EDITOR’S NOTE: “Yachats’ Laughing Crab gallery prepares to scuttle south,” Cheryl Romano’s story about the art gallery’s pending move to Florence, was published originally on July 5, 2021, by YachatsNews.com, an ArtsWatch Community Partner. ArtsWatch is republishing the piece with permission.
By CHERYL ROMANO/YachatsNews.com
The Laughing Crab art gallery is leaving downtown Yachats for a bigger space on the Florence bayfront.
“We’re sorry to be leaving our friends in Yachats, but since our building is being sold, we had to make the hard decision to move,” said Kim McLaughlin, co-owner of the gallery with husband Gary Manos. “We hope everyone will come see us in our new location — 1341 Bay St., in Old Town, between Beachcomber’s and Bay Street Grill.”
Plans are to reopen in early August.
The gallery had been on a month-to-month lease with the owner of the building, Douglas Sowden of Eugene.
But not knowing the new owner’s intent, “we decided not to wait to hear our fate,” McLaughlin said.
The couple couldn’t afford to buy the space themselves. “We tried our best to find a buyer on our end that would rent to us — no luck, unfortunately,” she said. “There was nowhere else to move to in Yachats, so we’re reluctantly moving to another town.”
The gallery had been offering wine tastings and outdoor patio music and food, with the final event June 30, the day their wine license expired. The two owners, who live in Florence, plan to keep the Yachats gallery open through much of July.
The 1,148-square-foot space is in a commercial/condominium complex called Sunset Village Condos, built in 2008. The list price is $340,000. It is being marketed by Coastal Homes and Land in Yachats and on Craigslist in Eugene as a commercial space that be divided into two spaces for residential and business.
First located just north of town on U.S. Highway 101, the gallery moved to its current location in September 2019. McLaughlin said the new Florence location will be almost twice that size, and allow them to showcase more Oregon and regional artisans.
“We feel very blessed to have gone through this pandemic in a place where there is so much support from the local community,” McLaughlin said. “I wish there was somewhere else for us to move to in Yachats, but that’s not the case.”