When talking with Jeff Boris, executive director of the First Friday Auction, during a short interview with The Weekender, it was clear just how much First Friday helps the arts of Scranton flourish. Each month, the Scranton community gathers together to display and celebrate the creativity of its artists.
The First Friday Auction is held each year and collects donations to fund First Friday events year round. This year will be the fourth annual auction and will take place at the Scranton Cultural Center (420 N. Washington Ave., Scranton), a place that Boris feels is a great building to display the community's art in.
“Highlighting the artists and the Cultural Center makes it a unique event,” Boris said.
“The building itself is very historic, so it's nice to have the auction in there. We get all the people there for the auction, and all the different artists have their art there. It makes a nice impact and reflects nicely on what Scranton has to offer.”
Each month, multiple venues, organizations, sponsors, donors, and artists get together to celebrate the unique diversity that Scranton has to offer. This celebration keeps a sense of unity within the city and shows the amount of pride that people have for their community.
“Art is just a way to communicate ideas. Scranton itself is filled with ideas, and a lot of times, it's hard to get those ideas out there,” Boris explained.
“Art is a way to put ideas out there, especially if they are very tough ideas: ideas that can't be passed on in words.”
This year's First Friday Auction will take place on April 12 from 6-9 p.m. on the second floor of the Scranton Cultural Center. Over fifty local artists will be displaying and auctioning off their creations with most of the money collected going toward the First Friday fund. There will also be a silent auction with items donated by the community and sponsors of First Friday, as well as a wine pool and musical entertainment by the Coal Town Rounders.
“We do have a lot of great sponsors, and I think the auction itself and First Friday help to highlight the way that the community supports Scranton,” added Boris.
“It's the community that comes out and puts their best foot forward, especially at the auction. The people are really into making Scranton worth it.”
Between over 50 pieces of art, the silent auction, and the wine pool, Boris said there is something for everyone at this event, no matter what their age is.
“At some point during the auction, you should walk away with something. If you walk away empty handed, I would be surprised.
“First Friday itself, I think, helps as a way for the arts to become a little more visible in the area.”
Additional information about First Friday Scranton and the art auction can be found at firstfridayscranton.com.