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The art of relaxation

Ceramics created and painted by the artists at The Art Bodega. Photo via

All too often, students fall into the same monotonous routine from week to week: attending classes Monday through Friday, going out on the weekends and napping all of Sunday. At a college this size, it’s astonishingly easy to get stuck in a pattern of living.

But when schedules become all too vanilla and you feel as if you’ve exhausted all your on-campus options, there is a perfect solution: Art at the Bodega in nearby Washington.

Named after the Spanish word for wine cellar, Art at the Bodega offers Bradley students the chance to eat, drink and make art.

According to owner Trish Yocum, even in a group with diverse interests, there’s something for everyone to do.

“One person can mess with clay while another is painting or making a wood project, so everyone can be together while still doing what they enjoy most,” Yocum said.

Art at the Bodega started five years after Yocum visited an art studio in Park City, Utah.

“I liked the atmosphere and wanted to see if it would work here in Washington,” Yocum said.

Longtime artist and employee, Olivia Bennett, would characterize the atmosphere as a great place to foster creativity.

“[It’s] fast paced … there’s always something to do. It’s a casual and flexible work environment,” Bennett said.

Upon entering the Bodega, customers are greeted with incredible art and pottery displays and shelves upon shelves of unfinished ceramics ready to be painted.

“The nice thing about the Bodega is that everyone can enjoy it regardless of their painting ability or skill level,” said Julianna Babin, a freshman in the academic exploration program.

Unlike other ceramics places, Art at the Bodega’s approach is very hands on. Customers select paint themselves and decide how they use it in their art.

Meredith Koch, a freshman computer engineering major, recommends Art at the Bodega to students.

“Any student who wants a low pressure environment [would like it] … where they can relax while enjoying creating,” Koch said.

Patrons to the Bodega can expect to see many fun additions in coming weeks. On Feb. 16, the Bodega is hosting a trivia night on “The Office,” and on Feb. 23 there will be a “Harry Potter Party.”

The Bodega is also in the process of booking a “sloth visit day” where customers can make artwork and wind down with an animal familiar with relaxation.

If you’re seeking a comfy place to escape the stress of classes or a chance to channel your creative side, join a class or stroll into Art at the Bodega.

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