The WAD Trolley Tour

Take a magical mystery tour through St. Pete's Warehouse Arts District

click to enlarge MEETING THEIR PUBLIC: Mark Aeling and Catherine Woods at the 8,000-sq-ft warehouse where they create their large-scale sculptures. -
MEETING THEIR PUBLIC: Mark Aeling and Catherine Woods at the 8,000-sq-ft warehouse where they create their large-scale sculptures.

The Warehouse Arts District Association — headed by Mark Aeling and Duncan McClellan — has teamed up with the City of St. Petersburg to offer a free trolley to WADA destinations during Second Saturday Gallery Walk on Feb. 9 from 5-9 p.m. (If there’s enough demand, the trolley will continue to be offered each month.) The trolley will run in regular intervals throughout the night in a roughly two-mile loop along Central Ave. between 16th and 30th streets down to 5th and 6th Avenues South and the artists’ studios there. Free parking can be found on First. Ave. North and South from 15th St. to 30th St. Some additional parking is available at all stops, and in the vacant lot at the northeast corner of Central and 29th. There’ll also be a raffle of unique prizes; riders will receive one ticket from each stop.

Here are the stops by number; you can take the tour in any order you like, and hop on the trolley at any of the stops.

1. Craftsman House Gallery (2955 Central Ave.) This fully restored 1918 bungalow doubles as a gallery space for 300-plus local and national artists. Equipped with a converted carriage house that now functions as a working studio, Craftsman House also boasts a cafe offering a variety of caffeinated pick-me-ups, beer, and food.

2. Nuance Galleries (2924 Central Ave.) This Tampa-based gallery, known for its custom framing, opened its St. Petersburg location in the spring of 2012, showing oils, watercolors, and prints from local, regional and national artists.

3. Grand Central Stained Glass (2425 Central Ave.) Founded in 2006 by Bradley and Eloyne Erickson, GCSG has expanded twice and operates as something of a full-service stained glass shop where they produce commissioned private and public art, run a retail store, and offer classes, all on top of providing equipment, tools, and supplies to other stained glass artists.

4. Articles Gallery (1445 Central Ave.) When she isn’t busy being a member of St. Pete City Council, Leslie Curran is putting her quarter-century’s worth of custom framing experience to work at her studio, where she also offers an array of prints and originals, jewelry from local artists, as well as home accessories and unique furniture.

5. St. Pete Clay Company (420 22nd St. S) With former artists in residence Adam Yungbluth and Matt Scheimann at the helm since 2010, the storied ceramics advocates of St. Pete Clay have continued their long-standing tradition of offering education programs while operating a studio, gallery, and supply store.

6/7/8. MGA Sculpture Studio/C Glass Studio/Soft Water Studio (515 22nd St. S) Although she moonlighted in electrical engineering, St. Pete-based painter Carrie Jadus’ true calling was to be an artist; the 2nd Saturday Art Walk on Feb. 9 will serve as something of a grand opening for her new digs, Soft Water Studio. The space is housed within the same, roughly 8,000-sq-ft warehouse as C Glass Studio, where Catherine Woods creates her large glass and metal sculptures that have been installed at various locations across the country; during the tour she’ll be offering a behind-the scenes look at her most recent local project, the 24-foot Kinetic Ring at 5100 W. Kennedy Blvd. in Tampa. Anchoring 515 22nd. St. S. is Mark Aeling’s MGA Sculpture Studio, where he utilizes the building’s 25-foot ceilings to run his full-service structural fabrication facility: in short, he’s a problem solver creating large-scale works. The entire complex is a must-see.

9. Duncan McClellan Glass Art Studio and Hot Shop (2342 Emerson Ave. S) The WAD means so much to this world-renowned glass-blower that he made major investments in transforming a former tomato and fish packing plant into this studio and gallery, and his presence in the district will allow for the continued growth of WAD’s stature.

10. Zen Glass (27th Street S) Zen Glass is a no-frills lampworking and glass-blowing studio that features the work of Dave Walker, Christian Zvonik, and Josh Poll. A great place to take a class for anyone even remotely interested in the practice, the space also houses an impressive gallery and retail space.

12. Charlier Parker Pottery (2747 Sixth Ave. S) As co-founder and former owner of St. Pete Clay Co., Charlie Parker has literally had his hands on the St. Petersburg arts scene for decades. His influence and wisdom attract those looking to change their own lives through clay to his ceramics studio, which boasts a dozen resident artists and has been operating in the district for two years now.

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