ALPHARETTA, Ga. — Driving past the eclectic Alpharetta cottage at 377 South Main St., it’s easy to imagine the inside looking like an art gallery. This building was home to just that, an art gallery.
Matilda’s Cottage, owned by Mary Jane Potter, has stood open for 13 years. It was the former home of an art gallery that served local and regional artists, but as of two years ago, it became Matilda’s Under the Pines.
Today, Matilda’s is an outdoor concert venue that is open from May through July with a concert every Saturday. The original store had the art gallery indoors and concerts outdoors, but Potter moved the gallery to 959 Canton St. in Roswell.
“I was hoping to increase the traffic into the art gallery because it had no walk-in traffic and it was a destination location,” said Potter. “I wanted more exposure to the art. I love music and wanted to do a music venue and thought the backyard would be a nice place to do music.”
Potter also thought the music venue would be a good place for local musicians to rock out.
“They need a place to do their music and show their art, so it’s just kind of the way it happened,” said Potter. “It just happened that way — it’s fulfilling a need in the community.”
Attendance at Matilda’s increased this year because of the concerts, but Potter is hopeful more residents will visit. The venue itself is laid back, with a stage set up in the backyard. Chairs are provided, but are also limited, and Potter suggests picking up dinner from a local restaurant for a picnic during the concert.
“We appreciate the support of the community and hope, if they haven’t given us a try, then they’ll come out and experience it,” said Potter. “It’s kind of a redneck Chastain, but it’s a very pleasant, low-key and informal live music venue.”
The Fourth of July is a big hit for Matilda’s, including Potter’s homemade barbecue, a concert and of course fireworks.
“The city of Alpharetta’s fireworks display is practically in our backyard,” said Potter.
To learn more, visit www.matildascottagemarket.com or to RSVP for the Fourth of July, call Potter at 770-754-7831.