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Writers & Books expanding Gell Center

Dec 28, 2017

Gleason Lodge at Gell
Credit wab.org

Writers & Books in Rochester is using a state grant to expand Gell: A Finger Lakes Creative Retreat in the Bristol Hills near Naples.

The literary center has been awarded a $527,000 regional development grant from the New York State Council on the Arts and Empire State Development.

The expansion plans include improvements to the Gleason Lodge, adding 16 bedrooms, six bathrooms, lounge areas and expanded parking, according to Executive Director Kyle Semmel.

"It's going to expand our opportunities for inviting authors from around the nation and around the world to the Finger Lakes region," he said.

Semmel says the Gell Center will be able to house writers and participants in classes, workshops and conferences at the Center for as short a stay as two days to as long as a month.

Gell House

"When you’re surrounded by other writers, when you have an opportunity to go to your room and do your writing, then come out and be in a social environment with other writers, you grow from that.  You grow from other writers.  That's how writers become better writers," he said.

Semmel says a matching capital campaign will be launched, and so far $55,000 has already been secured.

Groundbreaking on the expansion is expected in the fall of 2018.