Craft Cafe recently opened in Andover

ANDOVER. A new business recently opened in Andover and it has focus on keeping children occupied in a fun way that fosters creativity.


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  • Gabriel Gonzalez, the son of Craft Cafe's owner, has a ball at the new store. (Photos by Laurie Gordon)




  • Craft Cafe recently had its Grand Opening and is making children, and their parents, very happy. The brain child of Dorine Sileo, of Fredon, the concept came about a year ago based on the idea that it would be great to have a bounce house-type place in the area. “We thought because we were like big kids ourselves that it was a great idea,” she said. “Then the idea for Craft Cafe came along and I wrote up a mission statement that turned into an full drawn out plan.” The basic day-to-day at the store involves three menus that are created to be age appropriate for children that fall into age categories: two to four, five to seven, and eight years and older. “Each menu has four crafts to choose from which will change monthly,” Sileo explained. “A customer comes in with a child, chooses which craft they would like, and pays the fee depending on the menu.” Children receive a packaged snack and 45 minutes to an hour of supervised time to create the craft and to snack. “I can't thank Craft Cafe enough,” said Joanne Llyod Saul. “Everyone had an amazing time and the boys said it was their favorite party ever and we go all out each year. It was a refreshing change from the usual bowling, jumping and later tag. everyone enjoyed making creative slime. Smiles all around.” “The other big part of the store is our sensory room,' Sileo said. “This room was created for children ideally four and under. If you come to the store with an older child doing a craft then the room is available complimentary to the younger visitor. However, the room is available to use if you just have little ones for a small fee. I hope to make that room available for special needs children and therapists in the future.” Upstairs, there are two party rooms where anything from birthday parties to ladies' nights to baby showers to paint and sips can be held. Also every month, Craft Cafe will have two or more special events. For example, in April, there was an Easter egg decorating day and in May, look for a “drive in movie night” where children will get a cardboard box to decorate for their cars and then enjoy popcorn and a movie. In the near future, there are plans to add a party in a box which can be custom ordered with all the supplies to host a craft party at home. Sileo has worked with children all of her life having been a nanny for several families, taught preschool, coached cheerleading, ran gymnastics birthday parties and is a mom herself. “I enjoy watching children learn and create, and I believe moms and dads need a place where they can go and have their kids be occupied and safe,” she said. “We also have a coffee bar to help make the adults comfortable too.” Craft Cafe is located in Andover Borough at 144-146 Main Street in the same building as Penny Lane Antiques. For further information, visit: HYPERLINK "http://www.craftcafe.net" www.craftcafe.net or call 848-226-1888. You can also find Craft Cafe on Facebook. 




Craft Cafe recently had its Grand Opening and is making children, and their parents, happy, while fostering creativity.

The concept was the brain child of Dorine Sileo, of Fredon.

“We thought because we were like big kids ourselves that it was a great idea,” she said. “Then the idea for Craft Cafe came along and I wrote up a mission statement that turned into an full drawn out plan.”

The basic day-to-day at the store involves three menus that are created to be age appropriate for children that fall into age categories: two to four, five to seven, and eight years and older.

“Each menu has four crafts to choose from which will change monthly,” Sileo explained. “A customer comes in with a child, chooses which craft they would like, and pays the fee depending on the menu.”

Children receive a packaged snack and 45 minutes to an hour of supervised time to create the craft and to snack.

“I can't thank Craft Cafe enough,” said Joanne Llyod Saul. “Everyone had an amazing time and the boys said it was their favorite party ever and we go all out each year. It was a refreshing change from the usual bowling, jumping and later tag. everyone enjoyed making creative slime. Smiles all around.”

Sileo highlighted the sensory room.

“This room was created for children ideally four and under. If you come to the store with an older child doing a craft then the room is available complimentary to the younger visitor. However, the room is available to use if you just have little ones for a small fee. I hope to make that room available for special needs children and therapists in the future.”

Upstairs, there are two party rooms where anything from birthday parties to ladies' nights to baby showers to paint and sips can be held. Also every month, Craft Cafe will have two or more special events. For example, in April, there was an Easter egg decorating day and in May, look for a “drive in movie night” where children will get a cardboard box to decorate for their cars and then enjoy popcorn and a movie. In the near future, there are plans to add a party in a box which can be custom ordered with all the supplies to host a craft party at home.

Sileo has worked with children all of her life having been a nanny for several families, taught preschool, coached cheerleading, ran gymnastics birthday parties and is a mom herself.

“I enjoy watching children learn and create, and I believe moms and dads need a place where they can go and have their kids be occupied and safe,” she said. “We also have a coffee bar to help make the adults comfortable too.”

Craft Cafe is located in Andover Borough at 144-146 Main St., in the same building as Penny Lane Antiques. For further information, visit: www.craftcafe.net or call 848-226-1888.



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