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Welcome to the Sanctuary

We are committed to creative growth through the arts and engendering a spirit of community. This is a grassroots experiment in sharing. Follow the link below to read more about us.

About Us
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Check out the link to the calendar below to see upcoming shows, workshops and events happening at the Sanctuary.

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Sewing Night

Come the second Sunday of the month from 6pm to 9pm for sewing & mending night.

Suggested donation of $5 - $20

Call Debbie with questions

See you there!

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Open Lab

Our open lab hours are

12 pm to 7 pm
11 am to 4:30 pm.
11 am to 4:30 pm.

See the link below for more information.

Open Lab Brochure

Upcoming Events at the Sanctuary

Saturday, March 25th - Dreams, Visions and a Few Jokes

We are excited to welcome Jeff Demark and a cohort of other local storytellers to the Sanctuary for an eclectic evening of tales and tunes. These performers have spoken all over the area and will be bringing their perspective to our hall on Saturday March 25th.

$7-10 sliding scale at the door presale tickets at Wildberries Market in Arcata

“Dreams, Visions and a Few Jokes” played in November at the Space in Sunnybrae Center to sold out houses. This show will have a few changes and the group includes Tim Breed of Psychedelvis, storyteller Diana Heberger, sit-down comic Charlie Gilbert, writer Bob Davis, musician Marc Jeffars, who plays with the Trouble, Dr. Marvin Samuels, and Jeff DeMark who will plays songs and tell stories.

The stories and songs range from light and humorous to serious reflections on the some of life’s deeper mysteries. Conscious dreams and unconscious dreams share equal billing. There will also be a tongue-in- cheek dream analysis session with the audience.

DeMark and a rotating cast of storytellers and musicians have been performing thematic story and music shows for the past three years, with the first one taking place at the Westhaven Center. The themes have ranged from Summer to Fear to Travel and Mothers’ Day. The venues have been Dell’Arte Festival, the Arcata Playhouse, the Logger Bar and the Old Steeple in Ferndale and almost every show has sold out.

Play Sample ➤

Friday, March 31st - Chubritza

Come celebrate the international folk music of local band Chubritza, as well as support their efforts to continue learning traditional folk music from around the world by attending this special benefit concert.

Chubritza International folk band will present a musical trip around the world - a concert of lively dance music and folk songs in many languages, played on a large, varied collection of traditional and modern instruments. The concert is Friday, March 31, 2017, at the Creative Sanctuary, 1301 J Street in Arcata, at 7:30 p.m.

The evening will also include a dance performance by Middle Eastern dance expert, Shoshanna, and a special cameo by students from the Sunnybrae Middle School music program. Refreshments, and a fabulous collection of jewelry and folkwear will also be available for purchase.

Proceeds from this concert will provide scholarships for local people to study music and dance at workshops and camps next summer.

Chubritza performs traditional dance music and songs from both urban and village traditions from Albania, Bosnia, Bulgaria, Croatia, Greece, Israel, Japan, Macedonia, Mexico, Romania, Russia, Serbia, Ukraine, U.S.A. and Jewish/Klezmer and Romani (Gypsy) peoples. These songs reflect many universal themes which all people share: the passion of being in love, the sorrow of lost love, and the happiness music and dance brings to the heart.

Thursday, April 6th - The Crow Quill Night Owls

For the first time ever in Arcata, the Sanctuary is proud to present The Crow Quill Night Owls, an amazing jug band from Port Townsend, WA. Their songbook and style is an homage to the old, weird Americana music of the 20's and 30's, and we have good reason to believe there will be some serious dancing at this performance.

The Crow Quill Night Owls were formed in 2007 by musician / 78 Collector- Kit "Stymee" Stovepipe, and tenor banjoist/ vocalist- Windy City Alex.

The group plays a mix of early blues, jazz, tin pan ally pop songs, ragtime, jug band, and hillbilly music from the 1920's and 30's. They also put their love of old silent films, comics, and bizarre cartoons of the past into the original artwork they create for their albums.

In the style of the Memphis Jug Band, they have a pool of musicians they draw from for gigs, recording dates, and tours, so you can often hear some of the best underground musicians of this style in their band.

The band has toured with the belly dance group "The Indigo" in their "Le Serpent Rouge" variety show, performed as part of Baby Gramp's band, Kit "Stymee" Stovepipe has opened for blues legend Honey Boy Edwards, as well as surf legend Dick Dale, and Los Lobos. The band has also toured with and recorded two albums as the Garden of Joy Jug Band with Maria Muldaur.

Both Garden of Joy albums featured Kit "Stymee" Stovepipe as the main guitarist, playing with John Sebastian, David Grisman and Dan Hicks. The first of the two was nominated for a Grammy!

They've played from west coast, to east coast on street corners, at festivals, in rundown bars, house shows, big concert halls, and down in the subways of New York.

They've been performing strange and familiar early American Music on makeshift and traditional instruments, since as early as 2001, and have recorded 4 albums as the Crow Quill Night Owls.

Website ➤         Play Sample ➤

Current Art Exhibit at the Sanctuary

Science Fiction Storytelling & A Curious Garden

The Sanctuary is pleased to announce two new exhibitions. The main hall will feature “Science Fiction Storytelling,” a selection of paintings, drawings, and mixed media by Violet Crabtree around the theme of imagined science fiction book covers. The meeting room will feature new works on paper and sculpture by Bryan Schoneman and Cindy Tirsbeck entitled, “A Curious Garden.” The exhibitions will be up through the months of March and April, and will be celebrated with an opening reception Friday March 10th 6-9pm during Arts Arcata.

The opening reception will also feature a screening of “ComiX Trip,” a selection of videos by the performance art group of the same name. These wild, whimsical, and musical shorts tell stories crafted by Violet Crabtree through live action, animation, claymation, and song.

Violet Crabtree

Science Fiction Storytelling

Violet Crabtree’s new paintings & drawings are surreal works of fiction, painting the landscapes of imagined science fiction novels. With such titles as “The Golden Sands of Home,” “Rain Cloud Headphones,” and “Saturn Eyes,” each work in the show represents an imagined book cover for a novel that exists only in Crabtree’s mind. Each detail is filled with intrigue, suggesting plot twists and turns, and taking the viewer on a wild and weird journey.

The show will also serve as a debut of sorts for a set of curtains that Crabtree has crafted specifically for the Sanctuary’s large main hall windows. The curtains depict pastoral and urban landscapes under the cloud of a UFO invasion.

Violet describes herself as “a cartoonist, painter, storyteller, crafter in textiles and filmmaker. Arcata inspired since 2006. Self-taught in all these realms, I strive to elevate the observer above the mundane, and smash the rigidity of civilization and structure.”

Bryan Schoneman & Cindy Tirsbeck: A Curious Garden

Selection from “A Curious Garden” by Bryan Schoneman

A curious garden features work by two artists approaching the same theme, each with a unique visual language. Presenting both two and three dimensional works, the artists will fill the Sanctuary’s meeting room with flowers, roots, soil & color for the Spring months of March and April.

In Schoneman’s own words: “The show ‘A Curious Garden’ presents artwork based on the idea that the garden is a construct, a projection of our desire to control our environment, and the beauty this manipulation can produce. The dynamic created by the difference in our interpretations of flowers, root masses, space and time is the heart of this collaboration. The artwork strives to find beauty in the interpretation rather than re-presentation. We are creating a curious garden from our relationship between plants, our imaginations, and our bodies...”

Eastern European Folk Music Meetup - Mondays at 7pm

You are invited to play and sing a variety of Eastern European, Balkan, and international folk music with a community music group (hosted by members of Chubritza) meeting on Monday evenings at the Sanctuary at 1301 J Street in Arcata!

All instruments and levels are welcome. The first meeting for the spring session will be Feb 13 from 7:00 – 8:30 pm. Here is the current schedule:

7:00 – 7:30 focus on singing

7:30 – 8:00 singing and instruments together

8:00 – 8:30 focus on instrumental parts

You are welcome to attend all, or any specific part of the evening.

Please bring a variety of instruments, your singing voice, and music you might like to try. Participants are welcome to read music or learn by ear. (A recording device may be helpful.)

A $1-3 donation per session is requested toward cost of the space, with thanks to the Humboldt Folklife Society for providing a grant to subsidize expenses.

If you have questions, or would like any additional information about this Meetup, please contact Linnea at 707-496-6784 or or Craig at

click for past event info >>

© Creative Sanctuary • 1301 J Street Arcata, CA 95521 • 707-822-0898 • Closed Thursdays
the Sanctuary is dedicated to creative growth through artful living. We encourage people to teach, inspire and know each other.