Kenosha Creative Space announces purchase of facility


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Members, events coming soon to downtown co-working space, performance venue

KENOSHA – Kenosha Creative Space Inc. is excited to announce it has completed the purchase of the property at 624 57th St. in downtown Kenosha.
Having closed on the building in December, the nonprofit organization is now beginning to welcome its first Resident Members to the facility.

Kenosha Creative Space is a co-working space committed to creating economic and artistic opportunities for local artists, musicians, creatives, entrepreneurs and their partner organizations. The organization also provides arts and cultural programming to the community.
Incorporated as a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization in February 2016, Kenosha Creative Space Inc. has been raising funds for several years in an effort to purchase its first physical space.

“We at KCS are looking at 2018 as our grand opening and landing downtown Kenosha,” said Amy Greil, vice president and acting president of the Kenosha Creative Space Board of Directors. “We are thrilled to embrace a community that has nurtured our early years of activation events and fundraisers. Thank you, Kenosha, for seeing us through; come grow with us in our new home!”
The recent purchase of the building at 624 57th St. was made possible in part by the property’s previous owner, Attorney Nathaniel Lepp, who has provided Kenosha Creative Space with a second mortgage on the property. Southport Bank provided the primary financing for the purchase.

KCS will continue seeking donors’ support to pay down the mortgage debt and finance improvements to the building.
The facility’s membership levels will consist of Standard, Pro, All Inclusive and Resident Office Member levels, with the latter receiving dedicated, private office space within the facility.

The initial Resident Office Members that will have dedicated office/work space will include the Kenosha Art Association, the Kenosha Symphony Orchestra and the Center for Collaborative Research. Initial individual members include photographer Julia A. Schiller and Blue House Books founder Samantha Jacquest.
The building is expected to become fully accessible to these and other new members within the next couple of months, with the exact timing depending upon existing tenants’ transitions. More information about the Kenosha Creative Space membership structure will be announced soon.

Along with the acquisition of the building, the Board of Directors in December granted full-time employment status to the organization’s executive director, Francisco Loyola, who worked previously as a paid consultant and a part-time employee. Loyola, a well-known organizer in Kenosha’s creative community, has been a key member of the organization’s leadership team since its inception.

“It was not easy to get here, but I am extremely optimistic about the future of the Kenosha Creative Space as a catalytic project and a community collaboration center,” Loyola said. “We are looking forward to the expansion possibilities of our member organizations, combined events and programming, and the potential positive impact that they can bring to Kenosha.”

Robert Schneider, another one of Kenosha Creative Space’s original champions, stepped down as Board president in December, with the organization having reached tax-exempt status. Schneider said he will continue to be involved as a volunteer. Schneider remains the executive director of the Kenosha Community Foundation, which served as the fiscal sponsor of Kenosha Creative Space from its inception until recently, providing the structure and support needed to reach the recent milestone of purchasing the building.
“It’s immensely gratifying to see this project come to fruition,” Schneider said. “While I will no longer have day-to-day involvement in the organization, I and the foundation remain strong supporters of it.”

Schneider and Loyola said the establishment of the Kenosha Creative Space would not have been possible without the project’s many donors and volunteers. “We’re where we are today because of them,” Loyola said.

For more information about joining Kenosha Creative Space or contributing to the organization, please contact Francisco Loyola at 262-945-9411 or francisco@kenoshacreativespace.com.

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