Legacy Glassworks re-opening

Legacy Glassworks is more than just a head shop, and the local Duluth business’s expansion proves this.

“We custom built this new shop over the course of two months. It’s double the square footage of the old shop,” said Legacy Glassworks co-owner Josh Wilken-Simon.

On Saturday, Oct. 19, Legacy welcomed the community to check out the new shop on 30 West 1st Street in downtown Duluth.  The tobacco shop/art gallery/music venue continues to bring in artists of varying mediums, from glassblowing to painting to rapping. The store has come to create a hub of hip entertainment and art appreciation for the third year running.

For the re-opening celebration, Legacy hosted live glassblowing and music performances from 11 a.m. to 11 p.m. The event featured local artists from Duluth, Minneapolis and all around the Midwest.

Before moving one shop down to have the corner store lot, Legacy was just a tiny office space.

They still managed to throw events like the grand opening, but it didn’t take much to reach maximum capacity and some events had artists preforming out on the sidewalks due to lack of space.

Now, Legacy 2.0 has the space to host even bigger bashes. As one could guess, this calls for more precautions in protecting the fragile glass pieces that line three of the four walls of the shop.

“We do take some precautions,” said Wilken-Simon. “We have enough staff, and in all the concerts we have had in the old shop, which was even smaller, we never had any problems. People are really respectful.”

Legacy co-owner Wilken-Simon also said the new space definitely makes the business a more accessible venue for the variety of artists the store has to offer.

DJ T. Dack (a.k.a. Tobin Dack) has been a local Duluth musician for the past 11 years. He said he performs at Legacy more than any other venue in Duluth because it’s “friendly and personable.” He describes his music as “down tempo ambient.”

“I like the culture,” Dack said. “Everyone that works at Legacy has been really supportive of the local music scene…it’s really nice to get my foot in the door.”

The new storefront invited Minneapolis glassblowing artist Odd Thomas to come up north for the grand re-opening. Prior to this weekend, Thomas had never been to the Duluth shop to blow glass, but the “friendly, personal” environment made a good first impression.

Screen Shot 2013-10-20 at 8.39.14 PM

“It’s really nice to see that (the artists) are all from Minnesota, Wisconsin…the upper Midwest,” said Thomas, who has been professionally blowing glass for the past nine years. “There’s too many stores that are just willing to order crap online because they can get it for cheaper.”

Wilken-Thomas said Legacy prides itself on being local, both in the products they sell and through the artists they support.

“People really appreciate that we sell stuff,” he said. “When other stores in my industry sell Chinese and Indian-imported glass, we bring it all local so that’s what the customers really appreciate.”

Talking Nerdy: An ode to the Underground

Weekend getaway: Mountain biking at Copper Harbor, Mich.