Intention: Building & Rebuilding a Space, an Organization

This article is about how The Sharing Tree has changed and how it remains the same…. about intention and how a space can encourage creativity.

It has been four weeks since we opened our doors. Grateful & loving our midtown home, it is important to recognize that we have grown, evolved, and will continue to- staying inspired and serving the needs of our community. In every location I have found a different strength & weakness in our organization.... in me. I clearly recall the day I envisioned the play lab, largely inspired by my son. I saw in front of me a clear example of the creative experience versus the “stuff".” The Sharing Tree originated with a primary focus on diverting stuff from the landfill, turning trash to treasure…but the stuff was starting to cloud the creative vision. The Sharing Tree, an organization with a great concept that had yet to realize its full potential. In analyzing this, asking what the community needed and adjusting the mission, the space must resemble the change, the enhancement.

What I love about our mission is that we are never stagnant (sometimes against our will, change happens) and that The Sharing Tree has always stayed open to possibility. The Sharing Tree encourages anything creative and collaborative. We have shifted much of our focus from the "stuff" to the heart of WHY the stuff was important... The experience, the process of being creative with the stuff. The only thing certain in this world is that there will be change.

Due to our summer camp, the immediate focus upon opening, has been to have the best creative camp EVER… therefore, many people have asked…”Where is all the stuff,? Will you still have a store?”

  • Yes. One of the things I love most about this space is its flexibility. The space can adapt to be more store/ stuff focused or, like now, more summer camp focused. The store will be on wheels, rolling shelves so that we can move it in on primary shopping times and out when we need a larger space for an event or camp. Granted, the space dedicated to the stuff will be a smaller space, but just as wonderful as it always was !

    AND… think about everything we can add to the organization BECAUSE of the space. Play space, events, birthday parties for all ages, team development programs, field trips, teacher workshops, makers space, after-school & weekend classes, baby and wedding showers, camps, pre-school programs, meeting space and SO MUCH MORE!

  • The store will be open more during certain seasons. For example, during summer camp the primary focus of the space will be dedicated to young creative learners. The fill-a-bag sales will be a primary focus for shopping.

Can I donate?

  • Yes, and we have a few new guides to help us help you! The Sharing Tree has always been grateful for the amount of donations we receive, we will continue to improve this system. With a staff of one, The Tree team was having a hard time managing the stuff so we now have a Top 20 list. See below

  • Donations will take place on specific days, stay tuned. As of right now, we prefer to not have donations the same days as camp…. it is a lot to manage. We appreciate your understanding.

  • All donations are tax-deductible.

Does The Sharing Tree do parties and events?

  • YES! Absolutely YES! What a thrill to have such an inspiring space made by the community for birthday parties for all ages- from play to art making. What about a baby or wedding shower? We have a stage…how about a sponsored talent show or a music event? Do you need meeting space? The Sharing Tree is an awesome & authentic space to do that!

What are the hours for open play?

  • Again, because the summer camp hosts 15 creative kids per week, we decided to have reduced hours and make sure we can maintain a happy, healthy flow. Summer hours are T/ Th 10-4:00 p.m. and Saturdays 10-1:00 p.m. Come in during these hours and pay general admission of $10 and there is a makers space and art project of the week, the play space and outdoor area.

  • Fall hours will be increased greatly and we will then add our morning preschool classes and after-school classes. Stay tuned!

The Sharing Tree team has designed the space to be versatile; to be an events space and classroom and so much more. Just like creativity… the space has the ability to inspire and encourage without saying a word. Much though has gone into the flow of the space.

Thank you to all of you who are reading this, who support us on many levels, who have been patient with us and grown with us during the past 10 years! Email carly@sharingtree.family for questions!P

Carly Sunny