Join Marketing intern and recent ’Berg alum Em Swain, ’22, as they visit local businesses only a short walk away from Heidelberg University’s campus. It's Walkable Wonders, our summer web series!
We’re nearing the end of June, and summer is well and truly here (in case the recent heat wave didn’t convince you!). When I was growing up, one of my favorite summer pastimes was spending the afternoons crafting and drawing with my grandma, Gloria Beair. My grandma is a very cool person – the only daughter of one of the Depression-era Junior Home Kids, she earned a full ride to art school when she graduated high school, and still draws and paints today. She always made the time to keep me engaged and art-ing around. The organizations I’m targeting today are some that I know she’ll enjoy as much as I do!
The Poignon Project
The Poignon Project is owned and operated by Ryan and Monica Poignon. Ryan, who also serves as the chair of the Tiffin Municipal Art Commission, specializes in glasswork. Ornaments, paper weights and jewelry are all hand-crafted and displayed throughout the shop. Ryan also does custom orders at no additional cost. The Poignon Project also hosts classes and demonstrations for those interested in glasswork. The classes cost $75 per project – so you and a friend can both learn together while making one product, if that work-study paycheck hasn’t hit yet. My favorite part of the Poignon Project was the fortune-telling chicken – Ryan’s funky quarter machine. The fortune-telling chicken lays fortune-telling eggs – and the egg I got contained a fortune-telling fish. How fortunate!
Right outside of the Poignon Project is the Tiffin Community Art Shed, a passion project by the owners. The Art Shed provides free art supplies to folks in the Tiffin community and celebrated its first year of operation on June 15. Through the donations and generosity of the Poignon Project, TMAC and the Tiffin community, art-ing has become more accessible than ever.
I’m looking forward to returning to the Poignon Project – my mom and I have already made plans to attend a glass-blowing class later this summer. The Poignon Project also serves as an information hub for downtown events. Because of their close tie to the Tiffin Municipal Arts Commission, they have the inside scoop about upcoming projects in the area. Ryan let me know about the Court Street Market on July 21 and August 18, and he encouraged me to throw my hat in the ring for TMAC’s traffic control box art contest, which will be accepting submissions until July 8.
The Poignon Project and the Tiffin Community Art Shed are located a six-minute walk from the center of campus. The shop is open Monday through Friday from 10 a.m.-6 p.m. For more information about The Poignon Project, check out their website. To submit your work to the TMAC’s Art Contest, check out the rules.
Healing Vines is owned and operated by Annette and Kari Walters – a mother-in-law / daughter-in-law duo! The team runs the store and creates much of the art that they sell.
The shop is filled with gemstones, incense, artwork, and various other spiritual novelties. Many students are fans of their crystals, which are surprisingly affordable for how popular their products are. Healing Vines has been very helpful to my friends’ crystal collections – but not too hard on their wallets, as all Heidelberg students receive a store-wide 10% discount!
My favorite part of Healing Vines was the atmosphere. The art, spiritual products and descriptions were made all the more personal by the gentle music and the smells of the incense they sold. I’m not much of a geologist myself, but I really enjoyed looking at all of the stones, stone sets and statues set up around the store.
The combination of music, products and sandalwood reminded me of the house of my childhood best friend. The family business is incredibly warm and welcoming. While there, I met both Annette and Kari, and the littlest Walter, Jasmine – who was incredibly considerate in being sure I didn’t trip over my own shoelace and was kind enough to show me how fast she could run (which was very fast!). Before I left, Kari was sure to let me know that I was under no obligation to buy anything and that I could come back anytime to enjoy the free vibes (which, in my opinion, is far better than the “free smells” offered at the Jimmy John’s across town.)
Healing Vines is located six minutes away from the center of Heidelberg’s campus. It’s open from 10 a.m.-6 p.m. Tuesday through Saturday. For more information on Healing Vines, check out their Facebook page.