Pop-up art shop raises over $25,000 for NJ nonprofit

What started as a pop-up shop for art and donations in Hopewell has raised over $25,000 for HomeFront, the non-profit organization that focuses on ending homelessness in central Jersey .

The pop-up shop, organized by members of ArtSpace, one of HomeFront’s creative programs, launched in early December. ArtSpace is a spacious studio on the family campus of HomeFront that offers guests the opportunity to create and make art.

At the pop-up, people donate pottery, collectibles, art, antiques and other items that volunteers then sell to benefit HomeFront, said Ruthann Traylor, director of ArtSpace. and SewingSpace.

The pop-up is open on select days for purchases and donations, and will remain open through May, depending on continued community donations.

“So whatever donations come in, we go through them and try to put them in small environments where they look good,” said Annie Battle, a HomeFront volunteer for 10 years.

Battle, who has been volunteering in the store since its launch late last year, helps organize items and new gifts in the store.

Rochelle Newman, of Yardley, Pennsylvania, brings a donation into the store.Michael Mancuso | NJ Advance Media for NJ.com

Jim Baxter, owner of Baxter Construction, owns the storefront. Since renovating the upstairs area, he offered HomeFront to use the downstairs space, Traylor said.

Traylor said the store was largely run by volunteers and people often bought new items and donated their old ones. “Some people come shopping early and at the end of the day, (they) come back with things they donated,” she said.

Also in the space is a sewing area where a seamstress creates different projects, including upholstering interesting chairs or making pet toys, Traylor said.

Volunteers also accept essential items, including diapers, hygiene products and non-perishable food, at the pop-up. The donated items then go to HomeFront customers.

The pop-up is located at 31 West Broad St. in Hopewell. It is open for shopping from noon to 6 p.m. on Friday and from noon to 4 p.m. on Saturday and Sunday. Donations are accepted from 10 a.m. to noon on Wednesdays and Saturdays.

“I think it’s a real win-win,” Battle said of the pop-up. “People want to pass things on, do it (for) people in need and they can also find amazing finds there at very low prices.”

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