By Kelly Dickey
The Herald Bulletin
ANDERSON, Ind. — Wine and art are often associated with urban areas, but one local event center is combing the two to entertain Madison County residents.
Art wine nights are growing in popularity in major cities, and Toscana Event Centre is getting in on the action.
Once a month, the former firehouse has Art of the Bottle, an event for people to learn how to paint while sipping on adult grape juice. Owner Lisa Singleton-Roberts said it’s a way to offer something common in urban culture to Madison County.
“I don’t think we, in Anderson, offer enough of the big city extracurricular activities for adults,” she said. “I think it’s a unique way to spend the evening out with friends doing something.”
Every second Friday of the month, people can come in to drink and paint for two hours. An instructor goes through painting basics and takes his pupils through the process step by step.
The class costs $25, which goes toward the lesson, wine, paint and canvas. Attendees can choose from a variety of red and white wines, or they can choose to have water or soft drinks.
Singleton-Roberts said Art of the Bottle has a laid- back atmosphere, which alleviates guests’ anxiety.
“I think sometimes we all secretly wish we had a talent, whether it be playing the piano, painting or singing,” she said. “This is something in a non-judging environment for like-minded people to experience, without having to travel.”
To attend similar events, Anderson residents have to travel, like to Wine and Canvas in Indianapolis. Although the art studio offers more wine painting lessons, it requires more drive time and costs $35 to $45.
Fifteen to 20 people attend Art in the Bottle each month, Singleton-Roberts said. Although some people have attended more than once since the event’s inception in November, the class often consists of newcomers.
To make sure Art in the Bottle retains its intimate setting, no more than 20 people may attend each lesson. Singleton-Roberts said she has had to turn away people because the class was at capacity.
“It’s heartbreaking to turn people away because people really enjoy it,” she said. “Every month surprises me. It’s a mixture of people.”
Once it gets warmer out, Toscana will take the event outside for the spring, early summer and fall classes. The venue also offers private classes for groups with a minimum of 10 people.
If demand for Art of the Bottle grows, Singleton-Roberts will consider offering more classes, but in the meantime she suggests people register online in advance to ensure a spot in the class.
The next Art of the Bottle is at 6 p.m. April 11 at Toscana Event Centre, 1314 Broadway. To register, visit toscanaindiana.com.
Like Kelly Dickey on Facebook and follow her on Twitter @KellyD_THB, or call 640-4805.