ended up buying and adding to the prop. I took an upholstery workshop and learned how to re-cover a footstool that belonged to my great-grandmother. I never would have considered trying to fix it on my own, so the offer of the workshop was just what I needed, and I learned so much. We've stopped in and played in the craft castle to make finger puppets and use the puppet theatre, or just to browse and get inspired. The owners are always friendly, helpful, and are always up to something incredible - making a dragon, creating a giant kaleidoscope, or painting a series of tiny doors that will be for fairy houses. This is a safe, happy, and inspiring space for the dreamer and creator in all of us.
I'm so glad to have stumbled upon the magical place that is Art of Recycle! They've got a great, big selection of the most random trinkets and crafting materials that are extremely affordable for even the most starving artist. Just walking around the store was giving me ideas for future projects- and the fact that you can use the space to actually work is FANTASTIC. Art of Recycle made me feel hopeful for our small town creative community, and I can't wait to go back.
Art of recycle is an amazing place for adults as well as children. You can find odds and ends craft supplies that you can't find anywhere else. The craft castle is an amazing place for everyone. My daughter, niece and nephews love going there. They are always asking if it's open so they can go. The craft castle has so many craft supplies that the opportunities are endless. The kids always come home with something different. It is a place where their imagination can run wild. The staff are always so helpful with creating ideas and helping get the project started. They offer classes for different projects and we are looking forward to attending some of them.
My husband and I had a wonderful time painting during an evening of guided meditation-inspired painting. The cost was a donation and we brought our own small canvasses. Our fellow participants and all of the Art of Recycle folks were encouraging and friendly.