A new family run business will soon open its doors in Salem. Owners say the Salem Art Center will give children and adults a way to explore their creative side.
Originally from Ohio, Jessica and Joe Palotas moved to Salem from Florida nearly two months ago to settle in community with a good quality of life in which to raise a family and continue their teaching. Jessica is a photographer while Joe has been a professional artist for more than a decade. They started teaching, mainly working with home school associations while in Florida and are now bringing their love of education to Salem to help its small but budding art community grow.
The pair will work with kids from preschool to high school and adults on everything from drawing to painting at the new Salem Art Center. They'll offer after school enrichment programs as well.
The Palotas' say helping all ages explore their creative sides helps with problem solving. "When you come into the world of art, we give you multiple opportunities and different avenues to go through to make the right choice or make a choice that can at least spark a new conversation," said Joe Palotas.
Courses will be limited to five to 10 students in an attempt to keep class sizes small and the quality of education high. Each class will range one to two hours each.
The Salem Art Center will have its first classes for children Monday and its official ribbon cutting August 30. Adult classes will be added later in the Fall.
An event that brought thousands of people to Salem this year is coming back next year. Tickets go on sale Friday at 10 a.m. for the Blue Ridge Music Festival.