Local artisan shop opens at The Homestead


A new shop featuring handcrafted works by local artisans recently opened at The Homestead in Hot Springs.  David Jurcak, Managing Director of the Omni Homestead Resort, says this is a first step towards filling up the Cottage Row shops hopefully within the next year.

 “So we’re excited about reinvigorating Cottage Row,” says Jurcak.  “We’ve had our first merchant.  Heather DeBoe has formed an alliance or a group of nine artisans, along with herself.  She opened up our first shop called The Sparrow’s Nest.  It allows for opportunities for guests to come in, and people in the community to come in, and look at and purchase pottery, jewelry, woodwork.  All made by people within the local community.”

The Sparrow’s Nest is open Monday through Saturday from 9 to 6 and Sunday 9 to 1. 

Heather DeBoe is the owner of The Sparrow’s Nest.

“Well, as a local person myself, I think we need more places to shop locally, that’s always nice,” says DeBoe.  “But I also wanted to provide a place for local artisans and farms to flourish in our community.  My favorite thing has been getting in new items.  It’s always fun.  I’m like a kid at Christmas unwrapping everything to see what they’ve brought in.  We have a variety of handmade items from local artisans and farms: jewelry, furniture, pottery, handmade soap, jellies and much more.”

Later this month The Homestead is sponsoring a Relay for Life fundraiser featuring a performance by Chris Cauley.

“Our hotel has come together as a group,” says Jurcak.  “We did some team building exercises with all the departments.  And we challenged all the departments to raise as much money as they can independently to see who would raise the most money for Relay for Life.   We’ve raised over $12,000 now as a resort.  We’ve been working for several months.  Everything will culminate on August 16, which is the Relay for Life at the high school.  But on August 15 there will be a party here at The Homestead.  Tickets are available through Relay for Life, twenty dollars for adults, ten for children.   Chris Cauley will be the musician. He was seen on The Voice, as well as some food and beverages that will be served and fireworks to round out the evening. And it will be in the Mountain Lodge, at the Ski Lodge, at the resort.”

And all summer The Homestead has been sponsoring a free weekly music event.

“Music on Main is still going well,” says Jurcak.  “It’s been a success.  People in the community have liked it. Several of our guests have made it down to Main Street, which is the purpose of it is to get more activity on Main Street.  And help the local merchants and get some foot traffic on the street.”

Music on Main is held 6 to 8 each Friday night in downtown Hot Springs, across from the fire department.  It runs through August 29 and food is available at each concert. 

“Part of our commitment in Omni Hotels is to our community,” says Jurcak.  “And we need to support the community in which we live and work.  And Omni Hotels’ commitment is to always support different efforts.  We can’t support everything.  But we can support a lot of things that our associates are involved in.  We recently sponsored the youth basketball camp, we’ve done things with the baseball team at the high school, Relay for Life, some local church events. But it’s our commitment to do what we can.  But we want to reach out and we want to be the right corporate citizen, we know our responsibility in the community.  We know it’s the largest employer in the community, that we need to be a part of the community every day.”

To get more information on The Sparrow’s Nest or any of The Homestead activities, call 540-839-1766.

Story By

Bonnie Ralston

Bonnie Ralston is the Assistant Station Coordinator at WVLS and a Highland County news reporter. She began volunteering at Allegheny Mountain Radio in the fall of 2005. In 2006 she became an AMR employee and worked in Bath County for eight years as the WCHG Station Coordinator and then as the news reporter there. She began working in radio while in college and has stayed connected to radio, in one way or another, for more than thirty years. She grew up in Staunton, Virginia, while spending a lot of time on her family’s farm in Deerfield, Virginia. She enjoys spending time outside, watching old TV shows and movies and tending to her chickens.

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