First 'pay-what-you-can' art studio, maker's space for kids opens in Raleigh

RALEIGH, N.C. (WTVD) -- The first pay-what-you-can kids art studio and maker space in Raleigh, Kid Lab, is now open.

Kid Lab Founder, Shannon Newby started the nonprofit in her home studio and moved into the children's bookstore Read With Me in the fall of 2019.

"We're a kid's art studio and maker space," Newby said. "So, we do a lot of programs geared for young kids ages 2 and up. We do a lot of art programs, science, STEM-related, and we do a lot in the community as well. It's pay what you can, so, hopefully that means everyone has access to this play-based learning."

Newby was inspired to use the pay-what-you-can model for Kid Lab by the popular Raleigh restaurant, A Place At The Table.

"It was so great to hear how she started small and how it just grew in the community, and the community rallied around that," Newby said. "And, I've felt that very much here. We're just starting out and everyone seems to get it and be excited about it."

Newby said the model works because some families donate a few extra dollars to help other families participate in events.

Kid Lab creates monthly themes workshops and programs, while the owner of Read With Me curates books to go along with the themes.

"It's been a dream. It's been fantastic," said Read With Me Owner Christine Brenner about the collaboration.

Kid Lab is located at 111 E Hargett St. Ste. 110 in Raleigh.
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