(WBRE/WYOU-TV The Pajama Factory started out in the 1880s, as a rubber company. Later on, hundreds worked here making Keds sneakers. In the 1930s, the Weldons PajamaCompany moved in. The eight-building complex would grow to become the largest pajama factory in the world.
A set is on display inside Todd Foresman’s Coffee shop on the ground floor, where he takes pride in his work.
“When you are cooking for people that you care about, you make a better meal. It’s the same with the coffee. I really love what I do. I really do believe I have the best coffee in the state,” said Todd Foresman, Owner, Way Cool Beans Coffee Shop
Todd’s landlord is property owner Mark Winkelman, an architect from New York. He’s renovating the Pajama Factory and turned part of the building into his home away from home.
“We’ve owned it for twelve years. It’s been a continuous renovation effort. And we will continue for many more years. I like the slow growth, the organic growth aspect of that,” said Mark Winkelman, Owner of the Pajama Factory.
“This studio space is larger than my apartment in New York City” exclaimed Sheilagh Weymouth
Sheilagh Weymouth is an award-winning actress from New York. She’s working on a new play. She says peaceful time spent at the Pajama Factory, away from the big city, is a blessing.
“This whole studio here and the whole Pajama Factory, it’s inspiration in every nook and cranny.” Noted Sheilagh Weymouth, Award Winning New York Actress
“To actually build a studio space for the community in here is a dream beyond dreams for me,”
Chad Andrews runs his own printmaking studio and is one of the original tenants. He’s now among over a hundred entrepreneurs, artists, and craftspeople who now live or work in the Pajama Factory.
“Through my education, the study of printmaking, I never imagined in my lifetime that I would actually have a print studio, one press, let alone four different presses.” Chad Andrews, Owner, Studio Paper +
Alicia Boyer’s sewing and design business grew so fast, she moved into a bigger space. Here children are learning to make their own backpacks.
“So there is really not a lot of opportunities for children to work with their hands, and be creative and artistic. If I can do that, and offer that to the kids in our community, I just feel like I am winning.” Added Alicia Boyer, Owner, Arrow and Thread Handmade Designs
A phrase that is often connected with the city of Williamsport is this one. It’s a city with a proud past and a promising future. But just what will this future look like for the PajamaFactory?
Danielle Velkoff, Head of Events and Business Development tells Eyewitness News
“We have just completed construction on our third and fourth floor. We have 36 new studios and 21 new tenants will be entering our doors within the next two months.”
“That’s the big long term vision, as a mixed-use living, working, fun space.”
Learn more about the Pajama Factory LINK