The Depot offers hand-crafted items made with love

By TESA STRASSER The Press-News Published:

Depot Crafts and Collectibles is located at 208 Woodard St. in Louisville, just off of state Route 44, near Burger King.

The shop is filled with unique holiday and everyday hand-crafted home decorating items as well as Billy Jacobs prints, crocks, rustic signs, metal stars, candles and antiques.

The four-month-old shop is run by Mike Tornow and Betty Cowles. The crafts sold at the shop are created by disabled individuals. The Depot provides supervision and training and the five adult and three student employees acquire a form of gainful employment. In reference to the employees, Cowles said, "They love what they do and do a fabulous job." Each has their area of expertise and are very proud of the quality of their work. Depot stands for Disability Employment Pathways and On-sight Training.

Cowles believes the store carries items "no one else has" because most of the patterns are original. The beautiful wreaths, snowmen, dolls, and ornaments will add a cozy atmosphere to any home.

Hours for the store are 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., Monday through Friday and 10-4 on Saturday.

With 50 years of experience in similar atmospheres, Cowels brings a wealth of practical and loving wisdom to the establishment. She cared for a Downes syndrome brother-in-law for 47 years and has worked many years for Stark MRDD in the craft department. She was employed with Tornow at Hartville Meadows for four and a half years before they joined forces to start this venture.

Tornow is a Walsh University graduate and a licensed clinical counselor. He is married to Tina Cowles, Betty's daughter. They have two sons, Ben, age 15 and Elliot, age 10.

Betty has six children, Connie Clark, Theresa Prince, Matt Cowles, Luke Cowles, Nick Cowles and Tina Tornow.

Also on staff at the Depot is Lori Moyer of the Canton South area. Moyer brings over 30 years of experience to the table.

For more information or to refer a potential disabled employee, contact Mike Tornow at 330-904-9362.

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