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Photo: N/A, License: N/A, Created: 2018:10:31 11:11:50

Pittston Art Co-op. For PP L/R: Mary Kuna, Mary Kroptavich, Joleen Lazecki. Mark Moran cv04artcoopp2

Photo: N/A, License: N/A, Created: 2018:10:31 11:09:59

MARK MORAN / STAFF PHOTOGRAPHER Joleen Lazecki adjusts artwork in preparation for the opening of Art e Fekts. The art co-op on Main Street, Pittston, will display and sell work by local artists.

Holiday shoppers in downtown Pittston will have a new way to bring home a unique gift this year.

The Art e Fekts co-op, run by officials involved with the Pittston Second Friday Art Walk, will open to the public Saturday, Nov. 17.

“It has a whole new look inside,” said board member Joleen Lazecki. “We’re really trying to get local artists to come in.”

Located on Main Street, the co-op features a gallery of work by local artists available for sale and Lazecki said it also will include a smaller gallery to showcase work and hold classes, all leading to the back of the co-op, where Executive Director Mary Kroptavich will set up a photography studio.

A jury selects the pieces to display and sell at the gallery. Lazecki said the co-op compliments the artwork displayed at the city’s art walks.

“For me, it’s to go along with supporting local artists and local talent,” she said. “This will be the center hub of it all.”

In preparation for the opening, Lazecki, Kroptavich and others have spent hours painting, building and cleaning the space.

“We’ve been busy doing a lot of that,” she said.

Once the co-op officially opens, Lazecki hopes it will spice up the shopping options of residents and visitors while giving local artists and crafters a place to display their work.

“It’s something different,” she said. “When people walk in, I want them to say ‘I can see that in my house.’”

Not only will artwork be available for sale, but Lazecki said the co-op has local artists making handmade soaps and jewelry, which will be among the opening pieces.

While a shopper at chains like Pier 1 Imports and others herself, Lazecki hopes people will consider shopping for locally made art this holiday season and throughout the year — if only to find pieces that come with a story.

“They (the artists) put a lot of thought into them,” she said. “It’s that personal touch.”

Art e Fekts will hold its grand opening from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday, Nov. 17. The co-op is located on South Main Street, next to Boden.

sscinto@pittstonprogress.com